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To add or not to add more frames in the brood box?


#1

I’ve had my bees for approximately 8 weeks, and have no traces of honey in the Flohive. They appear to be multiplying rapidly and the broodbox seems very overcrowded to me. Should I remove the feeder and use that space for 2 new frames, or hold out hope that they’ll eventually fill the top now that the bottom is so full? I fear that I’ve seen a few possible swarm cells. I’ve seen some controversy on supplement feeding with the sugar water, so I’ve only done it a few times after being advised to after installation, so I’m not really using the feeder. Any advice is appreciated!


#2

Other beekeepers in your Fort Worth area, like @Martydallas use two brood boxes, I think. Do you belong to a local bee club? Do you have a beekeeping mentor?

I assume you are using a “frame feeder”. I would definitely remove it if you have a nectar flow, and put normal frames in that place. What do your local beekeepers say about current nectar availability? If there is lots, you don’t need to feed.

Photos would help. Bees make “play cups” all the time. They may not have a queen in them. This article might help you to decide whether to worry or not:
http://www.wbka.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/wbka-booklet-english-PDF.pdf

They might, but did you pre-treat the plastic Flow frames with wax? Lots of people on this forum have found that very helpful. Plastic is not natural for bees, a bit of wax on it makes it smell of home.
http://forum.honeyflow.com/t/my-bees-arent-using-the-flow-frames/7799?u=dawn_sd


#3

everyone in the north texas are I have talked to use at least 2 brood boxes, but every situation is different. Also I would not put the Flow frames on until the Brood boxes are busting at there seams so they will want to move upward. Also you should never be feeding your bees with the Flow Frames on, becouse then all you will have is your sugar water in your flow frames. I am part of the Colon County Bee Club Great club meetings every second monday evening of the month http://cchba.org/


#4

Hello Courtney - I am just north of you (in Argyle). With the 8 frame brood box that comes with the Flow Frame, you’ll need another brood box in North Texas. Sounds like you only have 6 frames in your brood box if a feeder is taking up the space of two frames - you’ll definitely want a lot more bees than that to make honey. You may not get excess honey the first year, many people do not (the bees started working my Flow Frames last year, but only closed a lot of the cells before they started storing more honey for winter below in the brood box. If you need another brood box, matching Western Red Cedar boxes are available from beethinking.com.


#5

I will check them out! Sounds like that needs to be my next step! Thank you so much!


#6

That definately makes sense about the feeder. I’m not in any clubs and have no mentor. I’ll work on that for sure. Thank you so much for your information!


#7

about where are you located, I will look at your profile in just a moment to see if you posted it.

OK, I see your in FW, I am over in our office today and get over this way quite a bit. I use to be they main Architect for Cook Children’s. Working for another firm right now. Let me know if you would like to do coffee sometime.

I am in North Dallas. If I can be of any help, I would Love to. My mentor has been the best thing for me, so if you can find one, I am sure it would be great for you.

I look at everyone here as a mentor and a few more on here as expert and what they say goes. A finical mentor is great because they can show you small thinks thay only make since when you can see it live or touch it.


#8

I’m in East Dallas and have two brood boxes in operation. I was pretty conservative and did not install my “waxed” flow frames until just a couple weeks ago (1 year from initial package installation). Bees immediately took to the flow frames and I am seeing wax comb construction. If my bees follow @Martydallas 's timetable, then I’m hoping for my first honey harvest some time this May. Right now, I have huge activity at the entrance with pollen coming in. Bees are also drinking more water than ever out of my simple bee “watercooler.” i attend meetings at the Trinity Valley Beekeepers Association (tvbees.org) — good group!

Stay patient!


#9

Thank you for that offer! I am near Eagle Mountain and believe I’ve found a couple of mentors since posting. I’m honestly shocked at how much there is to learn, as well as how much I’ve already missed in my many hours of preparing! It’s all very enjoyable and worth it though!


#10

Yes I’m still learning every single day and every time I think I’ve learned something I realize I may have learned it incorrectly. It takes multiple times to beat it into this old head of mine.

I’m actually re-queening a hive this weekend. I will squish her later this afternoon and put in the new queen likely on Sunday.

Her laying pattern is not good and they are putting supersedure cells in the middle of some of the frames so I know they know she’s not doing well also.


#11

Just to pass on, my mentor Brad and Ken shared this video with me on how to help understand if your queen is going to be accepted or not thought I would pass this on. https://youtu.be/vCpbDMKWKs8