I am a first year beekeeper, I purchased the Flow Hive Classic (7 frames). I installed a bee package in early May. The colony was doing very well so I installed the Super on June 15th. The colony looked like it was getting ready to swarm so I added a 2nd brood box on June 30th. I will do an inspection of the 2nd brood box this week (July 6th). Question: Should I also inspect the frames in the Honey Super? I am seeing (from the back window) the cells filling with honey in four of the frames. Can’t wait to see the cells capped so I can extract honey for the first time. Thanks for your comments. Michael
Were all the cells in the brood box having 80% in use for stores and brood before you added the super? And again before adding the second brood box? Don’t assess what you see from the widows as to the amount of nectar and capped honey in the super. The only way to know is to take the frames out of the box and look at both sides of every frame. Any photos you can post will be a help for us to see what is happening.
Thanks for your response.
Yes, the cells were filled with honey and brood before I added the Super.
When looking through the windows after adding the Super, you could see the box was jam packed with bees. I had a local beekeeper of 20+ years come and do and inspection with me.
The original brood box had lots of cross combing, so much so that comb would tear when trying to take the frames out. We decided to leave well enough alone and not take a chance on killing the queen.
He said the bees looked to be ready to swarm but couldn’t be sure since we didn’t take frames out to look for swarm cells so he suggested we add a second brood box. He also suggested feeding the bees for a few weeks to assist in the production of wax. We added the second brood box and seems like the colony has more room and is adjusting well. I plan to open the hive today to inspect the new brood box and make sure they are drawing comb. I will take photos and attach them to the forum.
New Canaan, Connecticut USA
Hello Michael, You have answered my concerns that you might have been supplying too much space too soon for the colony.
At some point you will need to tackle the first brood box to eliminate the cross combing so that you can remove all the frames for inspections. Maybe get the help from the guy who has helped you already. Here in Australia it is a requirement that a frames can be removed for inspection for good hive management.
Enjoy your journey in bee keeping, a really rewarding interest.