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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Udall, KS USA
    Posts
    20

    Default Extracting tips and advice, help!

    I had two hives that didn't make it, first winter with bees. I decided to extract most of the honey before putting in new bees, there were full supers on both hives and a lot in the second of two brood boxes as well.

    Question 1: I bought a hand crank two frame extractor and the honey doesn't want to spin out of the frames very well. Is temperature a big factor? I'm doing it in my kitchen at room temp, 70 degrees more or less. Finally got out a space heater to set near the operation, and it seems to be helping some, but it is still not spinning out very well. Any suggestions?

    Question 2: After reading other comments on the bees not being interested in the honey frames due to flow being on, what should i do with my frames? Just put them back in the hives for the new crop of bees to deal with? New packages arriving this coming Saturday.

    Thank you for any help!

    Diana

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Woodland, Alabama
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: Extracting tips and advice, help!

    Diana,

    Honey temperature is a very big factor in extraction. If you could get the frames up to 90 to 100 F you will have better luck.

    Assuming that your hives did not fail due to foul brood. I would put the extracted frames on the hive for your new packages to clean up/feed on. With it uncapped, they will quickly clean-up/use any leftovers.

    You could also not extract any more today, give your bees a BIG head start honey wise, and let them decide if they need the honey while they are getting established. If they don't need it they won't uncap it. In a few weeks you could pull the honey, it will be 90 odd degrees in temp, and extract with (relative) ease.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Cupertino, CA, USA
    Posts
    280

    Default Re: Extracting tips and advice, help!

    Yes, temperature makes a huge difference. I made a very big cardboard box to enclose (insulate) plastic boxes of frames, put a space heater inside with a thermostatically controlled outlet box inside, (you can't trust the thermostat in those cheapo space heaters). Set it for 95F and leave it overnight. The frames extract effortlessly next day.

    I have my spun frames out for the bees to clean up and there is a good flow on. That just means that fewer bees do the cleanup and it takes them a few days longer. It is being cleaned up, plus there is no full blown feeding frenzy. I put the boxes of frames on ant moats so the ants don't try to help out.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Udall, KS USA
    Posts
    20

    Default Re: Extracting tips and advice, help!

    Thank you both, that helps a lot! We had a miserable day of extracting and only got half finished. Will rethink based on your input.

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