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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Central California
    Posts
    54

    Default Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    I did my first inspection ever today. It was day three after the package install. I mainly did it to remove the bee box and remove the queen cage. When I tried to slide the frames back together I ended up leaving several about a bees width apart because they were totally covered and the bees wouldn't move out of the way. Should I worry or just try to get them back together next week. Here is the video http://youtu.be/r6AHc256bkQ

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Pueblo, Colorado, USA
    Posts
    686

    Default Re: Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    The frames are designed to be next to each other. Push the frames together repeatedly until the bees move out of the way.
    Zone 5a @ 4700 ft. High Desert
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Whitsett, NC
    Posts
    489

    Default Re: Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    Steven,
    You should get the frames pushed all the way back together and then split the space evenly between the two outside frames. You had the right idea about using smoke that will move them but also by moving two frames together at a time gently bump the bees on the frame with the other frame and they will move. Than do the next frame. I would do this on the next inspection or they will start filling the gaps with propolis. Again on the next inspection not a big deal right now.
    Some other comments not critical just stuff.
    Your smoker was working fine you don't need a lot of smoke.
    You may want to get in the habit of putting the telescoping cover flat on the ground with the inside facing up. So if you remove any boxes you will have a good place to set them. That is catty corner in the telescoping cover.
    The inner cover was covered with bees I would set the inner cover against the hive so the bees could walk from the inner back into the hive. I would have shaken the bees from the inner cover back into the hive. Others may disagree with that but that is what I do.
    Nice entrance feeder does it contain sugar syrup? If it does it may be ok for now but when the nectar flow slows or stops entrance feeders can cause robbing. I would put that feeder on the inner cover with a box around it and then the top telescoping cover. If the feeder just contained plain water then its ok.
    I think I would have removed that transit cage the next day and left the queen alone for another 5-6 days.
    Again nothing critical just stuff you may or may not want to adopt.
    Good luck with your bees.
    Ski
    Just some thoughts.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Greenville, TX, USA
    Posts
    4,376

    Default Re: Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    if the frames are all drawn it won't matter. If they are not drawn, push them together.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Central California
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ski View Post
    Steven,
    You should get the frames pushed all the way back together and then split the space evenly between the two outside frames. You had the right idea about using smoke that will move them but also by moving two frames together at a time gently bump the bees on the frame with the other frame and they will move. Than do the next frame. I would do this on the next inspection or they will start filling the gaps with propolis. Again on the next inspection not a big deal right now.
    Some other comments not critical just stuff.
    Your smoker was working fine you don't need a lot of smoke.
    You may want to get in the habit of putting the telescoping cover flat on the ground with the inside facing up. So if you remove any boxes you will have a good place to set them. That is catty corner in the telescoping cover.
    The inner cover was covered with bees I would set the inner cover against the hive so the bees could walk from the inner back into the hive. I would have shaken the bees from the inner cover back into the hive. Others may disagree with that but that is what I do.
    Nice entrance feeder does it contain sugar syrup? If it does it may be ok for now but when the nectar flow slows or stops entrance feeders can cause robbing. I would put that feeder on the inner cover with a box around it and then the top telescoping cover. If the feeder just contained plain water then its ok.
    I think I would have removed that transit cage the next day and left the queen alone for another 5-6 days.
    Again nothing critical just stuff you may or may not want to adopt.
    Good luck with your bees.
    Ski
    Thanks for all the input Ski. I was afraid trying to bump the frame together would crush some bees. Glad to hear I don't have to worry until next week. I'll practice getting them together then.

    The entrance feeder does contain sugar water for now. I was planning on removing it either when empty or maybe one more fill up. Is there a way to tell if I need to re install it after taking it off? I was hoping not to have to use it all the time. If I do have to use it again I will go with a top feeder I just did it this way for now because I had a can of syrup on the top too.

    In July I was thinking of adding this screen type thing that goes over the entrance to help prevent robbing. They say robbers will fly straight in and this makes the bees have to land and crawl down through a slot in the top. Can't wait until next week!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Whitsett, NC
    Posts
    489

    Default Re: Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    Steven,
    From the video it appeared that you have undrawn frames so with packages on undrawn frames its feed feed feed. Top feeder,frame feeder all good I would just avoid the entrance feeder after the nectar flow stops. But I would paln on keeping syrup on the hive until they stop taking it, which may be several weeks.
    Robber screens are good, the stronger hive can and sometimes will rob the weaker hives.
    Just some thoughts.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, USA
    Posts
    5,347

    Default Re: Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    One easy way for beginners to get those frames together -> use your hive tool as a pry bar, gently and slowly pry between one side of the hive and the end bars of the frames on that side, until all the frames are tight together and pushed against the opposite side of the hive, then slip the hive tool in on the tight side and pry all the frames back the other way until the space between the outer frames and hive sidewalls are close to the same. Now all the frames are pushed together well and the extra space is divided between each side of the frames. There are many variations on this technique. One variation I use, especially after those outer combs have honey extending beyond the end bars, is to hold something as a spacer on the opposite side of the hive in order to prevent crushing that built-out comb and any bees that may be there.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
    Joseph Clemens -- Website Under Constructioni

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Otero County, New Mexico, USA
    Posts
    1,388

    Default Re: Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    My hives are mostly foundationless, so they usually don't fit well to begin with. I use a little smoke to make them move and them push them together. If they don't fit well, scrape the propolis off with your hive tool.

    Eevn if you don't use smoke, if you go slow enough, the bees will usually move.
    NM desert/mountain beekeeper - Black Mesa Honeybees.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,113

    Default Re: Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    >I was afraid trying to bump the frame together would crush some bees.

    Go slow. The smart ones will get out of the way. There is no help for the dumb ones...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  10. #10

    Default Re: Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    Go slow. The smart ones will get out of the way. There is no help for the dumb ones...
    That could be said for a lot of people, too.
    Greg Whitehead, Ten Mile, TN
    Blog - http://gregsbees.blogspot.com/

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Suffolk, VA
    Posts
    2,572

    Default Re: Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    Quote Originally Posted by Steven T Ruddy View Post
    Glad to hear I don't have to worry until next week.
    I'd actually do as soon as possible. The bees are building comb (a resource intensive act) and you want them to get it done right (the first time). That's the main point of having the frames pushed tightly together. When there is too much space between frames, you may find that they build comb perpendicular to the frames, which will then need to be removed and is lost effort. A light puff of smoke on the end bars should clear the bees. Alternately, for a small package, gently blow in the gap between the end bars and the bees should move away quickly. You may not want to do that on a big colony as sometimes this will agitate the bees.
    Horseshoe Point Honey -- http://localvahoney.com/

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Newton, NC, USA
    Posts
    14

    Default Re: Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    The solution I have found for this problem is to avoid ever creating that free space when re-installing a frame. My mentor taught me to do this by slowly and gently sliding the frame vertically down into place allowing the wide part of the end bars of the two frames to slide against each other. With this technique any bees on the edge of the end bar will simply get pushed to the top or bottom of the wide part of the end bar depending on which frame they are on. Most importantly, no bees will ever be crushed (think queen here).

    If I am doing a full 10 frame inspection of a box, I first remove the frame closest to me, inspect it, and set it aside. Then I take the next frame in line, inspect, and then put it in place where that first frame that I set aside came from. I keep this process going until I have inspected all remaining frames and they are all back in the box on the side closest to me. I then use the hive tool to push those 9 frames together back into the position they started in the manner that Joseph describes above. Finally, I replace the "set aside" frame back in the position it originally came from.

    Hope this helps!

    Steven

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    2,841

    Default Re: Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    What Pioneer says works well when inspecting. If combs are straight and not too fat, if you slide it back in so the endbars are touching or really close, the bees move and you don't have to worry about crushing any.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Hudson Valley, NY
    Posts
    14

    Default Re: Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    A new beek here and I have a question about frame space in the hive. I've noticed that you can fit 9 frames in an 8 frame hive, it is tight, can this be done or is it too tight for the bees?

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Otero County, New Mexico, USA
    Posts
    1,388

    Default Re: Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    You can do it, but the bees will glue them all into a single chunk and you will have a hard time getting them out again. There won't be any space to pry them apart.
    Last edited by honeyman46408; 04-25-2013 at 09:30 AM. Reason: UNQuote
    NM desert/mountain beekeeper - Black Mesa Honeybees.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,113

    Default Re: Couldn't get frames all pushed together.

    >A new beek here and I have a question about frame space in the hive. I've noticed that you can fit 9 frames in an 8 frame hive, it is tight, can this be done or is it too tight for the bees?

    It can be too tight for you. You need a little space to pry that first frame over to get it out... if you plane down the end bars you can fit 9 in with a little room to spare.

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesframewidth.htm
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

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