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Hello all,
A couple of the many questions I am not too sure of so I thought I would ask. This year is going to be my first year. I'm starting out with two hives all mediums. I ordered two 4# packages of RUSSIAN-"YUGO" CARNIOLAN from Honey Bee Genetics. How many mediums do I start with for brood 1, 2 or 3? Then if they look to be doing well this year would you put on the queen excluder and had a super? Or would you leave the excluder off the first year and just add supers as needed?

I'm thinking two med to start and add supers as needed without excluder and just let them do what they want, with my observation. What do you think?

Thanks for the help,
Jaamin
 

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Welcome to the forum, and good luck to you in your new, exciting endeavor! My inclination is to plan on three mediums for the brood nest, but as I don't run mediums, I'll let those who do chime in more authoritatively.

I have found it necessary to have as many as 5 shallow or medium supers for nectar storage and honey production. Sometimes I need them, sometimes I don't. But if I don't have them available, I lose.

Some folks argue for the use of the excluder, others say it excludes honey. I have tried it both ways, and tend to leave the excluder in the shop. As the bees expand the brood nest, it helps reduce the propensity to swarm. Particularly if, as Imirie and Wright and others point out, you keep plenty of empty storage space above them. There will come the point when the band of honey keeps the queen from going higher. Then they start backfilling, and by season's end there is no longer any brood in my extracting supers. I simply wait for any remaning brood to hatch out, and the house bees fill the cells with capped honey, which I then extract.

However, all beekeeping is locale. You'll learn what works for you in your locale, as you do it. Don't worry about making mistakes. You will! That's part of the learning curve.

If you haven't yet discovered the "Point of View" "POV" section on the home page for the forum, check it out. Read the articles there. I've found them most helpful. And of course, ask a question of 10 beeks, get 12 answers. If you want a different opinion, ask me, and I'll give it. :lpf:
Regards,
Steven
 

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If you are just using foundation then skip the excluder as they will be reluctant to move through it to draw out comb. If it is draw, there is a better chance they will work it.

Like others say, start with one medium and once they fill it mostly out add the next. Remember to feed to help them draw out the comb.
 

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The first year the goal is to draw good comb in the brood chambers and allow the colony to grow. The excluder would not help in this case. Watch for queen cells as the bees draw the comb and don't let the population outgrow the number of boxes. Put on syrup and keep it on until the bees stop taking it.
 
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