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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Atlanta, Ga
    Posts
    103

    Default Should I remove a brood box?

    I had two hives, #1 was doing great, #2 lost the queen and had less than two frames of bees left. #1 had a deep and two supers full of honey (for winter feed). I took the deep from #2 and put it on top of the #1 deep (below the two supers). So now I have a hive with two deep boxes and two supers. Should I remove one of the deeps for winter? If so, should I pick and choose what frames to leave in the deep for the bees? Not sure how many frames of honey/pollen/brood they need for the winter.

    Thanks for any advise!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    5,448

    Default Re: Should I remove a brood box?

    How much winter stores varies from one place to another so you'll only know that once you taken them through a winter, but also you could ask some locals. But too much feed is better then not enough!

    My own preferance is to reduce the hive to just what is nessecary to house the bees plus the required food stores, where I am that's 2 deeps. Too much room can allow problems such as condensation, harborage for pests, etc. Having said that, some people would dissagree and like to go through winter with a large hive with many boxes, although it's less commonly done.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Atlanta, Ga
    Posts
    103

    Default Re: Should I remove a brood box?

    Cool thanks for the info Oldtimer. I'll probably leave them the way they are, I would rather not disturb them if not needed. The temps here are dropping.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Massillon, Ohio
    Posts
    3,297

    Default Re: Should I remove a brood box?

    I agree to leave it as is. In Atlanta I would think that you could probably get through winter with one deep or a deep + medium just fine, as long as they have enough honey stored up.

    You will probably have a lot of capped honey left over in the spring. It will come in handy if you would like to do an early split and get back to 2 colonies.
    To everything there is a season....

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Elkton, Giles, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    1,246

    Default Re: Should I remove a brood box?

    Depends on what's in the box you inserted in the other hive. If there were several deep frames of honey, and they were essentially centered, you may be okay. If the frames were essentially empty above the lower brood nest, that wouldn't be wise. Separating the cluster from their overhead honey should be avoided. We do sometimes get periods in Jan that keep the cluster tight enough to be immobilized. We should have a few mild days in the next two weeks to either rearrange the frames or remove the box without seriously disrupting the cluster below.
    Walt

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