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Discussion Starter #1
and just for the fun of it since Beeks are inveterate tinkerers, has anyone tried bottom suppering? That is raising the brood nest up above the supers and letting the bees work down.......... it goes against all we've were taught and read about, but surely someone musta said, "Just for the hey of it, lets............"
 

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Who would want to break down their whole hive just to do that? Put emptiness below the brood nest. I believe doing so would mean the brood nest would get pushed down into those empty supers, since usually bees put honey above brood. That way it is where they can get to it when they need access to it during the Winter months.

I doubt anyone would, but, whatever can be thought of may well have been tried.
 

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Yes I did, it didn't make one bit of difference with what I was attempting to do.
I suspect the main reason and maybe the only reason to super from the top is the amount of work involved. moving an entire hive to add a super would start getting ridiculous in the labor department.
 

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I believe doing so would mean the brood nest would get pushed down into those empty supers, since usually bees put honey above brood.
Ok, what if there were a QE below the brood nest? Just playing around here..........
 

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I would predict a plugged out brood nest and swarming.

R u just thinking outside the box or in hopes of accomplishing somethin?. Just asking, not judging.

This is another of those cases where I think, since you thought of it, you should do it and then tell us the results. Maybe you will learn why no one does it. Maybe you will learn that we all should.
 

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As Mark suggested, they would just move their brood nest down. Bees instinctively store honey above their brood nest. The overwintering cluster instinctively moves up in search of food. Many beekeepers have had colonies starve during winter, although there was considerable honey left in the hive….just not above the cluster. Why would you want to work against the bees’ instincts? Why would you want to make your job more difficult?
If you want easier access for returning foragers add an upper entrance, although I’ve never found this necessary.
 

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It has been tried, as well as under supering, putting the empty super under the full supers on top of the brood nest. Just stock on naproxen for your back unless you are an olympic bodybuilder. Those that have tried report no increase in honey production so why go to all the extra back breaking effort?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
R u just thinking outside the box or in hopes of accomplishing somethin?. Just asking, not judging.

This is another of those cases where I think, since you thought of it, you should do it and then tell us the results. Maybe you will learn why no one does it. Maybe you will learn that we all should.
I'm just having fun..............certainly you would remove all supers after honey collection, in which case you'd be back as before...

I may just try it one hive next year, just for Sh--s and giggles...........
 

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What you are talking about is "Nadiring."
I don't know much about it since I use a TBH but in the warre forums they talk about doing just that in the spring.
Maybe, and this is me talking out of the side of my neck, maybe it prevents swarming. They nadir in the spring, which by bee time is swarm-o-clock.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
It's fun to think outside the box every now & then and it makes for good conversation. Take a strong hive and put a QE under it along with a couple of supers on a bottom board and see what happens..............it does take the issue of bees not placing brood close to the entrance away.......and just maybe they will fill down.........
 

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I might add that bottom supering, putting an empty super beneath a full one, in my part of the country is a recipe for disaster. Bees will vigorously defend their brood nest from invaders. The further from the brood nest, the less vigor. Placing an empty super in between...and most defense disappears. Small hive beetles will take full advantage and can take down an otherwise healthy, strong hive. Experience speaking.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Placing an empty super in between...and most defense disappears. Small hive beetles will take full advantage and can take down an otherwise healthy, strong hive. Experience speaking.
Great point Dan.........If you're not having a SHB problem, would not this method preclude some swarming? Remember, we're just having a fun conversation.........
 

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after the main flow, i noticed i wasn't getting much foundation drawn in the top super position. i have put those foundation only supers on the bottom of several hives, in hopes that the bees will draw them out and store pollen in them. i haven't checked them lately, so i don't know if it is working. if i'm lucky, they will draw them out, and i can use them to checkerboard above in the spring.
 

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would not this method preclude some swarming? Remember, we're just having a fun conversation.........
Don't worry...I don't take any of this too seriously. Folks need to try things for themselves. I only hope they don't make some of the same mistakes I have.
I'm not sure I understand what you mean by the method precluding swarming. You mean, bottom supering might make the bees less likely to swarm? If so, in my yards the only time I place empty frames above the brood nest, in hopes of reducing the swarm impulse, is very early in the spring. At that time I rarely have any full supers to place above the empty frames. Also, at that time the shb populations are usually very low. All the same, I add those empty frames cautiously. Only on hives that are building up well and already have good populations. By the time I’m adding honey supers I’ve begun other methods of swarm management….
 

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It's called nadiring and that is the way most Warre hives are run.
 

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The only reason we run a super under the deep brood box is to be able to get to the brood nest and the feeder in early spring.The feed super that was on top during winter is move to bottom until splits have been pulled .If you dont flip them back before major flow the bees will start putting the honey in the brood box pushing the queen down in the super to lay
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
I'm not sure I understand what you mean by the method precluding swarming.
You would have all the brood and queen above the supers with a QE in-between. If the bees are filling below, possibly the brood nest would remain open enough for the queen to have plenty of cells in which to lay..... and the Q can't move down.........
 

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If you do this queen excluder between brood with super on bottom thing you had better have a upper exit for drones to excape.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
If you do this queen excluder between brood with super on bottom thing you had better have a upper exit for drones to excape.
Agree........may try it both ways one with excluder and and upper entrance/exit and one without QE ........it's all just fun.........
 

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I middle super all the time, place a box of empty foundation in the middle of the brood nest. In a strong hive, it's a good way to draw a lot of comb really quick.

This year, I started my changeover from deeps to mediums. I started one square hive with a deep full of brood to which I added a medium below. Later, I removed the deep, mostly filled with honey, replaced with with empty mediums, extracted the honey, donated the brood to another hive.
 
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