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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have 3 medium supers full of honey on one hive, but the bees only seem interested in capping off the top 2/3's of the frames and leaving the bottom to what appears to be open nectar. This is the case on all 3 supers. I'd like to extract these... but should I be patient and wait until they are all capped off or is it okay to take them the way they are. I am concerned that if I pull them too early I might have a lot of bottles of mead in the near future. Any opinions?
 

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I have a lot of supers the same way?

Johnny
 

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The bees don't wait until the cells are full to begin fanning and drying the nectar; it's an ongoing process. If they're bringing in nectar I'd leave the supers on them. If your flow is over for all practical purposes, then you can go ahead and extract, the honey will be mostly dried and ready to eat. Dig your pointy finger into the uncapped honey and taste test it! The only way to be 100% sure is to test with a refractometer which most of us don't have. :)
 

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You want 80% or better capped and they won't cap it until the moisture level is correct,, somewhere below 20%. Be patience grasshopper!!:D:D
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you all for your replies, I will be patient and wait until they are more capped off. I think the high humidity for the past few weeks has played into the slower process than usual. Thanks again for your replies!
 

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2/3 capped is usually dry enough to extract. Another way to test is to remove a frame and shake it or tip it on its side. If it doesn't drip nectar it is dry enough to extract.
 

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Give them more supers they need something to do:applause:
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I put one super on, they filled it with nectar, so I threw another on (maybe 3-4 weeks later), and basically repeated once again. One box was drawn out comb on plastic, while the other two were undrawn plastic foundation. It just seems like they move onto the next box and forget about the one that's already almost done. I'd like to get some extracted and am concerned that if I keep adding boxes of undrawn foundation if a good flow gets going they may begin to backfill the brood chamber due to the lack of drawn foundation. Some cooler and significantly less humid weather is coming up next week so I'm hoping it might help them dry out and cap off the honey a bit
 
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