New Journey into Bee keeping

Either way im not expecting much in the way of a honey harvest this year so the bees can have free reign in a dual brood setup, possibly with a super. We will see, Second season i may change my mind regarding broodbox numbers but at least I have choice.

Summer has only just begun. You never know, you might get a honey flow before winter, which seems a LONG way away.

I can tell you what I would do to get some decent honey right now. I would cut the drone brood out of that top frame you’re holding, before cutting that honey, comb & all out to crush & strain. You might even like to save some as comb honey. Is the top 2 photos the same frame? If not, that means you’ll get a decent amount of honey out, with 2 frames. Then you can clean the frame to get ready to fit foundation to it.


I have been utilising a mix of foundation and foundationless so im able to take advantage of the benefits of each. However if i ever do a split on a hive ill probably just establish its frames with pure foundation.

Its a learning curve noticing the behaviors of each hive and the potential pitfalls. Drone brood patterns and such.

The two top photos are indeed the same frame and the next two are another. Both are foundationless. Carving out the honeycomb is tempting. Especially for Christmas, I may do just that because more space for them to draw is always welcome.

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Hi Everyone.

Another update on my bees. Sunday was a beautiful sunny day so we all decided to don the Beesuits, open the hives and inspect thier Progress.

Both hives have now fully utilised all the frame faces in thier combined primary and secondary brood boxes.

The Carniolan flow super remains untouched but I feel its only a matter of time before the bees are forced to expand up. Todays photos depict the bees in the complete flow window. Im hoping for the bees to do what they can with drawing out the frames, any honey from these frames will be a literal sweet bonus.

The italian hive with an additional box has allowed me to perform a similar frame manipultion. Sloting in empty frames where i could to give the bees a feeling of space while throwing what resources i felt prudent further up.

Above picture the bees are a little thined out due to smoking.

Im thinking of relaxng the inspections to a fortnighty routine. I however would like to strike a happy medium with catching the possible pitfalls and giving the bees time to do what they naturally do.

Until next time thats all from me, i wish everyone all the best with thier Bees.



It is good to see the bees crawling around the Flow Frames like this, a double brood box hive has a lot of space to work with. Being further south though It is pretty common to go with two broods.

However I wouldnt add the Flow Super until the second brood is pretty well built out with comb and has a strong population. As of the 7d ago pics it looks like they are really putting their time and resources into building out that second brood box. So seeing the bees up in the Flow Super too suggests that when the time comes to expand further they will move quickly.

Such great update summaries for your beekeeping, a nice journey to follow. Just thought i’d chime in.


Thank you for your insight @KieranPI, its much appreciated :wink: .

Both hives really do need the space that the 3rd box can offer. The Italian hive bee numbers were reduced in the photo because it was captured shortly after smoking.

My main focus for this season is to get the bees to draw as much as they can utilising the high population that three boxes allow.

Little bit of an update regarding my two hives,

Flow hive has the bees consolidating all effots on the two brood boxes. Ive tried encouraging the bees to draw out the flow frames without any success. I suspect that the carniolans feel a combination that they dont necassarily require thier workers to utilise resources for drawing more comb. They also are avoiding the foriegn plastic of the frames like the plaque.

My attempt at a solution was that I pulled apart some fresh comb and proceeded with pressing it into the the flow frames. With so little bur comb i had to find something.

I have conventional frames dotted between three flow frames. With the frustrations of little progress, i do understand patence is key. Although with the light gaps the bees are chewing away at the shelf and flow frame key cover. (If it gets horrid i my need to source a replacement).

My Carnies have solidly filled out two boxes with ample honey. (harvested 10kgs and stored away another 10 for winter).

My Italians have worked the two brood boxes and thier super, both brood boxes are incrediby brood focused. Honey stores are really a contrast to the Carniolans, in that thier honey stores are little dribs and drabs on numerous frames. It is interesting to see the behavioural differences between the two hives.

Notes Going forward - Personally my experience with the flow frames is non existent thus far. My choice with dual brood orientation has probably been the root cause of this. I dont know how much in the way of progress I will see considering the bees Behavior going forward this season.

Sorry I havent replied sooner, I understand you are wanting them to have the space. Down south it is pretty common to hear bees to only fill up two brood boxes in the first year.

Are you harvesting from the brood boxes the Flow Frames are on top off. Bees will generally fill out stickies rather then expand and if this happens regularly they wont get to surplus of needing to store honey in the Flow Super.

Adding a Flow Super too soon generally leads to more of a delay, We generally suggest adding a Flow Super on top of one brood box first then a add the second brood box between once the bees have filled out majority of the Flow Frames, this sets the Flow Frames up as being stickies from the get go and allows more so for the bees to continue to expand. The bees still need to build out the Flow Frames with wax, it would be good to know if they have done this at all. Seeing some discolouration on the Flow Frames in cells can be a sign that nectar was stored there at one point, if so they might be using the extra space more so as a staging area to help with reducing moisture and then bringing this down to be closer to the brood.

In all honesty rather than forcing the bees to try and expand you might find removing the Flow Super for a few weeks works better, then re-adding this to the hive should there be time left in the season.

I didn’t have much luck initially. Although I don’t have 2 brood boxes like you do. I started with a nuc in Nov. By Feb, the brood box was filled and I added the flow super. My bees were spending time up there but not much activity and I removed it by April/May. In hindsight maybe my population wasn’t brimming enough to add the super when I did. I added the super back in July when the population grew (wattles were in full bloom) and they filled the super fairly quickly since then. :slight_smile: