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Thread: How much?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Lexington, KY, USA
    Posts
    504

    Question

    Hi,
    Well we are still new to this but now have some other questions. We have two hives that have diffent work characteristics. Both hives have two deeps for brood. The one we started this year is very busy and is working on the second honey super. The one from last year is working on the first honey super and will get another one next week but they are slower. All supers were given with foundation only. We are in a residential neighborhood with many flower gardens and some woods. Questions: 1. How long should we wait to take honey off?
    2. How much should we leave to feed through the winter with not much snow and temps into the teens Fahrenheit, hives are protected by hedges and water in a creek 30' away.
    3. We are thinking of buying an extractor but want to wait into August for sale prices. Will Mid August be too late to extract?
    Thanks. Take care and have fun.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Central Square, NY, Oswego County
    Posts
    814

    Post

    I usually leave the honey on the hives till mid september. I also leave an equivelet of one and a half deep full of honey. The bees up here (Central New York) need about 130 lbs of honey for winter. As spring arives take a look and see if the bees are all the way up into the inner cover. If they are then you need to feed in the spring. But Since your in a "warm" area ( I go down close to -30F in winter with 7 feet of snow) a full dept supper should be enough.
    Dan

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    mountain home, ar, usa
    Posts
    378

    Post

    >1. How long should we wait to take honey off?

    Once honey is capped over with wax, it is ready to eat/extract. Most people say to try to have 80% capped, or more (so that water content is low, so it won't ferment). I like to take it off in September when it's cool, but most people can't wait that long cause they're anxious to get the honey.

    >2. How much should we leave to feed through the winter with not much snow and temps into the teens Fahrenheit, hives are protected by hedges and water in a creek 30' away.

    I live on the border of AR/MO, so not too far away. I make sure the entire hive (with 2 deeps) weighs 65 pounds minimum. But I also keep the hives in groups of 4 with 3" thick insulation on top to reduce honey consumption.

    3. We are thinking of buying an extractor but want to wait into August for sale prices. Will Mid August be too late to extract?

    You can scrape honey from the comb without having to buy an extractor right away. That's what I do, and I think it's easier anyway. 'Course, I use plastic frames so they're reusable. You can wait and extract them next year if you want... but after a year or so they start to crystilize like they would in a jar.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Lexington, KY, USA
    Posts
    504

    Post

    Hi bjerm2 and Curry,
    A bit late but thanks for your information. In the meantime, a friend brought a big 2 frame reversible extractor over that he has not used for a long time and lets me use it. So far, however, we have had a lot of company and the operation is at a standstill. We have two hives, the red and blue team. They are marked on the hive in those colors. Blue is a year old and survived last winter with honey left over and I think that is the reason why they are not as active as the red team that was installed in April this year. Red now has three medium supers that were foundation only and have the third one at 50%. The blue team is still working on the first honey super that is now about 60%. We will extract late August after our "tourist" season is over and then I will be faced with a queen replacement question for the blue team. Take care and have fun.

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