Beesource Beekeeping Forums banner

1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
zone 3 240 colonies
Joined
·
226 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Single brood box works for me but upon honey harvest there are a ton of bees that need a home. At harvest time I would like to add a wet deep to the colonies for extra space for the overflow of bees but also to store extra honey for our wicked winters. But these 2nd boxes would need to come off in early spring before they start brooding into both.
The question is should the wet be put on the top or on the bottom of the brood box to increase the likelihood that they will be in the top box by spring?
The goal being to quickly go through in early spring and pull off all bottom boxes (assuming they will be in the top box by then)
I will be fattening them up for winter by fall feeding immediately after harvest. I use only deeps.
 

·
Registered
5 ,8 ,10 frame, and long Lang
Joined
·
2,002 Posts
Single brood box works for me but upon honey harvest there are a ton of bees that need a home. At harvest time I would like to add a wet deep to the colonies for extra space for the overflow of bees but also to store extra honey for our wicked winters. But these 2nd boxes would need to come off in early spring before they start brooding into both.
The question is should the wet be put on the top or on the bottom of the brood box to increase the likelihood that they will be in the top box by spring?
The goal being to quickly go through in early spring and pull off all bottom boxes (assuming they will be in the top box by then)
I will be fattening them up for winter by fall feeding immediately after harvest. I use only deeps.
In Wisconsin, I would put the empty wet "under" the hive.
You have the stores properly set up and also have cluster space.
Sometimes the bees move up and in the other case the bees would be in an empty with stores under them.

I BTW do this quite often.
The slight difference, for me is, I put a medium wet into a deep and place it under the hive, for cluster space, and to raise the colony a bit above the entrance cold air. As well in spring there is no brood in the lower in the spring.

GG
 

·
Registered
5 ,8 ,10 frame, and long Lang
Joined
·
2,002 Posts
When you do this manoeuvre is it before or after you fall feed?
well it is right after I extract... In General I do not fall feed. this year that was late august. As I did a tear down to the BB, I also did the Blue shop towel at the same time. If I pull 4 supers there at times is too many bees to fit. One hive I missed doing this process to, swarmed 10 days after the honey pull, they were bearding as well, so it was on me.
So this is a space thing as well. I have had issues with the bottom inch or 2 of the deep frames in the bottom box getting moldy, in spring, so hence the med frame in the deep box, a shim under the bottom deep box would have the same effect. I did winter survival in an Igloo a couple times, so the effect of raising the bees up a bit while keeping the entrance constant is a big difference. Spend the night in a Igloo, then in a cabin with the door open in winter, it will make a believer out of you.

In the spring when the dandelions first bloom, I do a tear down, remove the lower box (deep with 10 medium frames), clean the BB, access brood and queen for either breeder or production. On rare occasions I see swarm prep, also do a bit of OSBN. I take the frames 1,2,9,10 , from the top box, and put them in the bottom deep just removed box, as a 3rd box, adding in empty comb in the second deep, all on 1 side, and foundation in the 3rd deep all on one side. All 3 deeps are pre set for splitting or NUC creation.

Sorry this is not directedly related to 1 deep management but I like to do 2 or 3 things at a time, so you could adapt some or most of this to the 1 deep mgmt plan. IMO adding the wet under is a good thing for northern keepers.
Maybe try it on a few hives next year and see what they look like in the spring, compared to the "control" group.

GG
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,057 Posts
I switched some colonies to single deep brood this season and agree there is a scary overflow of bees when you pull off say 3 medium supers. I decided to put a medium of undrawn frames underneath. Thanx Roland for this idea.

I did put an undrawn box under the previous winter and found the bees drew out a fair bit of comb but did not brood into it. Pulled it off in the spring before they moved back down into it. A good head start on getting a drawn out super. This appeared to be a good proposition, so I did this with single deep colonies in the fall. I will see what they look like some time in April which is about the soonest I can get into them here.

I agree with GG that I want the stores above the point where the winter cluster starts out. As they eat upwards into the winter anything below is of no use till they break cluster in spring.

Space below the frames in lower box is a good hedge against entrance becoming plugged with dead bees or ice build up. I have quite a few 3" lift rings that I use for various purposes.

I put the lower undrawn box under when I take the supers off before I start feeding. The space is needed immediately when the supers are removed
 

·
Registered
zone 3 240 colonies
Joined
·
226 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
well it is right after I extract... In General I do not fall feed. this year that was late august. As I did a tear down to the BB, I also did the Blue shop towel at the same time. If I pull 4 supers there at times is too many bees to fit. One hive I missed doing this process to, swarmed 10 days after the honey pull, they were bearding as well, so it was on me.
So this is a space thing as well. I have had issues with the bottom inch or 2 of the deep frames in the bottom box getting moldy, in spring, so hence the med frame in the deep box, a shim under the bottom deep box would have the same effect. I did winter survival in an Igloo a couple times, so the effect of raising the bees up a bit while keeping the entrance constant is a big difference. Spend the night in a Igloo, then in a cabin with the door open in winter, it will make a believer out of you.

In the spring when the dandelions first bloom, I do a tear down, remove the lower box (deep with 10 medium frames), clean the BB, access brood and queen for either breeder or production. On rare occasions I see swarm prep, also do a bit of OSBN. I take the frames 1,2,9,10 , from the top box, and put them in the bottom deep just removed box, as a 3rd box, adding in empty comb in the second deep, all on 1 side, and foundation in the 3rd deep all on one side. All 3 deeps are pre set for splitting or NUC creation.

Sorry this is not directedly related to 1 deep management but I like to do 2 or 3 things at a time, so you could adapt some or most of this to the 1 deep mgmt plan. IMO adding the wet under is a good thing for northern keepers.
Maybe try it on a few hives next year and see what they look like in the spring, compared to the "control" group.

GG
Sorry this is not directedly related to 1 deep management
GG
I totally appreciate all the extra information it really helps to give me a clear picture of what other people do. Even though I am getting experience very fast, sometimes maybe too fast :) I am fairly new to this.
What is the blue shop towel in reference to?
 

·
Registered
zone 3 240 colonies
Joined
·
226 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Thanx Roland for this idea.

I put the lower undrawn box under when I take the supers off before I start feeding. The space is needed immediately when the supers are removed
Yes I think I have Roland to thank also as I think it was him that planted the seed for me too.

So maybe un-drawn frames make sense for me too. If they were put underneath at the time of harvest Followed by fall feeding they would be forced to put most of the stores in the top box because the bottom would be undrawn. And would almost guarantee no brooding in lower box. And because of the heavy fall feeding is that when they are starting to draw out those foundations because of all the feed coming in?
Just thinking about this now, could it make sense to put fully drawn wets on top of the brood since the brood box would be largely packed out with brood still at this time of the year (no place to put syrup)? And then if feeding was done immediately it would seem they would pack that top deep of combs full of syrup and then move up there through the winter? What do you guys/gals think?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,057 Posts
At the time you pull supers I dont think you will find a ten frame full of brood. There will be room at the top of frames to start filling with syrup. You dont want the queen laying in (and tying up that space for three weeks) If you have a lot of Italian genetics you often want feeding to actually throttle the queen a bit.

The last nectar or syrup will take time to dry down. Uncapped stores not good for moisture control or for the bees to have to cluster on. There are a lot of local conditions variables. I have usually no fall flow and summer ends pretty sharply. The bees need time to dry down and position themselves best. Empty space or uncapped stores at the top of a colony going into winter would not be a natural condition for the bees. Push that queen down; the lower they start the cluster the better their position. Winter here is 6 months with no forage.

Yes, I think the incoming syrup leads to them starting to draw out the lower box.
 

·
Registered
zone 3 240 colonies
Joined
·
226 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
At the time you pull supers I dont think you will find a ten frame full of brood. There will be room at the top of frames to start filling with syrup. You dont want the queen laying in (and tying up that space for three weeks) If you have a lot of Italian genetics you often want feeding to actually throttle the queen a bit.

The last nectar or syrup will take time to dry down. Uncapped stores not good for moisture control or for the bees to have to cluster on. There are a lot of local conditions variables. I have usually no fall flow and summer ends pretty sharply. The bees need time to dry down and position themselves best. Empty space or uncapped stores at the top of a colony going into winter would not be a natural condition for the bees. Push that queen down; the lower they start the cluster the better their position. Winter here is 6 months with no forage.

Yes, I think the incoming syrup leads to them starting to draw out the lower box.
And I think another problem with the wet combs on top is that come spring the bees may be in the top box but their early spring pollen stores will be in the lower box. I am liking the idea of undrawn foundations underneath. And like Gray Goose was saying I totally like the idea of having that cluster tucked up and away from that entrance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
205 Posts
I am also trying this method for the first time this winter (thanks to Roland for the idea!). I am using all extracted deeps underneath single brood box, I did not have enough empty foundation at the end of the season and this (hopefully) also solves the wet frame storage problem. I don't know yet what I will see in the spring, but so far all these hives are doing OK. I took a quick peek through the screened bottom and so far it looks neat and clean- I don't see any bees in the lower deep, not many dead bees either. Saw a mouse dropping at the entrance and got scared, but can't see any signs of the mouse inside, so hopefully it id not come in...
I will come back to this thread in spring and update with my observations.
 

·
Registered
zone 3 240 colonies
Joined
·
226 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
I am also trying this method for the first time this winter (thanks to Roland for the idea!). I am using all extracted deeps underneath single brood box, I did not have enough empty foundation at the end of the season and this (hopefully) also solves the wet frame storage problem. I don't know yet what I will see in the spring, but so far all these hives are doing OK. I took a quick peek through the screened bottom and so far it looks neat and clean- I don't see any bees in the lower deep, not many dead bees either. Saw a mouse dropping at the entrance and got scared, but can't see any signs of the mouse inside, so hopefully it id not come in...
I will come back to this thread in spring and update with my observations.
Looking forward to your spring observation. On this note of fully drawn wets underneath the brood chamber does anybody have ideas on what the bees will do with that empty wet? Will they fill it with syrup or will they move down and put the syrup up high anyway?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,057 Posts
Dont bees usually put honey up top and build down in a vertical hive or, in horizontal combs, put the honey remote from the entrance?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
205 Posts
Dont bees usually put honey up top and build down in a vertical hive or, in horizontal combs, put the honey remote from the entrance?
Yes, if building new comb, but they have damaged/wet comb in the hive, I would expect them to repair and cap some of the remaining honey in the extracted comb. I don't think they would add much of feed syrup there, but I also don't think they would have moved all of remaining honey up (which probably is insignificant amount anyway). At least that is what I observe them doing during summer, maybe in the fall it is different, although there was still flow after my last extraction, so they could have filled more of the bottom frames especially if they were out o space. I did not however notice that much of feed consumption on those hives (even in warm September) - certainly not enough to fill another deep super...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,057 Posts
Try it out and see how it goes; maybe you can school Roland on a better way of doing things.:) I'll just watch from a safe distance:unsure:

So far I have only been putting undrawn foundation frames under the single deep brood chamber.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
205 Posts
Sorry, it was never my intention to mislead or contradict anyone, I was just sharing my observations no matter how unscientific they may have been...
To be fair however, it was Roland that wrote about using drawn comb in the empty bottom box here

 

·
Registered
zone 3 240 colonies
Joined
·
226 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Dont bees usually put honey up top and build down in a vertical hive or, in horizontal combs, put the honey remote from the entrance?
Yes honey above the brood but the reason I ask is suddenly they would have a ton of open space underneath the cluster and at the very same moment would be brooding in the upper. I really don't know but at this moment I am thinking what they would do is grab all the syrup immediately (I open feed)and stash it wherever there was openings and probably slowly and progressively move the brood downward and move the honey and syrup upward throughout the remainder of the fall... Just my guess. I really appreciate this discussion thank you all so much.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,057 Posts
Sorry, Dekster; had to go back in the thread and re read to see who said what.😌

My perception that a major part of the preparation to winter as a single brood is to compact the brood nest and have upper portions of frames be filled and capped and brooding area gradually squeezed down low on the brood frames. I also think that is what the bees are inclined to do if we dont mess them up.

I dont think the wet deep frames placed underneath would be a problem. Roland has mentioned using either drawn or bare frames below the winter brood box. I dont think the bees will put much syrup in them; at least not till the upper areas were filled. As the brood nest moves down vacated cells above will be filled and bees will clean out and polish cells below for the queen to lay.

When the summer flow is on incoming foragers will off load near the entrance but permanent storage is from the top down. Bees know better than to leave their goodies near the front door to be robbed. Putting a wet deep above would not be a good move but I have seen it suggested. In many areas it would not give the bees time to properly dry down and there is negative consideration about wearing out what should be your young wintering bees; let the old summer foragers wear out their wings fanning down the syrup.

I expect that different climate and flow conditions require different feed strategies. Some people deliberately cut off brooding by feeding 4 or more gallons in little more than a week. I think Ian does this but he has to get them ready to load into his winter storage en masse. I weigh each hive and feed them gradually toward my target weight. That would probably not be the best for Italian bees who will keep on laying full bore at least not if you were wanting to winter them in single deeps.

If you had them well filled up with syrup and an unexpected fall flow occurred it might leave you scratching your head. I think I only had that threaten once in ten years but I was in double deeps then.
 

·
Registered
5 ,8 ,10 frame, and long Lang
Joined
·
2,002 Posts
Looking forward to your spring observation. On this note of fully drawn wets underneath the brood chamber does anybody have ideas on what the bees will do with that empty wet? Will they fill it with syrup or will they move down and put the syrup up high anyway?
they will clean, occupy the new area, any honey or syrup added will be a new band at the bottom of the existing honey band in the old now top box. not likely a wet is more than 2 rows of cells in an arc just below the existing stores.

GG
 

·
Registered
zone 3 240 colonies
Joined
·
226 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Looking forward to your spring observation. On this note of fully drawn wets underneath the brood chamber does anybody have ideas on what the bees will do with that empty wet? Will they fill it with syrup or will they move down and put the syrup up high anyway?
Shucks...I had this wrong i meant to say putting the wet over the brood chamber not underneath.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,370 Posts
If I may speak for Roland, I believe he NEVER puts foundation on in Fall,. The bees do NOT need to waste syrup trying to make wax to draw out comb. I believe he does leave the most empty super BELOW the single brood box. It saves taking an empty box back into the shop, and bringing it back out in spring. Not the best setup, but the inherited winter wraps are for double deeps. The bees seldom use the bottom super , because he does this after the end of Goldenrod when populations have already dropped.

Plan "B", and used at times by Adrian Quiney of Hudson Wis. area, is to use an "Empty Empty" box, no frames, on the bottom. The disadvantage is that logistically you must put something on AND Two off the truck on the same trip. (Last supers on the truck, feed pails off and on the hives, and Empty Empty boxes off the truck and on the hives..) He has used the "empty empty"s on occasion, and can see no difference . Any frame left in the shop can not be eaten by mice in the field.
Adrian also felt that the correct level of feed could be determined visually when the bees started to draw comb on the bottom of the exisiting upper frames...


Crazy Roland
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top