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I will be starting a 3# package with an Italian queen in a 8 frame medium hive in the spring. I will be only running medium equipment and was wondering how many hive bodies to start with. The hive will be foundationless and will have a waxed starter strip. Is 1 medium body enough space to start them in or should I put 2 on right from the beginning?
 

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I started with just one. When it was 80% drawn, I added a second and then swapped a frame or 2 from top to bottom. They drew out the second VERY fast, and then i repeated. The never finished the 3rd due to the dearth, but, what they did do, they will be getting back very soon....
 

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Depending on your plans for a honey crop, you may want to plan on a total of 7 med. depth supers for each colony. Three for the brood nest, balance for extracting.

Hive in the first, and feed to stimulate brood rearing and comb building. As mentioned, when the first is almost drawn out, add the second, and bait it with a comb from #1. Keep feeding... when the second is drawn out, add the third the same way, keep feeding. I keep feeding until the bees quit take the feed, or my brood boxes are drawn out. When I put the first extracting super on, I quit feeding.

That way I know they have all the brood area needed, and aren't depending on the natural honey flow to do that. I want them to use the flow to a) pay their rent :lpf: and b) lay in stores for next winter and spring's kick-start.
Regards,
Steven
 

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I'm starting with 8 frame mediums also. I attended my first local beeks meeting the other night and someone suggested that I should use a queen excluder because, with 8 medium instead of 10 deep, the queen is more likely to wander up into the honey supers.

Perhaps I should start a new post for this, but thought I would camp on to this one for starters. And forgive me if I'm not using the right terminology yet. I'm learning something new every day.

I would appreciate some thoughts from the experienced medium 8 framers out there. THANK YOU!

Good Luck NY_BLUES.
 

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I run all 8 frame and don't use excluders. I run 1 deep and two mediums for brood. It's rare for the queen to even use the second medium. (I like to winter my hives fat) Never had one go into the 4th box.
 

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Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
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I quit using excluders decades ago and have not used them with 10 frame hives, as well as eight frame hives. With deeps and shallows as well as all mediums. If the queen needs room to lay, more power to her. The bees will not scatter brood all over the place. They want the brood in the brood nest. The brood nest, will expand to span three or four eight frame medium boxes during the peak of the buildup. If you confine the queen only one or two by using an excluder they will almost certainly swarm.
 
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