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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So this year i made my first decent honey crop. I also fought swarms all spring. Its not practical to pull supers to inspect and reduce down and put them back on. My question is what is the ideal hive configuration to slow the bees down from swarming during the flow? Or does it rely more on drawn super comb, something i still lack plenty of?
 

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So, ask 10 beeks, get 11 opinions ...

It sounds like you have pulled your super(s) and extracted already. I would always want a super on top, and two hive bodies below. Then add supers as needed. What configuration do you currently have? And how exactly did you fight swarms?

My understanding: coming out of winter, virtually all healthy colonies will want to swarm; it's what bees do. You have to give them something else to do. Some strategies include: switch the brood boxes; open the sides of the brood nest; add a super and checkerboard the frames. Once they start building swarm cells or backfilling the broodnest, it's probably too late and you're better off arranging a split.

After initial swarm season has passed, make sure they have the space they need. Extract and add back supers as needed.

HTH,

ETA: You say it's "not practical" to remove the supers to inspect the hive - not sure what you mean by this. If weight is an issue (I can relate to this), you could try switching to 8-frame equipment; or try top bar hives.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I have not extracted yet. My production hives have between 2 and 5 full supers on them. Its these massive 2 deep and 1 medium brood nest that has 5 supers on it that im talking about. Busting with bees and when i did inspect, was finding cells. Example- Would it make sense to reduce these hives to 8 fr of brood prior to flow, give them 2 deeps and a medim to grow brood into while i super?

I was removing frames of brood prior to supering. Its not a weight issue, i can left them. But its not logistically practical to do this much work, when i can do a preliminary setup that would have the same end result.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I have not extracted yet. My production hives have between 2 and 5 full supers on them. Its these massive 2 deep and 1 medium brood nest that has 5 supers on it that im talking about. Busting with bees and when i did inspect, was finding cells. Example- Would it make sense to reduce these hives to 8 fr of brood prior to flow, give them 2 deeps and a medim to grow brood into while i super?

I was removing 1-3 frames of brood prior to supering. Maybe i wasnt removing enough brood? Its not a weight issue, i can lift them. But its not logistically practical to do this much work, when i can do a preliminary setup that would have the same end result.
 

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I keep top of the broodnest open until early reproductive swarm season is over. Until hardwood green up. After that I just make sure they have enough room and infrequent checking of broodnest.
 
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