brood box is full
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2019
    Location
    Naples FL
    Posts
    22

    Default brood box is full

    Hello, You guys were so helpful on the first post thought I'd post another question. Your'all a great resource and I appreciate it.
    I was recently given a hive that's full of bees, all frames are full of honey, brood, pollen etc. I added a super plus took out two frames of brood which I put into a weaker hive and replaced those frames with empty frames. Is this enough to stop swarming? Anything I should do now or anything I did wrong? Fyi, I'm gearing up for the mangrove bloom starting early May.
    Thanks

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Milford, Michigan USA
    Posts
    294

    Default Re: brood box is full

    Bees swarm even when they are not overcrowded, you should inspect regularly and check for queen cells. If you find qc then you have decisions to make. You should not assume that any particular manipulation will prevent swarming.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Pepperell, MA.
    Posts
    6,095

    Default Re: brood box is full

    Well adding space doesn't hurt. As mentioned, the presence of swarm cells is a sure indicator but even a colony lacking swarm cells may be "in the mood". Keep an eye on the colony. Also, be sure that the frames you donated to the weaker hive didn't have the queen on them! When I have a situation like yours, I just do a split and let them sort it out. In my experience, once a hive makes up their mind to swarm it's not at all trivial to get them thinking otherwise.
    "My wife always wanted girls. Just not thousands and thousands of them......"

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Crown Point, NY, USA
    Posts
    566

    Default Re: brood box is full

    I'm wondering what is your broodnest configuration?

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Massillon, Ohio
    Posts
    5,584

    Default Re: brood box is full

    Quote Originally Posted by Ravenseye View Post
    In my experience, once a hive makes up their mind to swarm it's not at all trivial to get them thinking otherwise.
    Isn't that the truth. In most cases if I find queen cells with jelly in them it's almost impossible to get them to reverse course at that point. The best I can do is split up the colony to reduce the number of bees that end up in the trees, and try to make the most of it.

    For me the most important thing to look for is the beginning of brood cells being backfilled with nectar and the start of broodnest reduction. It's most obvious when they have other available areas in the hive to store nectar but they are choosing to backfill in the broodnest.

    If it's caught at that point, a week or two prior to seeing queen cells, there is a much better chance at interrupting their swarm preparation cycle. It's best to be actively working on swarm prevention techniques prior to this to deter them from starting any swarm prep, but if backfilling is caught in time there a much better chance at stopping them from swarming.
    To everything there is a season....

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2019
    Location
    Naples FL
    Posts
    22

    Default Re: brood box is full

    Quote Originally Posted by Clayton Huestis View Post
    I'm wondering what is your broodnest configuration?
    Not sure what that means?

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Aylett, Virginia
    Posts
    3,748

    Default Re: brood box is full

    Brrod nest configuration is how we denote the location of certain types of frames within the broodbox. Typically you would use B for brood, P for pollen, H for honey, a C or D for drawn comb, and F for foundation or an undrawn frame. A reply might look like this: HPFBBBBDPH.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

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