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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Earlier this summer I pulled 2 medium supers off, placed them back for cleaning.

What I have as of this last weekend are 3 supers with 7 or 8 frames each that are capped in the center (an oval about 6" long), with about 1" of curing honey all around. 7 or 8 frames per super. Maybe they will cap it yet this year, maybe not, the farmer nearby just mowed the flowering alfalfa which was keeping it going. I'm not seeing a lot of nectar coming into my observation hive (@ different location)- they haven't capped anything new for a while.

Should I open up the capped cells on the top 2 supers- will they move it down/(up?) into one super? If I extract now I'll get a large amount of uncured honey along with the good stuff.

I've read this may help, but I'm not sure how well.

Thanks for thoughts-
 

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Several older references say that if the frame is at least 2/3 capped, it's all right to extract. Last September, I put frames in my hand extractor without cutting off the cappings first. I gently extracted all the uncapped honey first (a little watery), put it aside for myself (just in case it fermented, don't want to sell or gift any of it), then removed the cappings on the rest of the frame and extracted as usual. I'm still using this "uncapped" honey and it has been absolutely fine. My guess is that it was close to being capped that late in the year, so the moisture levels were fine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks! I may just do this, with this info. Spinning them without uncapping to separate the types is a great thought.

If I can get them to move everything into 1 medium though I am interested in that to. what are the experiences folks have had with trying to get them to move things around on their own?
 

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I really don't know if this was the right thing to do or not. But I had some jacked up drone comb that was built off and away from my pierco frame. They have since filled it with sugar water and it was really making it hard to work this nuc that I set up. I took the frame and scraped it all off into a hive top feeder (with the float removed) on a weak hive. With all the honey in there and the wax to climb around on and keep them from drowing. They have no choice but to chew around in the wax and move that honey down into their deeps. Again I don't know if it was "the right" thing to do or not but I did it and it makes sense to me.

-Dan
 

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Spinning frames without uncapping is just a good way of tearing up combs.

Pull those supers off, and put on a couple or three empty supers of drawn comb. Then put your boxes of honey back on top. The bees will cap off the honey in the top boxes, and then move down to the empty supers and start working. They don't like those empty combs right above the broodnest.

You can also completely uncap the frames in a box, and then put that box above the inner cover. The bees will move all the honey down to the supers below the inner cover.

Personally, I would shake the frames - if no nectar drops fly out, it is safe to extract.

Also, bees prefer to eat nectar over honey. Honey is an emergency food. If your flow is ending, the nectar consumption will quickly surpass the incoming nectar, and the open nectar/honey in the frames will start getting eaten right away. That will leave you with frames of capped honey and fewer open cells.
 
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