Advice for fall ????

Discussion in 'Beekeeping 101' started by tcchris, Aug 17, 2010.

  1. tcchris

    tcchris New Member

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    Hi , I have two hives that we started late this year . Hive one is weak , one large brood chamber with about 6 frames drawn . They had problems , but are recovering . Hive two , started with a nuc , is booming . A large and a medium completely filled out with brood and capped honey . We have added a second medium about a week ago .
    1. I assume that in Ga. , a large and a medium is sufficient since winters are mild ?
    2. If 1. is true , then my plan is to take the extra medium from hive two , and add it to hive one .

    At some point , it is my understanding that hives stop breeding and begin backfilling the brood chambers with honey for winter .Does adding supers in the fall interfere with this process ? I assume we have a goldenrod bloom coming . Although i have not really noticed how much goldenrod we have around here .
    I guess my final question is about the timing of moving the super from hive two over to hive one .
    Also , should I keep adding supers to the strong hive , and possibly get a little honey , or leave the large and medium only and let them backfill ?

    I may be over complicating this , I tend to do that when I am new at something . Any advice is appreciated .

    Also , between posting questions and reading others , this forum has been very helpful to me , so I want to thank all who take the time to help .
     
  2. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    If they were mine, I would simply switch places with the two hives. The foragers from the strong hive will take up in the weak hive to strengthen it, and reduce the population of the stronger hive.
     

  3. Hobie

    Hobie New Member

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    iddee, you come up with the greatest common sense advice. Simple, yet elegant. Hope you know how much that is appreciated!
     
  4. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Yep. That's one of the benefits of being lazy. You learn the simple, easy ways.
     
  5. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    havent they always said to be the best at what you do you got to be lazy. That way you will look for a quicker better way to do things :thumbsup:
     
  6. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    Give the hardest job to the laziest fella and he will find the easiest way to do it.
     
  7. tcchris

    tcchris New Member

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    Thanks , It's raining today , but I will put it on the todo list .
    Do the guard bees not fight with the returning foragers?
     
  8. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    Nope If they are bringing in the groceries they will be welcomed into the hive. If the show up empty handed the fight is on
     
  9. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    snip:
    1. I assume that in Ga. , a large and a medium is sufficient since winters are mild ?

    tecumseh:
    yes a deep and medium depth are generally sufficient almost anywhere in the southern US if the two boxes are heavy with feed resources.

    snip:
    Does adding supers in the fall interfere with this process ? I assume we have a goldenrod bloom coming .

    tecumseh:
    if there is space available in the bottom brood nest generally they will ignore the added super (I am assuming you add this at the top of the stack. generally the fall is the time of the year when the brood nest slowly contracts and the bees back fill this space with pollen and nectar if there is any fall flow.

    beyond the method provided by Iddee* the other option would be one of leveling. Leveling is almost literally stealing from the very rich to give some opportunity of survival to the struggling or poor doing hive. Leveling resources (frames of brood and/or feed) between the two hives should be done in a incremental matter so as not to negatively impact 'rich' hive nor provide too much extra room for the poor to cover.

    the fall of the year is also an excellent time to check for mite loads and put on a bit of feed and medication. actually I cannot think of anywhere in Georgia you might be where you couldn't if necessary feed bees all winter long.

    *I ain't certain about Iddee version of easy here since I would be laying flat on my back after trying to move a hive that consisted of one deep and two supers even a very short distance.
     
  10. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Tec, haven't I taught you the little trick of drafting two young bucks??? :thumbsup: :wave: :D
     
  11. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    Weak of the mind and strong of the back.

    What better way to teach those young fellas all about bees, and get a pretty girl out there and some how they get twice as strong :lol: :shock:
     
  12. tcchris

    tcchris New Member

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    Turns out , the strong hive ignored the added super , so I took it off today . It was just a hiding place for shb .
    I guess the weak hive will just have to tough it out on their own , I will feed this winter though .
     
  13. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    iddee sezs:
    haven't I taught you the little trick of drafting two young bucks???

    tecumseh:
    oh my... your wordage might be considered politically incorrect in some locations (like the reservation for example)? not that such small things bothers me very much... but I do get you drift.

    I do have some in training... sadly it may be decades before they are ready for the heavy lifting. I like to start them very young here and bring them along slowly.
     
  14. tcchris

    tcchris New Member

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    Another question :
    My strong hive , as I said , seems to have no interest in building out another super .
    With the goldenrod about to bloom , what will they do ?
    The bottom super is about 1/3 full of honey , the rest is brood and pollen . The medium super is full of honey and capped except for 2 frames . Is there any danger that they will swarm or anything , if they fill it all up ?
     
  15. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    There is always that risk although by fall the likely hood gets less and less. hopefully as you move into fall the brood nest will be contracting (via the queen laying up less and less) with the hive hopefully will be backfilling this empty space with pollen and nectar. That gets the hive pretty well set for winter.

    In what position are the two uncapped frames?
     
  16. tcchris

    tcchris New Member

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    they are on each end of the medium super
     
  17. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    if you had worries of swarming you might want to move the uncapped frames to the center of the box. most likely the hive will then fill and cap these (if you have a flow) but being uncapped they could also provide a place for the queen to lay if necessary.

    as a general rule I look at capped and uncapped frames of honey quite differently in that in the uncapped state honeybees don't seem to have any hesitance to move the honey and use these for other purposes fairly straight off. in the capped state things changes simply because honeybees don't uncap unless they have a reason for doing so.

    ps.... there is an old school manipulation at one time fairly commonly used in the spring time to push a hive towards pulling foundation (which somewhat confirms my point above) this involves taking the honey super and with either a fork or capping scratcher raking the capping and place this directly on the bottom board. you then place the brood nest above the honey super and then a box of foundation above the brood nest. the hive not liking the idea of uncapped honey at the front door move the nectar upward forcing them to pull the foundation at the top of the stack. I am not certain I would recommend this in the fall when pulling foundation is always difficult.