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I am a fairly new bee keeper and have a question about spacing of frames in both the brood hives and honey supers. I have decided to go all medium in my third year. I read a lot about giving space to prevent swarming but do not see much detail as to what this actually means. Is it OK to space brood mediums to 9 or 8 frames or should this only be done on the honey supers? I can certainly understand the reason for the honey supers as to a thicker cell for harvest. Should I do the same with brood boxes for spacing? What does a beek actually do to space to prevent swarming?

James R.
 

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The term giving the bees space does not refer to the space between the frames. It refers to making sure the colony has room to grow, that the queen does not run out of room to lay. The typical two deep brood boxes is good but during the summer honey flows that area would get too small because of all the nectar coming in so you have to add extra supers for more space.
The standard is for frames to touch each other in a a brood box and to leave about a quarter inch between frames in a honey super. I just put in 8 frames and space them evenly. Frames touching each other are made the size they are to optimize the bee space between the combs. Streatching the comb longer by only using 8 or 9 in a honey super makes uncaping a whole lot easier.
 

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>>>What does a beek actually do to space to prevent swarming?<<<
what "Giving space" or "room" in the brood box means is to take out a frame of drawn comb and put in a frame of foundation, or for some it means taking out a full frame of honey and puting in a empty frame into the bood nest.

you can go to 9 frames in the honey super once your frames our drawn out.
 

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I run 8-frame, medium supers throughout my honey production colonies. In the supers I use for brood, I install slatted racks on the inside side walls (see: Vertical Slatted Racks, to improve ventilation and give additional cluster area. I would advise against increasing the spacing between combs in the brood areas, doing that will only make it more difficult to manipulate brood combs.

What is usually meant by reducing congestion is to add empty comb into the core of the brood nest; I do this by removing sealed brood, which I use to assemble nucs and replacing those combs with foundationless frames, empty combs, or undrawn PF120 frames. It's also a good way to increase the number of drawn brood combs which can then be used in many productive ways.
 
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