I robbed some of my bees today. I have a few questions.
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2019
    Location
    Jonesborough TN USA
    Posts
    44

    Default I robbed some of my bees today. I have a few questions.

    I robbed some of my bees today. Some of my hives had five honey supers on them. There now seems to be not enough room in the hive for all the bees and they are bearding out the front of the hive. What am I supposed to do about this? Since they are now so crowded are they going to swarm?

    Some of my frames were partially capped and some not capped at all. And when the frames were shaken the nectar flew out of the comb like water. I have been told that you can place the frames over an inner cover and the bees will carry it down. But does that assume there is room in the hive for the honey?
    So you would put 10 frames over an inner cover. How long would it take the bees to clean up the frames? I guess it might depend on how strong the hive is and how hungry they are and if there is room below. I guess they could start storing nectar above too which is something I wouldn’t want to happen. Would it be better to extract and feed the bees in a top feeder? Or should I extract and either freeze or refrigerate the nectar for the family to use?

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Murphy, TX
    Posts
    429

    Default Re: I robbed some of my bees today. I have a few questions.

    It's not clear what you are saying. Are you saying the supers you took off had uncapped nectar ? If yes then I would simply put them back on the hives so they can ripe it. If you have some left over frames of nectar then put them back over the inner cover if you want them to clean up those frames. Bearding after honey harvest is normal. As to they will swarm totally depends on how is the flow. If the flow is still strong and they back fill the brood nest then they will swarm.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Aylett, Virginia
    Posts
    3,713

    Default Re: I robbed some of my bees today. I have a few questions.

    Alream, I am also having trouble understanding what it is you are trying to do. There is no point in harvesting frames where the majority of the honey is uncapped or any can be shaken from the cells. Pick through the supers, pull only the capped honey, and put everthing else back. If you have a few extra frames, put them over the inner cover in a super and the bees will have it moved down in a few days. Mine even did me the courtesy of fixing the damage my roller uncapper made when I extracted.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2019
    Location
    Jonesborough TN USA
    Posts
    44

    Default Re: I robbed some of my bees today. I have a few questions.

    I don’t know how I could have kept bees for this long and not known that you only pull off the capped frames. I thought you pulled off the whole box. Well I get a chance to try to do it right in a few weeks as I still have another Apiary to rob. But I do have a question. So I have these frames of partially capped and uncapped honey that I robbed. I put them in a room at the house with a dehumidifier and they dried down in 24 hours to around 16%. So I turned the dehumidifier off and hope to continue extracting again tomorrow. Since the water content is normal is it okay to just extract them? Is water content the only difference between capped honey and uncapped nectar. I am hoping the moisture content does not increase since I turned the dehumidifier off but I was afraid that the nectar was getting too dry.

    Thanks for all your help by the way. It is greatly appreciated.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Location
    frederick, md
    Posts
    832

    Default Re: I robbed some of my bees today. I have a few questions.

    We are at the end of our short nectar season. Right now pulling capped and uncapped frames. Usually the nectar is in the 19ish humidity level when they are uncapped, we also get uncapped in the 16 level. I test extensively the uncapped cells.

    If any are above 18% we put the box with the frames in our sunny window, with a fan blowing, also have AC going. Within a few days they are ready to be extracted ie nectar in the 17-16% range.
    Zone 6b: 27 hives in Maryland, Carniolan, Italian mix mutts: Still learning - started bees spring of 2014.

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