I’m a first time bee keeper this year and I started with packaged bees in the beginning of June. I’m up to two brood boxes. I noticed room was getting tight in there so I added a honey super. It is the beginning of Aug. Here In MI. My question is, should I have not added the super to give them room and store more food for winter? I ask only because some say yes add the super , and others are shrinking their hive now. I’m confused
If they are tight on room and still bringing in nectar, I would add a conventional super with no excluder: Chances are, being this late, they aren’t going to cap anything but the conventional super and frames can be left in place for winter feed with no excluder, provided they draw most of it out.
he most important thing to do right now is check for and deal with Varroa mites. Alcohol wash is best.
I did decide not to put exclude on. I checked for varroa mites 2 weeks ago and found 8 per 300 bees( but i used powered sugar. I will use alcohol next time) what I read single digit numbers is good. Should I treat soon before winter anyway? Thank you so much for the info. It’s greatly appreciated.
Treat now. These are the bees that will be raising your winter bees, so they need to be in good health.
OK. thank you so much!
Just thoughts as I don’t know your climate and conditions about foraging. A lot of beginners make the mistake of giving a nuc too much room than what they need and by doing that they can actually make it hard on the bees. Bees love ultra-high density housing, in human terms, in the hive.
I would only add a super when 85% of all of the cells are in use for stores. The same applies in the brood area, add a second box when 85% of the calls are in use with brood or stores, but then I would only add a second brood box if others around you are doing it. In your first year I would copy what others around you are doing.
When you add a Flow Hive Super remember to fit the QX so the queen cant lay up there.
Welcome to the forum, you will find heaps of help and information here, some will apply to you and some not because of climate and conditions, remember this site is world wide.
My bees are done for the year. Here is some of my cut comb extracted today:
I would not put a super on now. Just treat for mites as @Red_Hot_Chilipepper says, even if you think you don’t need to do so. I prefer Oxalic Acid vapor, in case you were wondering.
Thank you for the info. I live in Michigan. It’s hot at the moment but that will change in a few months. I bought package bees this spring no nucs.
I was wondering what would be best to use. Thank you
Thank you. I will need the help. Lol
Hey Vickie, If the hive is out of room for stores and strong in bee numbers I would add a super for the simply reason that if there is still foraging happening that will bring in honey for the winter. That is what I used to do where I came from and had double brood boxes and nights of 22F. But I’m now in sub-tropical Qld, Australia, mid winter here and still working my hives in a T shirt and shorts, too warm for a bee suit here.
Are you a Langstroth conventional hive or a Flow Hive?
I have langstroth hive. I also took off reducer the other day because it’s so hot but think I should put it back on. Almost looks like robbing may be going on. Could be because they’re happy to breath or robbing. Not sure yet. Lots of bees in front of it.
It may be bees from that hive getting out to let the brood cool, Are you getting bearding late afternoon into the evening?
Look for a real bar room brawl at the entrance to indicate robbing, bees trying to sting one another, a fight to the death.
If there is good foraging robbing doesn’t normally happen.
I was until I took reducer off. I just went to check on them and I think I’m good. I don’t see fighting going on. That’s a good sign right? I think I worry to much. Just don’t want to doing anything wrong lol.
The other possible is juast orienting of cleansing flights, bee flying around the hive then returning.
Relax sweets, I’ll hang here for a half hour, just gone 12:20am here. A reducer will increase the internal hive temp. being your Summer it shouldn’t be needed. What is your temp in the shade and time now?
It’s 10:30 am and almost 80 degrees F already. I live in MI and it’s the hottest time of summer right now.They look like they’re doing good now. I see them bringing pollen in. I probably freaked them out by ripping off the front door lol.
I would bet they are hot in the brood area, maybe fanning air into the hive and trying to keep cool. There should be plenty of foraging available and unless you had the hive open this morning I would doubt on robbing. It tends to happen when there is a deart and a hive is running out of store so they rob yours.
Don’t close the entrance till in the Autumn, I never close mine up as my winters are not cold, like it is winter here now and I was at my hives today in shorts and a T shirt. But of course yours is colder but happy to give you tips on keeping the hive warm closer to your winter. I moved up here from nights in the 20’s F.