do I remove the super?

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by gloriousolive, Sep 13, 2009.

  1. gloriousolive

    gloriousolive New Member

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    I am in my first year of beekeeping and am a bit confused as to whether I should remove the super or leave it on.
    There are 8 frames of capped honey in it, should I just remove the queen excluder and leave the bees to it? Will the bees move up and use the honey? I have had advice from several sources but as it is all conflicting I am now baffled!
     
  2. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    the bees will move up and use the honey. I would remove the excluder.... the primary reason being that you do no want the winter cluster to move upward and leave the queen below the excluder to freeze.
     

  3. BjornBee

    BjornBee New Member

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    If you remove the super, will there be enough honey left for the bees? If yes, then take it. If no, remove the QE and let the bees have it.

    Many times, beekeeper (with late season harvesting) just look at the supers and take off the honey without really knowing what is left below. They fill from the top down and if these are new hives, did they just get a chance to fill the super and NOT backfill the brood chamber? That may be the case.

    Bottom line....Know exactly what you are leaving behind if your taking off honey.

    A good rule.....Always leave the honey the first year. Worry about honey next year. If you built up the hive from a starter hive and added supers late, you run the risk of them not having enough below. Nothing is worse than losing your hives the first year.
     
  4. Charles

    Charles New Member

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    Another vote here for leaving the super and removing the QE. Better safe than sorry, I would hate to see you lose the hive over a few frames of honey...

    And welcome to the board! :mrgreen:
     
  5. gloriousolive

    gloriousolive New Member

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    thank you all for your replies, I have left the super on and removed the QE, there is plenty of honey in both boxes to get throught the winter now.
     
  6. Hobie

    Hobie New Member

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    Good plan! They sometimes need more than you would think. I lost two hives last winter to starvation. Both had several frames of honey left, but we had a severe cold snap in February, and the bees could not get to the honey.

    (In one hive the bees were on one side, and the honey was on the other. In the other hive... I had done a late emergency combine, and it ended up with a super of honey above a super that had some empty comb in it. I had intended to move the full frames down, but the snow hit Nov. 5 last year and didn't let up until March.)