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Frame Numbering


There was a vague inference, in a post which suggested there was a numbering system for the frames in a hive.
I have searched for this numbering system but one doesn’t come up.
If there is one can someone advise.
If there isn’t one there should be. Even if it something simple like 1,2, 3 …
or A, B, C… numbering from the left facing the front of the box.
Would make it easier to visualise where in the box a particular frame is.


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Evening Busso.

The only numbering I use is facing the hive is 1 thru 10. With both wall frames being #1 (left) n #10 (right). Of course I have 10 frame langs n you have less (8 frame). Not sure this is helpful but how I log positions in my logs … Gerald


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Would seem that there is no official numbering and everyone like @Gerald_Nickel use their own system.I don’t mean to literally burn a number into the frame. Obviously once a frame moves from one box to another for what ever reason eg, checkerboarding then its number would change to the place in the new box it occupies.
@JeffH how do you get on keeping track? Do you just number your hives and not your frames? I think it would help just say record where drone cells or queen cells are. You could record in your diary, queen cells on the frame 17A 5B2 where 17A is the hive No 17 at site A and 5B2 is the 5th frame in second brood box.

Just a thought but I am going to refer to my frames in the simplest way as @Gerald_Nickel does 1 to 8,9 or 10 from left to right facing the front of the hive. I am not anal about this but when your memory starts fading its hard to recall 5 days later whether you saw eggs on the middle frame or was it the frame either side of middle.
We seniors need all the aids we can get LOL


Hi Busso, I know what you mean about us seniors. I don’t number anything. As my SHB strategy, I try to keep all my hives strong by keeping the amount of worker comb up & drone comb down. If I see a hive going backwards, I find out what’s going on & rectify it straight away. If I see a hives population blowing out, I weaken it before it decides to swarm. I generally remember the hives I recently weakened out & I certainly remember the cranky ones:) It’s funny, you always remember the cranky ones.

I can’t see any point whatsoever in numbering the frames. But that’s just me.

The other day I inspected my hives & on a couple of hives I asked myself about the history of those particular hives. I had no recollection of the history of those hives. Anyway they had plenty of bees & honey so I must have done something right with them.


I wanted to just say “Thanks Jeff.” but the pop up say"Your post is too short"
Seems I have to pad all this out just to say thanks. But anyway Jeff thanks.
Think that should keep the popup satisfied


When you find queen cells it helps if you mark their location on the top bar using a drawing pin. You can offset the pin to indicate which side of the frame, and position it above the QC.

Different coloured pins could be used to indicate different aged cells, for example.

I haven’t found it necessary to keep track of drones, eggs etc.


I tried numbering frames last year - too difficult to track so this year I’m using last years colour pen - Blue (more Aqua really) to put a 16 on the frames so I know how old they are.

Our club recommends drawing pins in the frames to mark which frame the Queen is on when doing manipulations just to keep track of her


Yes, same here.
Mark top bars with year and drawing pins indicating where queen cells are.
Eventually you don’t need to bother with year as you can tell when to work a frame out by how dark it is.


Now I really like that :laughing:


Morning Busso n Jeff from up north in Washington state. Spring has sprung n wish I had my bees already. I even tried to buy a full wintered over colony but no Luck !

Yah ! Numbers are only good as you make them. Mine will be to keep my FOGGY brain in order. I only want 4 to 8 hives tops (:smile: good luck at that) I only have so much back yard n that’s going to be pushing the limits.

. Our weather has moved into the mid 50’s now so our flowers, trees n bulbs are popping out in quick succession.

I enjoy reading your comments n others … It’s a great learning n skill pool here.

Have great weekend,


Our willow is still at the shiny silvery stage. Just as well. Snow forecast for the weekend Brrrrrrr


All the cherry trees by me are in bloom - used to be a cherry orchard here 'bouts and still a load of cherry trees in the high street


Wow ! Your fruit trees are even ahead of us over here in Washington State. I looked at my fruit trees yesterday as I needed to add dormant spray to reduce local Apple blight n scabs. The buds are still rather tight at best.


@Gerald_Nickel Strange thing is it only seemed like yesterday the neighbour several doors over’s apple tree was full of Apples - we have such a strange season - we must be 2-3 weeks ahead presently but if we get a fall of snow - the whole lot will go


Here in western Washington we can get groups of mild Wx n even some surprising sunshine. That brings out our fruit tree blooms. Then we get clean night or two that brings on a killing frost that messes with blossom pollination n our bees. We usually won’t get any more of the white fluffy stuff from now on but just possible white frosts to gamble with. Then back to mild n wet ! We are ahead but not as much as you. We have had years our pink flowering purple plum pops out for Valentine’s Day but not this year. Our native Indian plum, early pussy willow n some yellow forsythia are trying now. Thanks for the quick reply,


I haven’t seen any ornamental cherry here at all yet.
Half the apiary crocuses are out. I thought they were early but I’ve just checked the last two years records and they are about the same time.


if you draw a line from Stratford upon Avon to Coventry - I’m in that slightly sheltered valley to the right - perhaps in the shelter we get slightly warmer weather.


All our ornamental plum then cherry trees are still tight. Our quinces are trying now. Our crocus are on the downhill but early daffs are about a week away I would guess ! The fruit plum are even tight yet ! Not seen any leaves of dandelions yet either !