No honey in supers

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by rw02kr43, Sep 27, 2013.

  1. rw02kr43

    rw02kr43 New Member

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    About a month ago I found that both deeps are full. So I added supers. There are bees in the supers. But none have drawn out foundation or done anything other than walk through them. Should I just take them off? This would be the 2nd year we don't get anything at all from our hives.

    Jason
     
  2. blueblood

    blueblood New Member

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    Yeap, take them off. I took all of my supers off two weeks ago. I had been letting them finish 8 or frames when I removed them. The bees are managing spring bee operations now. The top deeps are filling up with honey and I am seeing bees with much more pollen now. Sorry to hear about no honey but if it is any consolation, honey production has been low for all here in Indiana and beyond. If if were earlier in September, I would have told ya to steal a couple deep capped honey frames so you could have a little supply for personal use. The bees have plenty of asters and golden rod around here to re-stock. It would come with much caution to take any deep frames now.
     

  3. rw02kr43

    rw02kr43 New Member

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    I hope they make it through the winter this year. If not, then I might have some hives for sale next year. I don't think I'm going to start all over again for no return.

    Jason
     
  4. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Take heart. If it was easy, everyone would do it. It takes special folks to do this in the first place, and there are times when the "return" is minimal. I like to factor in the "lifting of the spirit" factor as well as the honey. :wink:
     
  5. blueblood

    blueblood New Member

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    Hang in there Jason. This was just your second year and unfortunately, a bad year in general for bees. I have 14 hives and only pulled around 80 to 100 pounds this season. I should have had much more. However, only 3 of those hives were from last year. The remaining balance are all first year hives. I have a friend that pulls 700 plus pounds from just 5 hives over the season. His hives are all thoroughly established though.
     
  6. bamabww

    bamabww Active Member

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    Jason, don't give up. Honey production was great the first harvest in late May / early June but non existent for the late harvest in late August / early September. That seems to be the case across all our local bee club. Some years it just happens.
     
  7. Wolfer

    Wolfer New Member

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    My bees never drew a single frame in the supers this year. I built me a homemade extractor and midsummer took a few frames from the top deeps. When the bees filled them back up I took a couple more. I ended up taking 75 lbs and may take some more once I do my winter prep. This method allowed me to take four frames ( 6 quarts ) of pure Buckbrush honey which we believe is the best we've ever got. There are four more frames of it still in the hive that I'll probably take. I only had two hives that weren't new or didn't swarm.
    ​I only need about 40 lbs a year, the rest is scattered among neighbors, coworkers, family etc. Woody
     
  8. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    that is a pretty good system you have there Wolfer. most time for the beginner here in Texas I suggest they leave whatever honey a new hive makes in year one but I know full well the temptation of having just a bit can be a bit overwhelming for most folks so often times I modify my recommendation to 'take just a little' or 'take just a taste' in year 1.
     
  9. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    In my opinion RW you supered up to late. I would have had the foundation on as soon as they had the 2nd deep pulled and a little bit of honey stored. My guess is you missed the main flow. Bees will only pull comb when they need the space. I would remove the supers for the winter and wait until early spring. Another idea is if you had a queen excluder on with foundation above it. They are very reluctant to draw out comb in the super.:thumbsup:
     
  10. Eddy Honey

    Eddy Honey New Member

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    Agreed! You've got to be crazy with a bit of common sense to keep bees.
     
  11. DonMcJr

    DonMcJr New Member

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    My bees in 4 hives barely drew all the comb this year. I did manage a total of 90 lbs from 2 harvests but that's pretty bad compared to my 200 Lbs from 2 hives last year...Bad year for sure. Hang in there it will be worth it one of these years!
     
  12. rw02kr43

    rw02kr43 New Member

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    Well I too, the supers off. Now my one hive has a clump of bees in the front. Stacked about 5 bees deep. I've never seen anything like it. And it's raining today. So, is this a swarm or is something else going on? I would hope my bees had enough sense to go in out of the rain.

    ​Jason
     
  13. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

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    This has happened since you pulled the honey supers off I assume. lack of space in the hive for the # of bees to come in and cluster the bees while ripening honey will limit the density of bees in the hive as not to impend air flow. as it gets colder they will move inside as well the old foragers will be dying off. In a week or two's time they will all be back in the hive.