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Hello, I am new to the forum. I was in my 2 10 Frame Deeps this past weekend. The queen was in the 2nd Deep (top) box and a lot of activity there. It did not look like a lot of honey up there either. I went to the first deep and there was not any honey in that area either. I am concerned going into the fall, that I should move the Top Deep to the bottom. I am feeding them now with 2:1 sugar water.

I am just seeking some opinion on what to do with the deeps or just leave them in place and not reverse them.

Thanks for your advice!
 

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It would help us help you if you included your location in your profile. That way we could give you better advice. The queen wants to naturally move up as it gets cold, I see no reason to move the hive bodies. The will not store honey in the bottom box this time of year as they start from the bottom and move up during the winter. If they do not have a lot of honey, that is the first thing you have to take care of ASAP. I live in Maryland and we have to have 60 lbs of honey in our hives to make it through the winter. We have about a month left to get them up to weight where I live.
 

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Leave the boxes the way they are and keep that feed on them constantly. As they get it stored in that top box, the bees will move some brooding down as well as store any incoming pollen down. It's getting late in the season for northern hemisphere so it's important to get the stores up to good levels this time of year. The further north you are the more critical it will be. (if you are in the northern hemisphere).
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you for the replies!

I have added the 2:1 sugar water and they have consuming that quickly. I put a gallon in there on Sunday and it is about 1/2 gone today. Should I add any pollen patties this time of year?

Thank you!
 

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Is there any pollen stored in the hive now? I myself like fat bees and good sized cluster going into winter, so I would feed pollen sub, probably a 1 pound patty every week, or at least every other week, depending on hive conditions, through the end of October. Others would not, as honey is what's needed for over winter energy for the bees. But, I like fat bees going into winter. Read fat bees articles on Randy Oliver's web site: http://scientificbeekeeping.com/fat-bees-part-1/
A lot will depend on your location, some people have hives that get fall pollen flows in abundance, so of course in that situation you would not want to feed pollen sub.

And as for the syrup, I'd keep it on until they get 8 frames of mostly capped honey in that top box (a couple of mostly empty drawn frames is good to give them cluster area to move up as they need). The pollen sub with it will get them to brood more the end of the season here so that you have a strong cluster to keep themselves warm over winter.
 

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At this point in the year in my climate zone, I arrange the brood and pollen frames so that they are all in the botom box. If they don't all fit, I move the ones that are closest to emerging to the middle of the top box. The queen goes to the bottom box. Mite treatment strips are added and a queen excluder is placed. If I have space left over in the bottom box then full honey frames go to the outside. In the second box I place the fullest honey frames to the outside, emptiest frames towards the middle. Then the feeder goes on. You need to be using an efficient feeder now. My objective is to get the second box filled wall to wall and a nice honey dome established in the bottom box. If I can do that then they'll have plenty of food for the winter. By Halloween the queen excluder must come off so that she can move up as the cluster moves up.

How are you feeding? You said your bees move 1/2 gallon of 2:1 in two days. That is one quart a day. It's not very good. I feed four gallons at once and a strong hive will put it all way in four days, or about 1 gallon per day. I use three different kinds of feeders. I have only three Ceracell hive top feeders but I have a lot of frame feeders. I use the hive top feeder and then I fill supers with four frame feeders each and put them on top. I also have a rapid feeder, which I like very much, but it doesn't hold very much and has to be refilled daily. I can cover half my apiary at once. Once they have put away four gallons I move the feeders to another hive, giving the first ones a few days to dehydrate the syrup before returning the feeders to any hive that needs topping off. I try and have all my feeding done by mid October in my climate.
 

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I prefer the four gallon hive top feeders for fall feeding -- four gallons of 2:1 with a little apple cider vinegar can disappear in a day or two, all as stored honey. Feeding 1:1 tends to make them want to make brood and they won't take enough -- gotta feed it faster than they can use it to get stores.

One of my first hives, a swarm that was given to me, taught me the apple cider vinegar trick. Had plain 2:1 on there and they just sipped at it for a week and they were very light. Stirred in the vinegar (a tablespoon per gallon or so) and they sucked down seven more gallons in three or four days. Nice full hive.
 
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