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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Williston, NC, USA
    Posts
    1,779

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    I just put together 30 Illinois (medium) frames & foundation. I intend to gradually convert over to all medium supers, using them for brood boxes as well as honey supers. Do I vary the number of frames or do I go all 9 frame or 8 frame or what? At present my brood boxes are 10 frames and my honey supers are 9 frame because I've found the bees do, in fact, draw the comb out deeper in the 9 frame. How many Illinois (medium) supers should I dedicate to brood?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,320

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    >I just put together 30 Illinois (medium) frames & foundation. I intend to gradually convert over to all medium supers, using them for brood boxes as well as honey supers.

    It works well for me.

    >Do I vary the number of frames or do I go all 9 frame or 8 frame or what?

    What are you rasing? If you want comb honey 9 or 8 frame will make comb too thick to fit in the boxes that most suppliers sell. So I'd use 10 frame. If you want to extract I would do 9 frames. I wouldn't do 8 frames until you have drawn comb to start with. But I haven't done it much at all actually. I like the combs to space them because you don't have to put different spacers in the hives.

    >At present my brood boxes are 10 frames and my honey supers are 9 frame because I've found the bees do, in fact, draw the comb out deeper in the 9 frame.

    I've tried 9 frames in the brood nest and did not like it. I run 10 frames in the brood and 9 in the supers myself.

    >How many Illinois (medium) supers should I dedicate to brood?

    Three mediums is equal to two deeps. So it depends on where you are (more in the north and less in the south) and what kind of managment you want to use. Unlimited brood nest would require four boxes. Standard (2 deep boxes) would be three medium boxes. In the south you could get by with two boxes. Of course this also depends on how many frames you use in the brood nest. 9 frames is a lot less room for brood than 10 frames. If you put 9 frames in three boxes that's three less frames of brood.

    I just use all mediums and no excluder so I don't really count. The brood nest grows to whereever it grows to. What's above that is supers.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Williston, NC, USA
    Posts
    1,779

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    Thanks, Michael, you've confirmed what I thought would be correct. I know some people have only 9 frames in their brood boxes, but my bees don't seem to like that and start building "frames" between. I extract my honey--use wired foundation--and have been doing 9 frames in my honey supers so I'll stick with it. I'd love not to use queen excluders and I've been told that "the queen won't cross over the honey in the brood box," but I recently found eggs in the one honey super I've put on. When those eggs hatch, will the bees clean the cells out and refill them with honey?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,320

    Post

    >Thanks, Michael, you've confirmed what I thought would be correct. I know some people have only 9 frames in their brood boxes, but my bees don't seem to like that and start building "frames" between.

    I have that problem sometimes, but more often just fat areas that protrude and when juggling the brood nest around they end up blocking other brood that can't emerge.

    >I extract my honey--use wired foundation--and have been doing 9 frames in my honey supers so I'll stick with it.

    That's what I do.

    >I'd love not to use queen excluders and I've been told that "the queen won't cross over the honey in the brood box," but I recently found eggs in the one honey super I've put on.

    You've probably also heard she won't cross an excluder but that's not true either. She will if she really wants to.

    A wall of capped honey usualy discourages her. There are only two conditions where she will lay in the supers no matter what else you do, and that's because she ran out of room for brood in the brood nest or she ran out of room for drones in the brood nest.

    >When those eggs hatch, will the bees clean the cells out and refill them with honey?

    Probably. Unless she lays in them again.
    --------------------------------
    Things that discourage queens in the supers:

    9 frames. The wider spacing is what the bees naturally do in honey storage areas, so the queen is more likely to sense that this is not the brood nest.

    A honey crown. The bees usually mainain a crown of honey over the brood area that stops the queen from expanding. Her instincts are to stay in one area.

    Plenty of room. As long as she has plenty of empty cells to lay in (in the brood nest) she's more likely to stay in the brood nest.

    Odd sized comb in the supers. 7/11 foundation is between worker and drone size and the queen is reluctant to lay in it. When she does it will be drones, but she usually doesn't. You can buy 7/11 from Walter T. Kelly. It's only available in medium and shallow and only in thin surplus but I've extracted it many times with no wires in it. The larger cells actually extract quicker.

    Anything that blocks the center of the brood nest. http://website.lineone.net/~dave.cus...udertypes.html see the "Plain Plywood" entry.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Williston, NC, USA
    Posts
    1,779

    Post

    Thanks. "Crown of honey" is the term I was looking for but I couldn't remember what it was called. Maybe she did go into the super because of no room in the brood box--this is the one that was chock full that I made into a 2 queen colony. I'll have to check out that 7/11 foundation--I need to order more anyway--so I'll give it a try.

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