Beesource Beekeeping Forums banner
1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Why would bees not be making honey in the supers after being on for about 4-weeks now? I do have a queen excluder under the super on each hive. ( 2 hives ). there seems to be about 40-50 bees in each super, just no comb or honey.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
155 Posts
there could be a couple reasons. One is when using queen excluders your bottom boxes gotta be plugged before they will go up. You could try removing your excluders to let them come up. Also if your supers are just foundation, then it is too late in the year unless its an extremely big hive and they have NO room elsewhere. Im in Minnesota and the new foundation supers i used stopped getting drawn out around the third week of july. So my advice is use drawn out comb for supers this late, and if you have drawn out supers on then remove the excluders. That being said you should feed the hell out of your hive right before honey flow, once the feed is stored then put on supers
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,144 Posts
cby, I pretty much would like to know myself!!!...I installed 2 bee packages around the end of april, once they had drawn the comb in the first deep i added the 2nd deep box. Around June 20th the 2nd deep hive body was drawn out so i added a queen excluder and a medium super to both hives. 10 days later NOTHING! No bees in the medium super so i took the queen excluders out and came back in 7 days...Now its July and i check the supers and its now full of bees but nothing is drawn out, everything looks the same as it did when i put the medium supers on back in June. I left both supers on the hives and just yesterday i checked the hives and the still look the same as what they did back in June and here it is the middle of aug! I seen several bees still bringing in pollen but thats about it. So im thinking since they was packages just starting out they missed the major flow because they was busy building up the population! Thats the only answer i could come up with.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,144 Posts
Woodside, i understand that drawn out foundation would be the best thing to add to the hives but when your just starting out and all you have is undrawn foundation when is a good time to get the foundation drawn out????
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
155 Posts
Woodside, i understand that drawn out foundation would be the best thing to add to the hives but when your just starting out and all you have is undrawn foundation when is a good time to get the foundation drawn out????
Next spring, id take your double off your hive and save it for a super and put your box with foundation on as a double sometime in the spring. but this year i think you are just out of luck haha. Who knows, maybe if you give them pollen and a little shot of syrup maybe they will start drawing again.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,021 Posts
Woodside, i understand that drawn out foundation would be the best thing to add to the hives but when your just starting out and all you have is undrawn foundation when is a good time to get the foundation drawn out????
About the only thing I can think of that might help at this time of year is to feed them some sugar syrup. If you are in a dearth, the sugar syrup may get them to start building some comb. I would give them a quart jar of syrup to stimulate comb building, give them about a week and check them again, if they still are not doing anything with the super, I would stop feeding and forget it till next year. One thing you don't want to do is to feed them too much syrup so they backfill the brood chamber too early in fall, causing them to reduce brood rearing. You want the queen to lay as long as possible till the weather gets colder so you get a large population of young bees for wintering. If you get into a good long fall flow, the bees may start working in the super themselves and surprise you. Good luck. John
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
251 Posts
ok just my third year but in my opinion you will need two deeps or deep and two mediums on to get them through the winter and early spring . I want my hives to be about 100 lbs going into winter so whatever combo,deep,medium,medium or whatever the way to get them to draw comb is to feed and feed heavy They will store and draw. Give them 1/4 or 1/2 pollen patty to stimulate brood production. Our main flow stops here in June so no nectar since then Started feeding about a month ago. Peace Dave
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
368 Posts
My area has been in a dearth since early June--and that's when I got my bees. But so far they've drawn and filled 3 medium supers full of brood, pollen, and cured syrup, plus about a super full of other frames that I've nuc'd off from the same hive.

I'm convinced the only reason they're so 'productive' is because I've been giving them several quarts of 1:1 syrup every week since I got them, plus an occasional pollen patty when I feel like it (I think I've given them 2 so far). I didn't expect to get any honey out of my bees this year, so I figured I could give them as good a start as possible so they had all the comb they needed for next year already drawn. It dosn't hurt either of us if they draw the comb on sugar instead of nectar...

Oh, and I give them real wax foudation, not that plastic stuff. Don't know if it makes a difference, but my bees seem to like it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
855 Posts
Queen excluders often serve as honey excluders. Yours is a typical case. Haven't used them for years. As was already mentioned remove them. It is too late for surplus honey, just let the bees accumulate their winter stores. OMTCW
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
I too have been having the same problem with one of my two new hives. One hive has 3 full frames of honey and they are drawing out the foundation on the others in the westerns but the other hive only has 30-40 bees and hardly any drawn foundation in the westerns. I am thinking that I will pull off the queen excluder on the hive that isn't producing and see if it brings the bees up from the brood chamber. Both hives are packed in the brood boxes and there doesn't seem to be any other reason why they wouldn't be producing honey since we still have clover and dandelion in bloom here. Suggestions??? Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Had some good heavy rains here in the last day or so, could this have something to do with, as of this morning, as to why my bees have been bringing in a LOT more polllen? ( many different colors!) Also gave each hive a quart of syrup water and removed the excluders. cby
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,770 Posts
Don't use a queen excluder until the supers comb is built out. My son put on an excluder on our hive wanting to try them out and my favorite hive swarmed. When I looked in I saw the excluder and said why they hell did you put this on. He said I wanted try it. Augh.

They dont go up through an excluder to build but, will to store. So pull off the excluder and they will build out the comb. IMHO.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,021 Posts
Besides not using an excluder, you need to have a decent flow going on also, or the bees still won't build comb. They only build comb if they have something to put in it right away, they don't build comb for future use. John
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
144 Posts
Had the same thing happen to me in SW Wisconsin. Strong start to the season in May with plastic frames and queen excluders.

June 1 it all stopped. I swapped new frames for drawn frames with a friend and that kind of spurred them on.

In frustration I pulled the queen excluders in early July, thinking even brood up in the honey supers was better than nothing.

I checked all five hives over the weekend and it looks like every single one of the bees suddenly realized what they are supposed to be doing up in the honey supers. :D

The goldenrod is blooming and they are bringing in lots of water and pollen as well. All the frames with nectar are just starting to be capped so I figure in two weeks I'll harvest what I get.

Next year I'd say let the queen lay in the first honey super above the brood nest. The workers will draw out the comb and when the brood hatches, checkerboard the super with this comb. They'll put honey in it in no time.

Here's something else: EVERYTHING in SW Wisconsin is two to three weeks early: the apples, tomatoes, melons, etc. and it has been pretty rainy this year...I think that has something to do with it.
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top