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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The delays on delivery pushed my nucs back to the week I am out of town. So I arranged for a local beek to pick up and install them for me which he did today. They were 4 frame nucs but he said each one had 1 empty frame with foundation but no drawn comb and one frame with honey. So each nuc was essentially 2 frames of brood and bees. Without being home to check them myself, I can't really call the supplier to complain. But has anyone else bought 4 frame nucs with only 2 actual brood frames and one indrawn frame? Should I be upset? Or is this normal? I'm not real happy based on his report.
 

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The delays on delivery pushed my nucs back to the week I am out of town. So I arranged for a local beek to pick up and install them for me which he did today. They were 4 frame nucs but he said each one had 1 empty frame with foundation but no drawn comb and one frame with honey. So each nuc was essentially 2 frames of brood and bees. Without being home to check them myself, I can't really call the supplier to complain. But has anyone else bought 4 frame nucs with only 2 actual brood frames and one indrawn frame? Should I be upset? Or is this normal? I'm not real happy based on his report.
To me the frames of brood should be specified ahead. I'm used to a 4 frame nuc including 3 frames of brood, 1 frame of feed/honey. But that's what is specified by my supplier. I would be shocked to find a frame of foundation in a nuc!
Luke
 

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Actually it is quite common practice with some NUC suppliers to dole out just what you got. As sharpdog said it should be specified by the supplier ahead of the time you purchase exactly what you will be getting. Under good terms a 4 frame NUC should have 3 frames of brood and bees, 1 frame of honey/pollen stores with a mated queen that is actively laying and brood of all ages in the nuc. A 5 frame NUC should be the same but with 4 frames of brood and bees. Some suppliers like to say that the foundation frame is a frame for them to "WORK ON". Which means that your nuc is going to take longer to build up due to having to pull out comb once some more bees are available to do so after emerging. ALWAYS make sure you pin down the supplier and make sure of what he/she is selling you and the terms prior to doing so. Other wise you may end up with a lame duck.
 

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The nucs that I sell are 4 frames of. Brood and 1 frame of stores, which usually has a small patch ofbrood also. I want repeat customers so selling them a poor nucs is not only bad for them but also bad for me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The nucs were sold by IFA in Cortez colo. I'm probably going to call today and at least let them know I am un happy. Or I may wait until I can look for myself when I get home on Wednesday.
 

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Nucs are often made up with foundation - the plan being that over time (before the nuc is delivered to the customer) the bees will have drawn out the frame and if the queen is any good that fame should be full of brood. Sounds like you got a nuc that didn't have adequate time to grow. This is an often occurrence when people treat getting their bees as the purchase of a manufactured item rather than an agricultural product. That mindset affects sellers too.
 

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Out of curiosity...what is the approximate price range for these deminucs?
 

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Nucs are often made up with foundation - the plan being that over time (before the nuc is delivered to the customer) the bees will have drawn out the frame and if the queen is any good that fame should be full of brood. Sounds like you got a nuc that didn't have adequate time to grow. This is an often occurrence when people treat getting their bees as the purchase of a manufactured item rather than an agricultural product. That mindset affects sellers too.
Nuc buyers want them asap - ideally with no foundation, empty comb, or drone brood. Lots of brood (in all stages), bees, and just enough stores - not too much, that would be buying honey instead of bees. Oh, and an actively laying queen - not just a bunch of parts assembled right before sale day. And of course not quite swarmy. Not apologizing for any ones weak nucs, but pick a day a few weeks in the future, and try to have a dozon or so fantasy nucs like this ready and just right on your big day.

It all sounds good in theory to say "I will sell no nuc before it's time." But everyone should just try it a time or two.

The 8 frame mediums that I am selling are strong but may have one side of foundation showing on the outside frames today - by Saturday (the projected pickup day) that may be drawn out and they might be starting to get too strong, but if I would let them the customers would have picked them up a week ago - when they would have looked a lot weaker. So what is the best thing to do?
 

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Ricky why didn't you just have the seller hang on to the Nucs until you were able to pick them up the following week? You could complain to the seller. He could then return your money. And then you would have nothing. How much did you pay for the nucs? I would say it's best to accept things the way that they are and move forward.
 

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my two 5frm nuc each came with one frame being drawn out. I moved all 5 frms right into my 10frm brood box. 3 weeks later they STILL ignored that 5 frame that had never really been drawn out. Went staright for my foundationless and left that 5th frame completely alone. I'm giving it back to my supplier when I return the nuc boxes for credit. It's an ugly one piece frame/fouindation that has ALL kinds of nooks and crannies for SBH to hide int. In fact when i took it out and replaced it with another foundationless a half dozen SBH came running out of the crevices. Personally? I wasnt mad that the 5th frame wasnt filled with brood/eggs/honey. Figured it was there to give her some room. The other 4 frames were filled to the max and I havent been at all disappointed with the performance of either nuc. They're going gangbusters bringing in and building comb. I was just so happy to have bees after working towards it for 9 months that I didnt care.
 

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I sell 4 frame nucs. I tell them up front that they will receive 4 drawn frames consisting of brood and honey.
I start with 2 frames of bees and brood with honey at the top of most frames. I feed until two empty frames are drawn out. Sometimes it will be 3 frames of brood and one frame of honey. Sometimes 2 of each. Just depends on how they work.
What you received, especially with undrawn frames, most would not consider a 4 frame nuc worthy of being sold as a 4 frame nuc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Out of curiosity...what is the approximate price range for these deminucs?
The 2 nucs were 140$ each.

To the other question. When they called to tell me the nucs were delayed I told them that pushed them back to a weekend I could not pick them up. I asked them what my options were. They told me they would not guarantee them till I could get there and they had no other options except possibly canceling the order. I had no choice but to pay someone else to pick them up and install them.

Thanks everyone for the responses. Just wanted to check to see if what I got was normal. Sounds like it is not. I will be home Tuesday night late so I can't check on them till Wednesday
 

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I helped a couple install some of these nuc's also . It was a frame feeder (empty) 1 completely new undrawn frame 1 frame of pollen / honey sort of not really drawn out well 50% drawn. 1 frame of brood capped (I could tell it was an older frame since it had nails to hold it together at the top instead of staples) and 1 frame of new laid eggs probably 6-7 days old . I had expected more brood and eggs . I felt bad they paid the same price you did for those nuc's.
 

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Honestly, what's the difference other than time to build up? A 5 frame nuc busting at the seams that swarms two weeks later is just as bad IMO. So there's that balance that must be struck. I'd say 3-4 occupied frames, 3 of them having brood and an undrawn or frame in progress would be about perfect. Buyer has about two weeks before they gotta transfer the nuc to a full size equipment and all the frames will be drawn out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Honestly, what's the difference other than time to build up?
Well. Time to build up is the main reason I spent money for nucs and didn't buy packages. I bought nucs because I didn't want to wait for a package to build up. So it's a HUGE difference.
 

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Well then you should Man Up and let that supplier have a piece of your mind. Don't let that supplier walk all over you. How dare he do that to you?
 

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You may not have much recourse this time around, but here is how you can have an effect - ask around and find a local producer who treated his customers right, and go ahead and get on his list now for next year. Don't haggle the price, don't even worry if you will need them or not - someone will. This will both help to assure that you get good bees next year and give the good guy incentive to do it again.

Once you get rolling plan to make your own increase every year.
 

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David is absolutely right - suppliers of good bees tend to sell out early and are worth what they charge. People who have bees available to order late are often suppliers to stay away from.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 · (Edited)
Well, I got home and found out a little more. It appears what I recieved was basically a package dropped onto 3 drawn frames and a new queen put in just before shipping. I called my friend who also got 4 nucs. One of his didn't even have a queen in it, it had a couple queen cells. The nucs were bought from IFA but the package says Jester Bees on it. I don't think jester sold the nucs tho. Only the boxes. I called IFA and am waiting for a return call I also sent an email asking if his nucs were packages dupped over frames with a queen tossed in. (I didn't use those words, I was more diplomatic) I Peaked in this morning, and it looks like barely enough bees to cover 2 frames. Not reall happy about what I got. I learned a lesson.

will follow up if I hear from IFA or the supplier.
 

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Ricky - I dont think they came from Jester - I think those were just the system they used. I think they came out of California and maybe it was from wooten - not sure about that. Dont quote me on that guess.
 
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