First honey harvest in Brisbane

Hi everyone,
I am hoping for some advise please!
I have had my hive since about November last year and have just harvested my first honey from 1 frame only, which I thought was the fullest. I went back to the farm a week later to harvest a few more frames and the amount of honey in the flow seemed to have reduced. I’m not sure how this could be possible? Would the bees see the first extraction as a threat and move the honey back to the broad box? Not sure if this makes any sense but would love some experienced thoughts. Thanks, Vanessa
(a novice beekeeper :honeybee:)

Hi Vanessa, thanks for asking your question.
There is nothing unusual about the honey reducing in the flow frames.
The same has happened here in my flow frames.
We are well into autumn and not many flowers around, well, at least not here.
The bees are either consuming their honey stock or moving some of it to the brood box to feed the nursing bees.
What is your beehive configuration, ie. brood box, then a super box and flow frame box on top ?
It is most likely the time of the year to leave the honey for the bees to get them through winter and hopefully not having to feed them.
You should do a hive inspection and see what honey stores there are.

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Thanks George,

That makes sense! Appreciate your advice.

Kind regards Vanessa

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Hi Vanessa, my advice is somewhat different, being that I’m not far away in Buderim. There’s a honey flow on up here & I’m taking all the honey that’s ready to take. I’m not worried about the possibility of a dearth, on account that the bees are storing lots of honey in the brood boxes, which will keep them going for quite a while without honey in the honey supers.

I’m not sure how you’re judging “full frames”. Through the rear viewing window, or physically inspecting the frames. The only way to be sure, is by physically inspecting the frames.

Hi Vanessa,
Just chiming in here to add that when I harvest a frame or two from one of the flow hives, I notice, particularly through the harvest window, that the bees can relocate or eat uncapped honey in other frames as well as cleaning out the harvested frame(s). It seems to happen every time, at least on the outer frame edges, and I think it’s quite normal. Like you though, I wondered what the hell was going on at the time.

Hi Jeff, before my first harvest I watch the Flow Hive video where looked from the front of the hive (where the honey flows from). Saw the most full cell. From the side window I see only the outer most frame which was mostly capped so thought I was good to go. I have not inspected my brood box for about 2 months so over Easter that is on my to do list, as well as hopefully getting more honey.
Thanks so much for your comments.

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Thanks outbeck!



Hi Vanessa, a lot of people find that the viewing window is not an accurate guide as to how full the frames are. Sometimes they can look full, however not contain much honey, while other times the don’t look full, however contain a lot of honey. Physically inspecting the frames before harvest is a more accurate guide. Not so much a brood check, but a Flow frame check.

I’m not doing any brood checks at this time of year, unless I think I need to take a look for one reason or another.