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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Marshall county, AL
    Posts
    792

    Default Need some advice and help for a new bee dude

    Sorry for the post but I don't know enough bee terminology yet to use the search feature.

    I got a swarm from a friend last Wednesday. He put them in an old brood box with new frames. Thursday they left the swarmed again. Friday my mom found them in a burning pile out behind the barn. I got a new brood box, new frames, all new equipment with the exception of one frame of drawn comb in the center of the box, and put the bees in it, and moved them to a better location. I was pretty convinced that there was no queen with them. Yesterday there were no eggs in the old drawn comb and I could see comb being drawn on both frames on either side of the old frame of comb. Today I decided to find the queen if she was in the hive. I did find her, she was on the 2nd frame in the box, which the bees had completely covered in comb. She was laying eggs and had her queen thing going on. The first and 2nd frames have eggs on them. Some of the frames on the right side of the box have nectar (?) and pollen in the comb the bees have drawn.

    Questions:

    1) Should I move the frames with eggs to the center of the box or is it okay for them to lay from right to left? I thought I had read that they worked from the center out towards the sides.

    2) Is there supposed to be nectar in the brood box? I guess that's what it is, it's definitely a liquid inside the comb.

    3) How many of you run 2 brood boxes per hive? I have talked to folks who said one is enough and some who say you must have two.

    4) How do I determine when to put the 2nd brood box on the hive, or when to put a honey super on?

    I promise I'm reading all I can and hope to keep the stupid questions to a minimum. I wish I knew someone local who would take me under their wing. I like to ask questions....... I'm better at asking in person or over the phone than I am at typing.

    Oh, I now have 3 hives. I picked up 2, 3# packages yesterday. This is fascinating stuff. I'm a little OCD too so.........

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Alabama
    Posts
    41

    Default Re: Need some advice and help for a new bee dude

    welcome to the fourm there is like six or seven members in alabama now i am sure someone will be able to help u i cant two reasons one i just started and two i use top bar hives good luck though

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    OKC, OK USA
    Posts
    2,870

    Default Re: Need some advice and help for a new bee dude

    1. I would leave them alone and let them do their thing.

    2. Yes

    3. I run two deeps but that is as much a regional thing as it is a personal preference.

    4. When 80% of the foundation in the first box id drawn slap on the second, same with the super.
    Mike Forbes
    Red Dirt Apiaries

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Auburntown, TN USA
    Posts
    239

    Default Re: Need some advice and help for a new bee dude

    No need to move combs to the center. They will set up the brood nest the way they want it. They need nectar and pollen in the brood nest to feed the brood. One box may be enough in Alabama. Is it a deep? If so, when they get 8 frames drawn out, add a medium box with frames and foundation. If there is no nectar coming in at that point, you will need to feed 1:1 sugar syrup.

    Welcome and good luck!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Marshall county, AL
    Posts
    792

    Default Re: Need some advice and help for a new bee dude

    Thanks for the help! I think it is a deep box. I'll have to look up the measurements and make sure. Is there any way to estimate how long it will be before they will need another box? There is comb drawn on at least 5 frames. It's not completely drawn on all 5 but there is some amount of comb on five. I guess you guys are talking about having 8 frames completely drawn?

    What benefits are there to running a 2 deep brood box? Are there drawbacks to running two?

    I guess this is a naive question but when would there not be nectar during warm weather in Alabama? I'm sure there wouldn't be much during drought conditions and I don't know what plants bees use and what they don't, but I would have thought in our area (northeast AL) there was something blooming 9 months per year. BTW, they have all the holly shrubs wrapped up right now. We have an enormous amount of Chinese Privet around this area too. When it blooms they should be feasting on it.

    A question of a different sort. Do you guys build your own bee woodenware? I'm a fluent woodworker and have all the tools and such to do so. Some of the unassembled hives and frames I've seen appear to be low cost but I haven't priced the shipping yet. Is there a "best cheap" place to buy hive bodies, frames and foundation?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    grand rapids, michigan
    Posts
    447

    Default Re: Need some advice and help for a new bee dude

    Brad I am a newbee and a woodworker too. I've just finished building all of my wooden ware. Except the frames. I bought those but might make my medium frames. With decent wood working skills the woodenware is quite easy to build and rewarding too. There are complete plans on this site.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    OKC, OK USA
    Posts
    2,870

    Default Re: Need some advice and help for a new bee dude

    Yes 8 frames fully drawn before the next box goes on. I have always run two deeps, it is how I was taught. Pull my supers in Sept. and let them backfill the top brood box with honey from the fall flow for winter. Your flows are going to be very particular to your immediate area so I can't really say. I don't build my own, and I get my woodenware from Mann Lake due to free shipping on anything over $100. I prefer Brushy Mountain but on my last order I saved over $100 with the free shipping.
    Mike Forbes
    Red Dirt Apiaries

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Marshall county, AL
    Posts
    792

    Default Re: Need some advice and help for a new bee dude

    Quote Originally Posted by frankthomas View Post
    Brad I am a newbee and a woodworker too. I've just finished building all of my wooden ware. Except the frames. I bought those but might make my medium frames. With decent wood working skills the woodenware is quite easy to build and rewarding too. There are complete plans on this site.
    Thanks for the info. The frames are what I can see myself buying also. They are too many tiny parts on them to cut out.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Marshall county, AL
    Posts
    792

    Default Re: Need some advice and help for a new bee dude

    Quote Originally Posted by NasalSponge View Post
    Yes 8 frames fully drawn before the next box goes on. I have always run two deeps, it is how I was taught. Pull my supers in Sept. and let them backfill the top brood box with honey from the fall flow for winter. Your flows are going to be very particular to your immediate area so I can't really say. I don't build my own, and I get my woodenware from Mann Lake due to free shipping on anything over $100. I prefer Brushy Mountain but on my last order I saved over $100 with the free shipping.
    Thanks so much for the info.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    OKC, OK USA
    Posts
    2,870

    Default Re: Need some advice and help for a new bee dude

    YW!
    Mike Forbes
    Red Dirt Apiaries

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