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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Useing all 10frame mediums. Hived in may, At this time have 4 mediums on each hive. First hive seems to be ok. Bottom super lots of brood,eggs and larvae. 2nd up brood and some honey. 3rd up lots of honey. Top mostly drawn comb, a little honey. Hive#2 bottom no brood, no honey. 2nd up scattered brood, mostly honey. 3rd up 6 frames brood, some honey. top super 1 frame honey, drawn comb.Heres what i did on this hive. I moved bottom to 3rd up and moved #3 to bottom. Was this the right move. (Side note, No supercede or swarm cells in either hive) Did this newbee do the right thing or did i mess up.
 

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It's hard to say a definitive yes or no on this one. Some will say that you should not disturb the brood rearing area; while a minority of others will say it ok to move the brood to the bottom. What's done is done.

You will think you are a beekeeping genius or a complete failure depending on if it works or not. Next time you do this manipulation it may have (and probably will have) completely different outcome.

Sorry for the ambiguous answer, but that is the way beekeeping has taught me to be.

Its like washing your car.
  • Do you start at the top (wash the dirt down) or the bottom (where most of the caked on mud is)?
  • Do you do something special to the tires or the engine compartment?
  • Do you use the foaming brush or would you never let one of those things touch your paint.
  • Do you use the wax or the spot free rinse every time?
I have found that as long as you do not rinse first and then put the soap on and drive away, you will be successful to a large degree.

Beekeeping is much the same way, some do a lot of manipulation, while others do very little; all with varying degrees of success.

I have had to consciously try to stop "helping" so much and let the bee do what bees do. My bee have been better off for it.

I think we all have stages in our beekeeping careers and the "I did what seems to make sense, but now I am second guessing myself" stage is something we can all identify with. Like the "I have to get bees" stage and the "I have to get more bees" stage, and the "What am I going to do with all these bees" stage and the "WOW that's a lot of full honey supers, I need to get busy(my current stage BTW:thumbsup:)" stage.

Here are a few question to help refine any other answers.

Do you have plenty of eggs, brood, and sealed brood?
Do you plan to winter in 4 mediums?


You will probably be just fine and the bees will figure it out, I have no
doubt.

RKR
 

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You will think you are a beekeeping genius or a complete failure depending on if it works or not.
I hope Ken proves to be a beekeeping genius because I just did the same thing on a couple of my hives. Each had three medium brood boxes with bees boiling out the top. A quick check of the bottom box showed no brood and minimal stores. It was like the brood hatched out earlier and they forgot all about it.

Wayne
 

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I run all mediums too, and the majority of my hives are layed out this way(by the bees): bottom box has very little brood, mostly lots of pollen and honey, second box has all brood except two outside frames which have pollen and honey, third box has a little less brood than second box, and more honey. Fourth box has all honey so far. Bees seem to not want brood near the entrance if given plenty of room upstairs for brood, if you confine queen in lower box for brood with an excluder then they have no choice and will fill it with brood. John
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I don't have an excluder on hives. My thought process on this move was by moving the brood back down she can still move up and they won't backfill the super below her with honey
 

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Ken, actually at this time of the year I wouldn't think it matters if they backfill the lower box because they need to get set up for winter and you want the cluster down at the bottom eventually with plenty of stores. Reversing brood boxes is practiced in the spring as you may know to help prevent swarming, but I have personally never done it or heard of it commonly done in the fall. John
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
John, I plan on going into winter with 3 mediums. I had put the 4th on after they had drawn out the 3rd medium, after which they proceeded to consume the stores during our dearth. They are now starting to bring in pollen and nectar.Should i pull that 4th off.
 

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Ken, that's a tough one to call about the 4th box right now. With the season the way its been so far (great in my area) they may fill that 4th with honey if we have a real good fall flow from goldenrod, aster, etc. However, at the same time, you don't want their stores spread out in too many boxes with none of them filled entirely this close to the end of the season if the flow stumbles, especially wintering in 3 mediums, which is what I am doing also. This is what I am doing with mine, all of my hives are in three medium brood boxes right now, I would say all boxes are half brood half honey/pollen. I have a 4th box on about 1/4 of my hives because they are stronger in bees than the others, and are storing honey in the 4th to different degrees. I just extracted my early crop two weeks ago, and those 4th boxes were the empty extracted combs put back on some of the hives. After one week of being on the hive some of them are already completely filled with new honey and are being capped again, just amazing to me.:thumbsup: And they did this between flows, so this shows what they are capable of doing in a short time if conditions are good. Keep us posted. John
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
John, I appreciate your input. Being a first year newbee I will file your information away as a learning experiance for me. I will keep you updated. Thanks again, Ken
 
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