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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I convinced a swarm to move into my "bait hive" 3 weeks ago; it's 1 nuc atop another. The top has its 5 frames, and the bottom, 2 foundationless frames and a "feeding stand" I created -- which takes the space of 3 frames, mostly.

The Girls have been busy, and're filling up the top pretty fast. Taking syrup nicely, too. But ... will they, when they need the room upstairs, start with the lower 2 frames? Or (!) will they swarm once they've filled just the top box? My plan was to move all 7 frames -- once bees started work on the bottom 2 -- into a deep, then complete it with 3 more frames.

Anybody have experience or insight into this scenario? I can imagine it going either way. Since my strong hive multi-swarmed this year (leaving a skeleton staff) and my weak hive is mostly just muddling along, I have a lot of time and emotion invested in this promising little hivelet.

Thx much for any ideas/anecdotes, warnings, etc ....

Mitch
 

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If it were me, I would want them to get busy in the five frames above, and then I would move them into a deep without worrying about what they might or might not be doing down below. When the top is full of bees and brood, give them the big house.
 
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I convinced a swarm to move into my "bait hive" 3 weeks ago; it's 1 nuc atop another. The top has its 5 frames, and the bottom, 2 foundationless frames and a "feeding stand" I created -- which takes the space of 3 frames, mostly.

The Girls have been busy, and're filling up the top pretty fast. Taking syrup nicely, too. But ... will they, when they need the room upstairs, start with the lower 2 frames? Or (!) will they swarm once they've filled just the top box? My plan was to move all 7 frames -- once bees started work on the bottom 2 -- into a deep, then complete it with 3 more frames.

Anybody have experience or insight into this scenario? I can imagine it going either way. Since my strong hive multi-swarmed this year (leaving a skeleton staff) and my weak hive is mostly just muddling along, I have a lot of time and emotion invested in this promising little hivelet.

Thx much for any ideas/anecdotes, warnings, etc ....

Mitch
Mitch,
swarms almost always go to the top of the "space" they moved into. they attach comb at the top so hence they start there.
I would not screw around moving them down, and leave them be for a while IF they have space. be 21 days till the first new bee hatches the less you disturb them until then the better off You will be. if anything since they are "small" in size add a piece of foam to the top over the lid and perhaps a barrel or tipped wheelbarrow in the back for a wind break.
Here we have frost 3 of the nights this week, and small hives will have challenges keeping brood warm thru the night.
since the first bees hatch in 21 days, and some will die until then, they likely will be ok in that setup for a month, then you can move them to a "final" hive. you can take the top NUC off lid intact, and check the bottom 2 frames, at the 3.5 week point, IF they have the bottom frames built then move them a bit early, IMO you should be fine for 4 to 5 weeks, but then YES they will out grow the 7 frame setup. IMO I would at the 28 day point when brood is hatching, go in inspect, and remove the feeder and add 3 more frames as is. when moving to a final set up use a 2 deep and leave the entire 5 over 5 intact, IE place the empty frames at the sides of the existing colony, "brood nest integrity" IMO stuffing empty frames into a 4-7 frame hive is bad advice, in a 30 frame hive fine.

GG
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Much obliged for the input; makes sense to me. Frosts're over here, I think, so that shouldn't be a concern, at least ....

Mitch
 
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