When to put on Supers

My first attempt at beekeeping did not survive the MI winter. I had two brood boxes and never got any honey last year. The bees were busy building frames and then storing honey for themselves. After they perished, I harvested the frames and stored them.

This spring I got another pack of bees (not a Nuc since I had all the frames). I put them into the brood box with two frames half filled with honey from last year. Several weeks later they were filling up 60-70% of the box. So I added the second brood box and put in the rest of the frames I had. Two more frames were pretty full of honey.

I was pretty excited that I would get lots of honey as they did not need to spend all their energy building frames this year–and they were starting with a bit of honey!

The bees have been thriving all summer and I added the Honey Super three weeks ago. I have seen 10-20 bees up there where I peek in the windows but that is all. No honey!?! So, I inspected the hive a few days ago and there is a ton of capped brood. Also, they seem to have filled the four frames that were half full of honey.

I am waiting to treat for mites until I have harvested honey, but it is now August and I am not seeing honey in the super. The bees look happy and healthy, no beetles or other bugs. Anticipating some honey…

Did I put the Super on too soon?
Should I put the Super on BEFORE the second brood box, get my honey from the early flow, then put the 2nd brood box on?

Any thoughts?

If you have drawn comb in your second box then I guess you could do that and feed them sugar in the fall to get them ready for winter, otherwise, let them have first dibs on the honey and only take the excess in the flow super if they have excess.

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