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How can I harvest frames that are not totally full?


Hi, I am a new beekeper, living in Vienna / Austria
I got my first two beehives May.
In our region it is time to do the last harvest and the Varroa-treatment.
My bees seem very busy in the Flow super, but they dont fill it completely, for many weeks it is the same picture, from the rear window you dont see any honey, I pulled out two of the inner frames - they show only partly capped honey.
What can I do ?

<img src="/uploads/honeyflow/original/2X/6/64434ba2d3c1b36c29bbf8ffd02d19b5eb9a6c18.jpeg" width="666" height="500"><img src="/uploads/honeyflow/original/2X/d/d909b1c5ce5e4e7fe5544db94cafe70dffbc0aff.jpeg" width="666" height="500"><img src="/uploads/honeyflow/original/2X/2/220101b7e5483c9c965fdabd0a0f714dc368f483.jpeg" width="666" height="500">

Thank you for help
Greetings from Vienna


Sorry I just noticed that only ohne of my uploaded fotos is shown, l will Traum uploading one by one




Last view into the flowsuper from above
Thanks for help !


Take them off and drain them without bees on. You will take them off anyway, so just do it before harvest. That makes sure no bees are harmed if they are in open cells while moving the frame parts.


Thank you - I thought of doing so
Do you have an advice how to clean and store the empty flowframes during the winter ?


Put them above the inner cover and the bees will rob them out. Once dry, just store then for winter.

If you are robbing them, how much do they have in stores for winter?



Hi Rob
What do you mean with: above the inner cover ?
I got 2 brood boxes and the flow super on top

They have stored honey in the outer frames of the brood boxes, whitch I wont touch
and after “robbing” the honey from the super, l am going to feed them, this is what you ususlly do in our region
Cheers maria


Hi Maria, nice pictures! I think what Rob suggests is to put a harvested Flow frame, on its side, on top of the inner cover yet inside the outer cover. @Rmcpb does a flow frame fit under there, and do you have to shim or prop the frame up to allow the bees to come through the hole in the center of the inner cover to get to the frame? If it doesn’t fit, you can put a medium or shallow box on top of the inner cover and the outer cover/peaked roof on top of that.

This way, they can take all the honey remaining on the Flow frame without other insects or bees from other hives interfering :slight_smile:️


I don’t have a flow hive but an inner cover is just a thin board put above the frames with a hole in it. It is often used for feeding but if you have one of these and put robbed boxes above the bees go up through the hole but don’t seem to recognise it as the same hive. They will rob out the frames above and move the leftover honey down into “their” hive leaving you with dry comb which can be stored over winter.



Thank you so much - both of you !!!


I used a “Bienenflucht” unfortunatly I dont know the engiisch word for it to get bees to move out of the Flowhive a nd did the harvesting the next day.
It was not very much, but I am realy happy it worked !! :grinning:


We call them “bee escapes” - here is one from Bee Thinking here in the US:


Those are great pictures, Maria. They look like my own flow frames, so I am interested in the responses you get!



The problem with doing this with cells that aren’t capped is the moisture content in your resulting honey will be too high and the honey will ferment in storage. Honey that isn’t capped hasn’t been ripened sufficiently by the bees. It will taste ok initially, but will taste horrible when it starts to ferment.

If I have frames that aren’t capped I leave them on the hive over winter, I’ll probably do the same with the flow frames… But appreciate this doesn’t work for everyone.



Maybe I’m too OLD ! Why n How would ?? Why would I use one ??? I’m trying to figure that rational out here … Maybe I’m too tired cooking tonight :wink::+1:.

. No hurry as I don’t posses one of these gadgets yet. :grinning:.

Ta ta,



About bee escapes, Jerry wrote:

Well, back in the UK, we had occasional years with HUGE nectar flows. We had hives sometimes with 4 or 5 supers on top (rare, but it happened). When you do traditional honey extraction, one of the biggest issues is getting the bees off the capped frames, so that you can take them away and uncap/spin etc. We found the easiest way was to put an inner cover below the lowest harvest super, with a bee escape over the hole in the inner cover. The bee escape lets the bees move down out of the honey supers, but they can’t climb back up into them again. One or two days later, you take the supers off, and abracadabra, they have no bees on the frames!! Magic!!! :wink: Then you can steal the honey without removing 10,000 angry bees first! The best war is the one you don’t have to fight. :smile:

Now about your meal, it looks fabulous! If you can remove the garlic, onions and broccoli, I will be right over… :blush: Otherwise my IBS will make me stay near the bathroom. :wink:



See what we can DO about no broccoli. Does all the cabbage, kale n etc mess you up … Pea pods with slice carrots n a shrimp/dill cream sauce work. Let see … No onions or garlic … Wow ! How about greenbeans with a peppery basil n real butter sauce. Pork or chicken could have a lemon/pepper wash n BBQ it !! But just enough to get rid of the pink n not dry it out !

Got to see about some honey. My mom use to do an amazing cabbage/tart apple/ carrot coleslaw with vinegar/mayo/honey combo.

Any of that work for you ?! :wink::+1:.


Cabbage and kale are OK in moderation. Peas are off the menu - shame because I love them! Half a carrot is OK, more can be trouble. Apples unfortunately are off the list, but the rest of the coleslaw sounds great. I am a problem child! :blush:

Green beans in a peppery basil and butter sauce sounds fabulous. I have some wonderful home-grown African Blue Basil that you might like to try in that. A bit like Thai basil, but more assertive. Shrimp and dill cream sauce is great too. I like most meats pinker than allowed, but not raw :slight_smile: I am glad the USDA recently dropped the recommended cooking temperature for pork, it so much better slightly pink and juicy! When should we book our flights, Jerry? :smile: