partial brood ok , when taking honey frames?

vmarcos68(8A)September 13, 2004

I have opted to remove frames of sealed honey from the 2nd box of my colonies since this is the first year and they didnt get the 3rd one completed. I will take the 2nd chamber and leave the top one for overwintering.

One frame had a round circle of brood in the center on one side.

A couple of questions/concerns:

-Is this frame extractable since I plan to manually uncap?

Would the spinning frame cause injury to those larvae?

I think I would like to swap out a more empty frame soon, with possibly no wax foundation present.

-Would this then mostly extracted frame be ok during overwintering?

-Any opinions on the value of this ~15% frame of brood to the colony?

I suspect those larva/bees would start chewing their way out of the capped brood cells, since I havent collected all of the sealed honey yet to extract. This may provide additional concern:), ouch!.

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Brood taken out of the hive almost always dies. And you will get some in the honey. Maybe your label could say Brood'N'Honey? Come on, don't be so greedy. This is their first year and you want to leave them with only a few frames? I guess in zone 8 you are much luckier than we are, because leaving less than a deep super is asking for trouble around here. Maybe somebody from your zone can answer and say that that is plenty of stores for them. You should plan on feeding them for a long time, but then again, I never had bees in zone 8.

Also, if there is only brood in the middle of the frame in the second super after a whole summer, that is not a very strong hive. A decent queen would have filled both supers at least once during the spring/summer. You may have more problems than a few brood in a frame of honey. I hope somebody else chimes in on this one.

    Bookmark   September 13, 2004 at 10:52PM
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Well there was only two frames in that second super that had any brood, both with the same amount, I decided to leave the other one behind:). Having start with a four frame nuc in spring I was impressed with their aggressive start.

Does an excess of honey in the 2nd brood chamber necessarily indicate a weak hive? Ive seen this in my other two year old colony as well.

I have a fall checklist from our area that states sufficient winter stores are 5 frames(40 lbs)of honey and 2-3 frames of pollen. I think between the 2 or 3 frames of capped and uncapped honey that I moved down and any in the bottom super there should easily be 5. I find these bees a little defensive and try to keep their handling minimal:).

In regards to pollen stores, is it easy to mistake pollen for brood? Since these cells were bullet shaped Im thinking pollen cells would be flatter, correct?

Also I plan to use a frame feeder in the top supers and check on it ever 1 or 2 weeks through the winter, also pollen patties.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2004 at 12:49PM
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An excess of honey anywhere never is an indication of a weak hive, but they will store the honey as close to the center of activity as possible. If they choose to put honey in the middle of the second super, it indicates no need for the space for brood, and a hive that has gone through the summer only needing one deep for brood is not a strong hive.

If a queen has not moved up into the second deep super and laid more than a few eggs, then one can assume that she has filled the bottom one no more than one and a half times.

I am assuming 10 frame deeps here. She starts in the middle of the bottom one (presumably, either from introduction or after bottom supering), lays about 8 frames of brood, then she should move up. These 8 frames should be filled in 6-8 wks. of a good spring. Around here, this means early June at the latest. So she has had most of June and all of July to work (she sort of lays off laying in Aug) and she didn't put any whole frame of brood into the second super? That is very different from what I was used to. I guess if all they need is 40 lbs then they'll make it, can't argue with what I don't know.

Pollen is very different from brood. Pollen cells are not usually capped and can be from almost white, to frequently, orange, yellow or brown. Not much chance to mistake one for the other.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2004 at 6:14PM
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Next time you have brood on a frame you want to extract, place a queen excluder beneath the box the frame is in (make sure the queen is not in that box or in other boxes above this box!), wait until all brood have hatched, then place a bee escape board beneath this box and wait 24 hours for all the bees to have exited that box.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2005 at 11:23PM
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