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New packages have been installed one week today..they have been on 1:1 sugar since installed...about how long before we add another brood box? Barefoot Belle....aka Kaveman's other half....thx
 

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It depends on your own personal beekeeping management style, type of bees, and local conditions.

Every beekeeper develops his/her own methods. Some put a second brood box/super on, when the first is 70% occupied, moving a frame or two of brood into the center of the new super. In some locations doing this by the time they've reached 70% occupancy, may be too late to help reduce/eliminate swarming. Most all management with beekeeping is local and personal.

It also depends on the type of gear you are using; Top Bar hives, Langstroth, 10-frame deep, 8-frame deep; 10-frame medium, 8-frame medium, or combinations of the above, and etc.

There are so many management permutations that it is even difficult to remember them, in order to describe them all.
 

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Just to do a little bit of hijacking.

I started foundationless with two 8 frame mediums and probably 4 lbs of bees from a tree rescue.

They have quickly filled the top and are now expanding below. Should I leave them at it or should I reverse the boxes? I did take one frame with syrup stores, pollen and open brood and move it down, which in hind sight I don't think I should have, but they capped some of it now soi guess they are doing fine.

One thought I have in the leaving them alone category is that they have already kind of created a honey band with all that syrup they are storing (way too much, but I cut them off today). I think our Chinese tallow bloom/flow is about to hit.
 

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I'm not more experienced than you are but may I suggest pulling two frames from outer edge of brood an putting them in a third box on top. Fill the holes with empty frames and they should start working on that third box. Seems like the Tallow was in bloom around the first of June last year. Leaves are showing up now, so looks like it's on schedule.
 

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If you are drawing foundation as I assume you are, when you have bees working on frames 7 and eight and they are partially drawn on the outside half, pull foundation frames 9 and 10, slide 7 and 8 to the outside and put 9 and 10 in the holes left. How long that will take to happen is unknowable. It depends on your weather, flowers blooming, night time temperatures and on and on. A few days after making sure the bees are working on the very outermost side of the frames, pull a brood frame from the middle of your brood chamber and replace it with a frame of foundation. Then place that frame of brood in the middle of your upper brood box and and set it on.

When your bees are working on frames 7 and 8 move 9 and 10 inside them! Repeat as required. I hope you get 8 deeps high!
New packages have been installed one week today..they have been on 1:1 sugar since installed...about how long before we add another brood box? Barefoot Belle....aka Kaveman's other half....thx
 

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A lot of people say when the bees are using 8 of the 10 frames or 80%
If you put it on too soon the bees might work upward instead of finishing the outside frames.
 

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If you are drawing foundation as I assume you are, when you have bees working on frames 7 and eight and they are partially drawn on the outside half, pull foundation frames 9 and 10, slide 7 and 8 to the outside and put 9 and 10 in the holes left. How long that will take to happen is unknowable. It depends on your weather, flowers blooming, night time temperatures and on and on. A few days after making sure the bees are working on the very outermost side of the frames, pull a brood frame from the middle of your brood chamber and replace it with a frame of foundation. Then place that frame of brood in the middle of your upper brood box and and set it on.

When your bees are working on frames 7 and 8 move 9 and 10 inside them! Repeat as required. I hope you get 8 deeps high!
Very good advice,,,,,,
 

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I would only add that occasionally bees will refuse to use the outside of the outer combs -- don't wait for them to finish there before adding the next box. My rule of thumb is that there needs to be enough bees in the hive to cover a couple of the new frames, otherwise they won't do anything with them. Baiting them up with brood is a good idea and should reduce the time it takes for them to "discover" the new space and use it.

Remember that a package will slowly shrink for at least three weeks, until the first round of new brood emerges. The area the queen lays will expand when the new brood takes over nurse duties, so there is a lag there and then a rapid increase in the number of bees five or six weeks after you install the package.

Peter
 
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