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  1. #1
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    May 2009
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    Default Question for experienced beeks please - using single deeps for honey production in NC

    I have more hives than I have had in ten years. I am pretty much where I want to be as far as hive numbers. Almost all of my hives are double deeps and I am growing a few single deeps which should go into doubles in a couple of weeks at most. My question has to do with running singles for honey production in NC. We have a short but intense flow that lasts about 6 weeks. It is starting right now and has been preceded by a much weaker flow so I have nectar in the supers but it is just starting and the wax production is really kicking now.
    My plan, depending on feedback, is to split some double deeps but I really don't know the best way to do this AND make a maximum amount of honey. I will want the splits to make their own queens so what do I leave with the singles that I want to get honey from? Do I leave the queen? Do I super both the queen right AND queenless hives? Do I shake more bees into one or another?
    At the end of the season I will likely take the singles that have raised a new queen and combine them with the hives that have the old queen and kill the old queen so I have one year old queens going into next Spring.
    Thanks for the advice.
    "Challenger" as in the Mopar muscle car. Not a personality description .
    Keeping bees to raise money for chordoma.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Appleton, WI
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    29

    Default Re: Question for experienced beeks please - using single deeps for honey production i

    The Snelgrove Board would give those options while maintaining honey production. There is some great info. here:http://www.wbka.com/wp-content/uploa...groveboard.pdf

  3. #3
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    Jun 2012
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    Suffolk, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Question for experienced beeks please - using single deeps for honey production i

    The hives I wanted to split and produce honey I would wait until the cusp of a major flow, do a split to a nuc in which I would place the queen, a frame of brood, a frame of stores and 3 empty frames at least one that is drawn. Shake in plenty of extra bees. then move it to another location, In that way it does not loose foragers and grows much faster.
    Be sure there is ample eggs and newly emerged larva in the parent hive. When the bees discover they are queenless as long as it is available, they will choose larva of a day old to draw a queen from. I go through the hive in 8 days and destroy all but 2 or 3 of the best looking queen cells. These hives will produce surplus honey. Reduce swarm risk and give you a split all in one.
    The above is from Tenbears.

    I do the same.
    "Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring:........" Alexander Pope 1709

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
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    Menomonee Falls, Wis.
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    Default Re: Question for experienced beeks please - using single deeps for honey production i

    Although I have no experience with NC conditions, it is widely held that swarming decreases once the main flow occurs. Could you simply add an exclude between your deeps and extract the honey in which ever deep the queen is not in?

    We run single deeps but manipulate frames.

    Look up what Ian does.

    Crazy Roand

  5. #5
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    May 2009
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    Default Re: Question for experienced beeks please - using single deeps for honey production i

    Thanks all. I should have added that I use top entrances and no excluder. I'm sure I could get around this with offsetting the box below the excluder of course.
    Roland - how do you manipulate frames exactly?
    I watched another swarm today. It landed about 70' up a pine tree and left within a couple of hours.
    All of my hives still appear to have lots of bees coming and going but I can't imaging the swarm I saw was not from one of my hives.
    Now I am even with swarm gotten and swarms lost. Future swarms, and there should be plenty, will get dumped into existing hives instead of used to make increases. I did this one year and got a lot more honey.
    "Challenger" as in the Mopar muscle car. Not a personality description .
    Keeping bees to raise money for chordoma.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Question for experienced beeks please - using single deeps for honey production i

    Challenger asked:

    "Roland - how do you manipulate frames exactly?"

    My reply - Very carefully. The key is to keep open comb in front of the queen at all times. You must of course, use all the same size equipment.

    Crazy Roland

  7. #7
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    May 2009
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    Hampstead, NC USA
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    Default Re: Question for experienced beeks please - using single deeps for honey production i

    Thanks Roland, I figured that's what you meant. It's a lot more work and time BUT may very well be very much worth this effort and time.
    A couple of additional questions on this if I may:
    Do you have a stock of drawn brood comb that you use to keep in front of the queen?
    How often do you manipulate the frames?
    Thanks
    "Challenger" as in the Mopar muscle car. Not a personality description .
    Keeping bees to raise money for chordoma.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Grosse Ile, Michigan, USA
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    Default Re: Question for experienced beeks please - using single deeps for honey production i

    I'm sure Roland will respond, but I'm thinking he has an extra deep box of drawn comb for each hive the he puts on over an excluder initially just before swarm season. Then he "hangs up" or rotates combs of brood into the new box, and puts empty comb down below the excluder to give the queen space to lay. It sounds like a good method to me, as long as you use all deeps in your operation for uniformity. I use a single deep brood nest also, but use medium supers so this method won't work out for me.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2009
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    Default Re: Question for experienced beeks please - using single deeps for honey production i

    Quote Originally Posted by jmgi View Post
    I'm sure Roland will respond, but I'm thinking he has an extra deep box of drawn comb for each hive the he puts on over an excluder initially just before swarm season. Then he "hangs up" or rotates combs of brood into the new box, and puts empty comb down below the excluder to give the queen space to lay. It sounds like a good method to me, as long as you use all deeps in your operation for uniformity. I use a single deep brood nest also, but use medium supers so this method won't work out for me.
    OK then let me ask you how you prefer using a single deep? Do you do it because you feel it is good for honey production? How do you feel a single deep does as far as swarming?
    BTW - I do use all deeps for brood boxes.
    Thanks for the information.
    "Challenger" as in the Mopar muscle car. Not a personality description .
    Keeping bees to raise money for chordoma.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Question for experienced beeks please - using single deeps for honey production i

    All equipment is the same, deeps. A frame is a frame. When hanging down, the darkest in the box is typically picked first.

    We inspect every 14 days. Or every 2 weeks works too.

    You are doing a balancing act, on the edge of failure. Swap as many frames as you can, but not TOO MANY.

    Crazy Roland

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Question for experienced beeks please - using single deeps for honey production i

    Can you tell me if frames of foundation are ok to place into the bottom if I don't have enough drawn comb. I have a few hives that need a second deep but not enough drawn comb to populate both deeps. If I move the brood above the excluder and put open frames down with the queen PLUS a few untrained foundation is this better than leaving open and capped brood below? Thanks

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Question for experienced beeks please - using single deeps for honey production i

    Sure, you can hang down foundation. It keeps all those bees busy and out of mischief.

    Crazy Roland

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
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    Miami, Manitoba, Canada
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    Default Re: Question for experienced beeks please - using single deeps for honey production i

    add a super as your second, let the queen use two boxes to brood in until the flow hits. Shake her down into the single and extract after the second has been backfilled.
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Question for experienced beeks please - using single deeps for honey production i

    Well my most recent attempt at setting up a hive with a single brood box really exposed my inexperience and ignorance. I mean it's not as if I need to attempt something new to do these things but at least I can blame this exposure to trying something new. I went into a double deep that I've been growing since early spring. A month ago it had 3 frame of brood and about as many bees as an average single nuc would have. Two weeks later I popped on another deep full of drawn frames. The hive looked to be growing fairly well so I didn't inspect beyond looking at the top of the first deep. Yesterday I decided to make this hive a deep/excluder/deep/honey super setup as described by Roland (thanks for the advice) and others here (same). The hive had plenty of capped and wet brood and a decent number of bees. Not quite the number of bees needed to make a honey crop yet but was about to really boom. Not a single queen cell of any type which was encouraging. I manipulated every frame in both deeps to move all wet brood and as much capped brood as I could to the top. I don't know what happened but the number of bees went from "decent" to certainly enough bees to make honey while I was doing this. I never looked for the queen but there were eggs etc etc. After shaking all the bees into the bottom that box became coated with a thick layer of bees on all four sides PLUS the top. The bees seemed more interested in being outside than inside the hive which made me think I inadvertently Duqueened the hive. There was no way that I could get an excluder on this hive without smashing far too many bees. I'm not squeamish about smashing bees. I don't like to do so if I can avoid it however that wasn't the issue. The issue was that I'd have had to smash too many and they would have plugged up the excluder to a large degree. I decided to let it go by sliding the second deep back on and added a super of undrawn foundation. There were still thick bees on the exterior of the hive when I left so I figured the queen was somehow gone or killed. This irked me because if she was dead yet inside the hive I think the bees would still go inside after her smell. If she got shaken off she couldn't have flown far and there should have been a cluster around her by this AM. Oh well, I checked this AM and the bees were all inside except for a small hanging cluster at a small front entrance I use.
    Plan B (or W?) today will be to prop up the top deep just enough to slide and excluder in between the two deeps and see what happens. Somehow I think the queen got croaked (mental image: "Ding dong the witch is dead" ) but we will see in two weeks. I don't know why I didn't think to do that yesterday?

  15. #15
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    Menomonee Falls, Wis.
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    Default Re: Question for experienced beeks please - using single deeps for honey production i

    Do you own a bee brush? You may have been able to brush them off and SLIDE the excluder on the bottom deep.

    Ian's method works, you could try it now.

    Part of experience is knowing how to work fast enough that the above does not occur. We average 6 minutes for that task.

    The prudent use of smoke might also help to keep the bees in the lower deep.

    I doubt the queen was injured. We rarely see any queen deaths that can be traced to the time of a manipulation. Check in a few days for eggs, then you will know.

    Crazy Roland

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