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Discussion Starter #1
Hi,

This is something I should probably know before asking, hut I'll ask anyway. Up until this point I have been watching the bees, feeding them, and pretty much leaving them to their own devices. The population in both hives is growing. Now, nearly all of the frames have drawn comb, and I think it's time to add another deep. Should I just stick another one on, or should I be moving some frames around to the other deep?

Thanks,
Mike
 

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Since it is only about half thru the cycle for the year, I would in your shoes split the brood nest up at this point. Alternate the brood combs with undrawn frames between. Do this ONLY if the population in the hive is heavy enough to support it. Basically if there is bees totally covering each frame. This should entice them to draw out more comb.. It is what I do myself and works without a problem each time. You have to watch though once the fall flow starts as they start organizing the brood nest the way they want if for winter.
 

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Thanks! Now, the bees are not covering every frame, but several. I was going by the rule add another when about 70% full. Both hives are a bit more than 70. Should I wait?
 

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I've only been at this for a few years, but my first instinct would be to add another box. Do you have any drawn frames?That would help encourage them to move up. You could move brood up in a week or two if there is no action.
 

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Do Not alternate the undrawn frames! It will most always result in a mess of poorly drawn frames. Don't forget to work the outer frames in the bottom box in between drawn ones so the bees don't just bypass them. Don't wait too long from 70%. a frame of bees emerging makes a huge jump in population. Don't ever let them come close to running out of room. When putting on the top box, Take a frame of brood from between two frames of capped brood and move the foundation down into that void. The bees will draw it perfectly to re rationalize their brood nest. The frame of brood up above will draw bees up into the upper box to expand their hive. If your flow dries up, I would feed until they have drawn out the second deep. Every week while the colony is expanding move another frame of foundation down between capped brood frames. It will speed up the process of getting your two boxes drawn a bit. Don't feed too much and jam those two deeps so full the queen has no place to lay. Add a super before the top box is completely full and quit feeding until the fall flow is over. People in your zip code can best tell you when that is. Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks, Vance. I was going to go over today, but we just finished up a rain storm, and it's cloudy and gloomy, so I'm not going to bother them today. Hope the sun is out tomorrow.
 
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