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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
brood nest filling fast with nectar...take action?

I looked through 4 colonies today, frame by frame. #2, #3 and #4 I had just removed the honey from, #1 was the colony I pulled frames from throughout the summer to start nucs. It was never supered.

#1 and #2 have both swarmed. #1 has capped and uncapped swarm cells, #2 has a new queen, both are 80% filled with nectar and pollen, 15% capped brood, with few open cells.

#3 and #4 are packed with bees. Both have all stages of brood along with nectar and pollen. Very few open cells in both.

The star thistle is still blooming and the goldenrod is just starting.

Should I be opening up the brood nest and giving the queen a place to lay? Maybe supering? I have no drawn comb, all mine this year was cut comb and crush and strain. Other options?
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Ok, maybe I should have just asked:

at this time of the year, is it OK to move things around in the brood nest to prevent swarming? They are 80% filled with nectar and queen has little room to lay.
 

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It's been quite a while since I lived through a Finger Lakes autumn, but based on what you've said I'd do the following:

Newspaper combine #1 and #2, pinching all queen cells.

Use the extra frames resulting from the combine to open up the brood nests in #3 & #4. If there is still not enough room for the queen to lay I'd extract several frames from each hive, saving the honey to feed back later in the fall.

Any swarm that issues now will certainly not survive the winter.

So much of what you ought to do is based on how strong you anticipate the fall flow will be. Here in Maine we are into the dearth, the Golden Rod didn't amount to much as we are in desperate need of rain.

Hives I was in to day are pretty light - some are probably too light to make it through the dearth without assistance. And these are hives that were back filling not too long ago.

What race of bees do you have?
 
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