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Brood box inspections, how often after the Flow Super is added? Elimbah Queensland

I’m a newby to bee keeping. I started my hive with a nuc. I checked the brood box weekly to see how things were progressing. After 4 weeks I felt that the brood box had grown enough to install the Super. The new installation happened 3 weeks ago. My question is, do I check the brood box on a regular schedule or do I just leave it alone? I haven’t been into the brood box since I put the Super on.
Many thanks for any assistance that I can receive from the bee community.

Regards Sue.

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In order to learn about your bees, I think it’s good practice to look at your broodbox every 2 or 3 weeks. For now, just see if your bees got started on your flow super.
In spring you may want to look at your brood more often to see if they get ready to swarm, but now just give them a bit of time to move up. Not sure what the nectar flow is like where you are.
Your bees may start working the flow super or just keep the brood fed.
You definitely want to look at the brood if they don’t go up sealing the flow frames. Then you need to ensure your bees find enough food.
If not, you need to feed them and take the super off for that.

I’m in Northern NSW and it’s so very dry. Usually we are in a summer dearth in the mountains, but this year there is enough for the bees to still increase their weight by 500g daily, and the nucs are growing fast.

It very much depends on your locality and if the bees find food.
I don’t have a schedule for checking my brood, but if you are new to beekeeping, check every 2 to 3 weeks for now, so your experience grows with your colony.

Thankyou very much for that in depth reply. We live in southeast Queensland near the Glasshouse Mountains. There are a lot of flowering trees in the area and the girls arrive home with a healthy amount of pollen on there legs early in the day. Today I noticed one of the bees exit the hive with what appeared to be a deceased larva and disposed of it under the hive. This led me to wonder about checking the brood. Have you ever had or seen this behaviour in your hive?

Yes, seen it. Nothing to worry about.
Make sure you learn about brood diseases and look out for those at your brood checks.
Check on your coreflute slider what kind of debris you find.
There’s a lot to learn.
You can always post a photo here on the forum. There are a lot of helpful experienced beekeepers here.
I’m only just in my third year, but my family in Europe keeps bees, so it’s in the blood somehow.

A mentor really helps, but people keep bees for different reasons and it’s not always easy to find someone who takes your newbie ideas with a grain of salt.
This forum is likely your safest place and you sure will get helpful answers to most of your questions.
The search function is great too. Many questions have been answered before and links are provided to help you widen your perspective.
Enjoy your beekeeping journey!


Again, many thanks for your help. I can see that I also have a lot to learn. The journey will be worthwhile I am sure.
Kind regards Sue.

So your not too far away Sues, I’m at Coolum Beach. To be honest I am surprised that a nuc had built out a brood box to need supering after only 4 weeks.
I do inspections weekly above the QX for SHB (small hive beetle), probably our biggest pest issue, and to check that all is happy and going as expected. Each fortnight I go further and do a brood inspection and clean up any bur comb and clean up the QX, check the brood and look for evidence the queen is laying and finally for the temperament of the colony, if they are angry I try to figure out what is annoying them other than checking them on a very hot day.
Tips Look for SHB, they seem to be in every nuc supplied free of cost.:wink:
Make sure there is a supply of water for them to drink in a dish that is full of twigs, stones or corks that they can land on to take up the water, bees do drown. Cover the water with ‘floaties’ as they only need to drink and not have a bath. They also use the water to cool the inside of the hive.
A big welcome to the forum where you will find folks really happy to give good advise.
Regards Peter


hello from Albany, WA! just searching about this topic. Just put my FH super on for the first time and appears its starting to be used. following on from Sue’s question - where do you put the super when inspecting the brood box? i don’t want to put on the ground - a frame? just worried about squishing. doesn’t taking the super off increase chances of the queen sneaking into it?

Hi there, good question. I like to have extra equipment, and that helps me with this problem. I put a flat roof upside down on the ground, and then put a spare crown board/inner cover inside that to provide bee space. The super can then be rested on the crown board (slowly and gently) without squishing. You can also use a spare empty box to provide the empty space.

I like to use the flat roof upside down in case the queen is in the box I am removing. Yes, she can get above a queen excluder sometimes! :wink: With the roof in place on the ground, she doesn’t wander off into the grass before I notice…

Hope that helps.

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I haven’t put my supers on yet, but I was also trying to troubleshoot this exact problem. I have a bigger issue because I have limited, uneven ground to work on.

I’ve seen people having a small table or stand where they can put the super or other equipment. I use the Flow standard issue roof (cute but I don’t like it), and it is not practical to put it upside down and use it as a stand I think.

It depends on your work area, but I think if you can make an a-frame or some sort of work surface like a table etc, it would be great. If it was me, if I had to put the super on a flat surface, I’ll have a couple strips of timbers, or cleats to rest it on, less chance of squishing bees.

I have a plastic milk crate and I think I will use that unless I come with a better idea.

Many thanks! I think I may knock up a frame that matches the dimensions of the super, grab an extra hive mat and pop on a table - best of both worlds.

I have a folding ladder I use:

Wood working saw horses, a frame, another super… use whatever you can find… you sound resourceful enough ;).

I’m changing my set up over Christmas so that I have a stand with enough space for 3 hives, but will only have 2 hives. Dad found this somewhere… we’ll modify it to suit our needs.


I use an empty bee box sitting on the ground placed next to a hive and place the super on it a bit diagonally so that there is less risk of bee deaths. It is always handy to have some spare bee boxes.

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i like that you don’t have to bend over. cool

I’m actually dropping the height. The current height of the super is much too high. I’ve had trouble lifting it off due to the weight. Fill a super with 21/25kg and experiment with various heights.

Good idea to drop the height. :+1: my first stand left the brood box at waist height which I thought was a great idea. Now I need a milk crate to inspect… I also had enough room for an extra hive but now use a blue barrel to sit boxes on…