Hello, I am completely new to beekeeping, so much so in fact I am still in the stage of just initially researching the process and what it requires, before I actually consider purchasing any equipment.
So far I’ve only done about one day of research, by watching all the Flow videos provided and just brief research into the different honeybee species and the pros and cons of each depending on the environment.
So far these are the initial questions I have, apologises if these are really basic, explained somewhere in the information already provided or I have not used the correct termniology, but would love it if someone could potentially please help to answer the following:
- On reviewing the one of the flow videos, briefly discussed was the brood box extraction process, consisting of:
removing the frame;
brushing off all the bees;
processing in shed/ kitchen;
cutting the wax capping off, with a heated knife;
spinning frames in a centrifuge/ extractor;
filtering out the dead bees + wax;
taking the frames back to the hive;
clean up the mess.
- Was just wondering if Flow could provide a video on this process to explain this further?
- How to open the hive, how to remove frames, and how to brush of the bees, have been extensively covered- but was wondering if you could explain:
The best technique/ way of cutting off capped honey?- What do you do with the capped wax? Can you repurpose this ? - Do you just dispose of it? - Can you compost it? saw you can buy additional piercing like/ roller tools is there particular specialist equipment for this- will flow produce their own version of any fo these kinds of equipment?? (would be nice to be able to purchase this all from you rather than having to source from different brands/ companies)
What centrifuge/ extractor is compatible with flow brood frames- Will flow potentially produce their own centrifuge which can be compatible with your own frames so people can buy this from you direct?? Is there a particular type of centrifuge/ company you use which is compatible with your sized frames? Does this vary depending on your region- e.g. is UK sizing different from US/AUS sized frames? I’ve seen a lot of people with homemade centrifuges- is this okay or is a manufactured one best for not damaging existing honey cells (if this matters at all) Is it quite common for people to make their own- is this not really a problem?
*Could you (while you are going through this extraction process) place new brood frames in your brood box, rather than waiting on the frames you are preparing in this process? Are there particular benefits or weaknesses in using the pre-existing brood frames or is this dependable on the season and how productive your bees are being? I.E. would this maybe be okay to promote the bees to naturally create their own wax again rather than using the wax from the pre-existing frames? Or is this too much to expect the bees to do over and over again? is this only okay in high pollination/ production seasons when they have a higher yield?
*filtering the honey? - what do you use just a sieve? or can you buy specialised pieces of equipment to do this?
** So if I was to purchase a flow hive, I would be able to use the technology to get honey from the super. Is it required for me to even do this brood box extraction process at all as long as I didn’t want the honey from the brood box??? or is this required as part of the upkeep and maintenance of a healthy bee colony? As long as I checked the bee brood box for disease etc. would I need to do this process at all- it just sound it requires a lot of additional equipment. if i wasn’t to harvest the brood honey would this cause issues with excess? or would the bees just feed off of it?
*Is there any significant difference between the honey produced in the super compared to the brood? or it varies but it is does so due to time of collection, and plant type of pollination rather than a noticeable difference due to the sectional location within the hive? Is there a preferred/ more desired honey type on average to collect out of the two (super vs brood) (if there is a distinction at all)? Does a clear distinction with honey only occur when using different bee species?- or is it predominately affected on time of year and plant type- What factors affect honey the most significantly?
*What are the recommendations when it comes to placing more than one hive on the same garden/ area? - is there a minimum distance you should place them apart? I am assuming you cannot have more than one species of bee in the same area- due to them potentially invading each other hives? or are there species which are compatible together? Or should this be avoided due to crossbreeding?
[Sorry for the bombardment of questions] thank you to anyone who can answer any of the questions above.