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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Decatur, Alabama
    Posts
    66

    Default When should you pull honey supers?

    I'm in Decatur Alabama, I have two hives just started this year. (First year Beek) Had one swarm they queen is laying again and they are drawing out comb in the second brood box. The other hive is booming. They filled two deep brood boxes and they have filled one Medium Honey Super which is almost all capped honey now, The second medium super is about full in 8 days, and I am wondering a few things.
    1) Is there enough time to add a third super in my area?
    2) When should I be pulling my supers off? (I have heard end of July)
    3) For the hive that swarmed I feel they will be able to build up their second box in time for winter. Is this right?
    4) I was not expecting any Honey, I have read some post that a 10 frame medium super fully drawn out can produce 3.6# per frame, is that Right?
    Thanks everyone's posts they have all been helpful. I dint put this in the 101 forum because I found the SE Tenn nectar flow post here.
    Hoss's BBQ Honey

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Rusk, Texas
    Posts
    93

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    2) I pull the supers off when they finish capping the honey and it is ready for extracting, no exact date. I don't extract the fall honey so I leave the supers on all winter which allows them to eat the honey when they need to eat. After winter, i extract the rest of the non-eaten honey right before flows begin and make room for more honey.
    3)If the hive that swarmed is weak, then i would leave the second box on there and walk away. They can lay brood or store honey whichever they please.
    I can't give you a good answer for 1 or 4
    Potato Guns shouldn't be illegal in Texas!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Decatur, Alabama
    Posts
    66

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    I agree about the swarm hive I have no intentions of putting a honey super on that hive. I appreciate the advice and help.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Starkville, MS
    Posts
    300

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    Hoss, Starkville, MS here. GO DAWGS!!! LOL 1) U can pull the fully capped frames any time u want to extract them as long as u remember to leave enuff honey for the bees to overwinter. 2) I extracted 15 frames 2 weeks ago and got just shy of 5 gallons of clover honey. 3) I go through my mediums frame by frame and pull only the full ones that are capped, I then consolidate frames and return the ones that were not full to the hive. If they are almost full, I add another medium to let them begin to draw out new frames. 4) If u have a booming hive, and u use an extractor, you can return the extracted frames to the hive for the ladies to clean up and refill. HAPPY BEEKEEPING

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Davie, Florida, USA
    Posts
    793

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    Hey Hoss...You can certainly add a 3rd super...the bees won't work it if they don't want it. Awesome!!! That was QUICK!!!
    2) Let the bees tell you what to do, not a calendar. When it is at least 70% capped (on all frames) pull it off. If you want a little treat, pull one well capped frame now, and crush and strain. It will be the most wonderful honey you have ever had!! (I strain 3 times...the last time in a Chinois...beautiful clear honey)
    3) Your swarm hive should do just fine. They won't do themselves in by swarming if they don't think they can do what they need to do to survive. They'll be just fine.
    4) I am averaging close to #4 honey per medium frame, so I say your #3.6 is right on.

    Congrats once again to the new Dad! (of daughter, and bees!!!)

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Decatur, Alabama
    Posts
    9

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    i live in decatur also south side in the flint area. i started my first hive last year.bought 2 nucs and started 2 new hives last week.first hive swarmed on me.dont think i will get much honey off of it this year.where in decatur do you live?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Manning, SC
    Posts
    1,947

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    As others have written.......I pull when they are mostly capped & I have the time to extract immediately. I pull all supers. Those frames that are not capped to the extent I like, I put back in a super to place back on the hive. Those that I do extract are immediately sprayed with BT as they are pulled from the extractor. They are then placed back in a super, taken near to a yard for the bees to clean. I aim for 8 frame supers in 10 frame equipment. So as I'm pulling from the extractor, I rearrange my supers (if needed) to accommodate 8 drawn frames. I use frame spacers in my supers ... it's just what I like & works for me.
    http://OxaVap.com
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Decatur, Alabama
    Posts
    66

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    I live off of Old Moulton in the Summer Shade division. My Hives are over in the Ceder Ridge area. I started with two nucs I bought off of Bill Mullins in Merdianville. One swarmed the other is doing great. Are your bees still on a nectar flow? I cant believe how quickly they are drawing out and filling the supers up!
    Hoss

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    killen,al
    Posts
    181

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    Bill has the VHS bees from the Louisiana project. I bought 4 queens from him last week.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    26,206

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    You should pull honey supers when they are 75% capped or better, when you are ready to extract and before you need empty supers to go back on for the next flow.

    It's nice if you have three honey supers to go one your hive, if the hive is two deeps. Then when two are full you can pull them and you still have one on the hive while u r getting the two extracted. Then you can put the two extracted supers back on wet and the bees might just fill all three pretty quickly. Least that's what happens here quite often.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Grosse Ile, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    2,818

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    Mark, that's exactly what I do, I'm always short on supers it seems, so I try to extract when they are about 75% or more capped as you say and get them back on the hives the next day or day after and the bees move right into them quickly and if the flow is still good its amazing how fast they can fill em up. John

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    26,206

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    Aren't they amazingly industrious creatures?
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Grosse Ile, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    2,818

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    Yes they are, and having a surplus of drawn comb for supers is like a stack of gold bars, well almost. I'm having to get Rite Cell drawn right now in all the new supers I put on, we're in the midst of a spectacular honey flow in this area and although the bees are drawing them well, it would sure be nice if they could just be filling combs instead of burning up honey to build em. John

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    26,206

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    It doesn't take as much as you might think.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Decatur, Alabama
    Posts
    66

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    Yes he told me that and I have been doing research on them. I am glad that Lindsey Trousdale told me to buy my splits from Bill!

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Grosse Ile, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    2,818

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    Mark, I have heard so many different "guesses" on how much honey it takes to make a pound of wax, most of it is around 8 lbs., but who really knows for sure, I like the sound of 1:1.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    26,206

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    Michael Bush.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Casey, Il, USA
    Posts
    959

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    Since this is about pulling supers I will ask this here instead of a seperate question. What would you all do if you had an 8 frame med and when you put the second brood box on they filled it with honey ? I didn't want to take any so I put on a 3 med and checkerboarded the top two boxes with empty frames does that sound like the right thing to do

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    26,206

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    Harley,
    Let me see if I understand. You had a colony of bees in a medium depth super and put another medium depth super on top of it and the bees filled it w/ honey? Then you added another medium depth super, but checker boarded it w/ frames of honey from the second medium depth super? I don't see anything wrong w/ that. The bees will do their thing just fine.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Casey, Il, USA
    Posts
    959

    Default Re: When should you pull honey supers?

    Yes I run all 8 frame med started a split with a frame of capped brood with a queen cell and one frame of stores they filled out the box so I put another on and instead of expanding the broodnest. They drew out the frames and filled them with honey so I pulled 4 frames and staggered 4 foundationless frames in placed the third box and did the same with the remaining 4 frames of capped honey and 4 more foundationless frames I was shocked that a little med box with brood would put up that much honey so quickly

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