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Discussion Starter #1
Well I was paranoid about my first colony not making it through the winter and it looks like I may have been too helpful with the feeding.
It looks like I screwed up by leaving my winter feeder-spacer on too long on top of three medium supers and now the girls have filled it with lobes of comb & brood connecting down to the top of my frames. Any suggestions of what to do now?? It’s packed with bees, and seeing brood tells me there's a good chance the queens in there between the lobes of comb. I'm tempted to just scrape them off into the top super, cover it up and hope for the best. Or should I set it in a new super and do an ugly split of sorts? should I look for the queen?
 

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Just throw some smoke to them and push them down and cut it out. Done deal.....

If the comb is long or big enough, cut it out and rubber band it into empty frames and give it to them...Still a done deal.....
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The combs are roughly 2"x2"x8" across the lid of the winter feeder. empty frame with foundation or just the frame and 4 or so rubber bands around the whole thing to keep them from falling out?
 

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Always keep an eye out for the queen, especially when cleaning up a mess... I would clean it up. Carefully. scrap the comb. Cut things apart carefully. You can always smoke them down. A queen will seldom stay around the smoke, she will run.
 

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If it is warm enough to work your bees that is what I would do also. A little smoke to drive them down and then just scrape off the burr comb. If they have any stores in it set it out away from the hive and they will rob it out. No need to go overboard with the smoke either, just a few puffs and work a couple of frames at a time. Yes you are going to loose some brood in the process but that is just part of it.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
All, Thank you for the quick responses! I just finished cleaning everything up. The queen was there on the last large comb and chased/shook her down below, she clearly didn't want to leave even with s puff (hope she made it). The combs (4) were larger than I had guessed (12" x 3") so I went with ordy28's suggestion and scraped them off with a 6" drywall spatula and set them inside of 4 empty frames with rubber bands, added 4 frames of bare foundation and set a new medium body on top.
Last spring this package (which came in May) was so slow to build comb (Russian Hybs), and with no apparent sources of nectar I didn't think I had any reason to think they'd be building so quickly - guess I was wrong.

I have three more packages coming in a week, it looks like I will be able to spare some drawn comb to help start them off better than last year.

Again, Thank you for your advice - It's a great help.
Rich
 
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