Very nice love the set up
@Ssgregory97 have you got horses? Horses and cattle apparently like hives as a scratching post. Bees don’t like their hives being used as a scratching post…especially after the hive has been pushed over…
Thanks, no horses though. The youngest takes lessons so I should say no horses yet. Ha. I am thinking maybe a fainting goat soon but I would build a fenced in run for her. I do let the chickens and ducks out but only when we are with them, they like to socialize then go back in their runs. I get the bees this week, I have left the hive boxes out on the stand to weather and to ensure it holds up in the wind. I will be adding the ground cover this week before Friday too, I am thinking of going with some type of stone vs mulch maybe that will keep other insects away. I will post pics when it is all completed.
Chickens are fine with bees
As for stone vs mulch, I’m not sure what bugs and insects you are needing to deal with but if it is ants you will be needing water, grease, borax or something along those lines…Check the different topics/threads on this forum and you will come across a number of discussions on dealing with pests etc.
As for the question/comments to @Dawn_SD about the paving vs stone vs mulch etc, my view is to give thought to what you think will be best under foot. You want something that will help you keep stable footing and not worry about rolling an ankle. One thing I learnt this season was that slugs liked to eat the bees. As far as I could tell it was only the dead bees, and they didn’t try to get inside the hive (at least not that I noticed). Cockroaches can sometimes be an issue with hives (warm roof recess) so just keep in mind that while you might deter one pest you might create conditions for another…each to their own
I agree completely. Of the 3 major ligaments in the ankle, I have already completely destroyed two in my left ankle. I can’t afford to damage the last one, so I am very aware of what I am standing on when I need to lift heavy objects.
My preference is thus for paving or a solid surface. In our Community Garden, we have mulch. I am constantly worried up there, as mulch is very good at hiding gopher holes, and the gophers seem to love that garden!
Thanks for the heads-up on the rosin and the temperatures. I am located in Central Southern New South Wales.
I guess I will sand frame 9 down so it will fit. Don’t want that cross combing stuff. I actually had 9 frames in today when I installed my nuc and wondered why it was so tight and then I figured out oh, dummy, it’s an 8 frame box so I took one out. There is a ton of stuff to learn and a ton of tricks that just come with experience.
I would not advise that, unless you are willing to shave/sand every single frame. That can be a bit tricky when they are covered with bees! If you do it as you describe, you will mess up the bee space of the outer frames, and you risk rolling (= killing and maiming) bees as you pull out the first frame during an inspection.
I would say about one time in 4, if I put 8 frames in a Flow brood box, I will get some brace comb or double comb, and it is almost always on the frame against the hive wall. There are several ways to avoid this.
- Always put drawn comb in the outer frames. If you have a 5-frame nucleus, usually 2 of those will be drawn comb with honey/pollen and no brood. I would consider putting those against the wall, then the empty frames (2 on one side and one on the other) either side of the brood nest. Don’t put brood against the wall - it may chill. If you don’t want to do that, put frames with wax foundation in the outer positions - they are less like to get brace comb.
- Put a follower board in the brood box until the outer frames are drawn. This is narrower than a frame, and so it has less risk of rolling bees. You would put 8 frames and one follower board into the hive against one wall. Usually you can remove it when most of the outer frame has fully drawn comb on it - about 2 to 6 weeks. These are the ones I have:
Ok, I will just leave the 8 frames in the box.
Thanks Dawn, I will look for a follower board. Man, there is a ton to learn, nothing too hard, just a lot of info.
Make sure they are tightly shoulder to shoulder in the middle of the box, unless you have a follower board in there. The bees will draw out some extra comb on the outer frame to correct the bee space in that gap, but that is perfect, because they normally store honey on that frame anyhow (unless they are africanized, in which case they lay brood wall-to-wall! )
I have used two strips of wood to block the sides and prevent bees using the gap for access and egress. (Note the strips of wood on top and in front are just to demonstrate the size of strips I used).
I’m hoping to be complete with setup, and ready for all in early May.
John, that’s exactly what I had to do. They, flow, are making these boxes too big. For the price we pay, they need to correct this, more quality control please.
But, flow did at least respond to me and they sent me some come guide strips which were the perfect size to use just like what you did here John. Thanks to Kieran at flow.
Hi Chris, Good to know that I’m on the right track. Step by step…
Chris, the guide strips were easy to do, and I’d rather have a bit of space than none.
That space needs to be less than a quarter inch though
I like the extra space and the box fits with any 8 frame langstroth. If the flow frames are ideally bee spaced, then we just have to cope with how they fit. It would be rather awkward if the box would be a different size. The Andersons made the right decision.
Maybe they should just include a couple of spare strips.
Hey Dawn, I just did my one week inspection of my hive and I checked my checker boarding and it is going unbelievably great. The bees have drawn out every new frame except for one and they are starting on it now. Every new empty foundationless frame has been drawn out as straight as a string. Everything looks perfect. I have my additional brood box with8 empty frames ordered and it should be here in a couple of days and when it arrives, I will add it on top. Should I take out some of my drawn frames and mix them into my new box or just treat that new top box as a honey super???
Major congratulations, Chris. Glad that you didn’t ned to be anxious about the checkerboarding.
I would wait, and use the usual golden rules. You need enough bees to fill and defend the new space. I would not add any more boxes until:
Every frame has fully drawn comb, and
The comb is 80% full of honey, pollen or brood, and
Every frame is well covered with bees.
Golden rules for a strong hive.
Hello from Transylvania