Cleaning Supers

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I have had a pretty good early season, having just extracted my OSR. I have three hives with 3 / 4 supers on each. I am not sure as to how I can get these cleaned by the bees so I can remove them. I’ve tried searching and there is mention of using a crown board but there is no indication as to where I put it. On a stack of 3 supers that need cleaning up is the crown board placed above the brood box ? Above a super on top of the brood box ???
Normally I haven’t had too much to extract so I’ve just put the odd super back but this year my stacks are “monumental” and I am guessing it’s not a good idea to just to put them back on .. that’s a lot of boxes for the bees to manage ???
 

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I have had a pretty good early season, having just extracted my OSR. I have three hives with 3 / 4 supers on each. I am not sure as to how I can get these cleaned by the bees so I can remove them. I’ve tried searching and there is mention of using a crown board but there is no indication as to where I put it. On a stack of 3 supers that need cleaning up is the crown board placed above the brood box ? Above a super on top of the brood box ???
Normally I haven’t had too much to extract so I’ve just put the odd super back but this year my stacks are “monumental” and I am guessing it’s not a good idea to just to put them back on .. that’s a lot of boxes for the bees to manage ???
See this thread:


Put an empty shallow or two above the box with brood. Then clearer board. Then full supers. This gives them space to move down into.

If OSR then make haste!
 

JamezF 

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See this thread:
Possible "n"/"r" transposition there? I'm fairly sure the OP is asking about getting the bees to clean up supers after extraction rather than clearing them for removal.

From what I've read, some posters here don't bother with having the bees clean the supers and store them wet. I do (bother) because at the moment it makes storage far more convenient for me. I was taught to put the crown board on then the wet supers because the bees view the crown board as the limit of the hive and if they find honey outside it they'll move it back in and I've not found this method not to work. That's perhaps more relevant at the end of the season though, rather than after extracting after a spring flow. I'm not sure what's recommended in that situation because I've never had so many supers extracted early in the year. I might be tempted to put one super on top of the QX (assuming you don't already have a replacement there), then the crown board and then the remaining supers so they can start work filling the lower super once again, reorganising the cleaned supers to suit the conditions as necessary (moving them below the crown board or removing them altogether).

Obviously it does require that you have crown boards with holes in so the bees can actually get into the supers, which may not be the case if you have poly hives.

James
 

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Yes, no point this time of year but if you do want to clean them put an empty super over the crown board with a feeder hole reduced to a couple of bee spaces then put your super to be cleaned on top of that.
 

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how I can get these cleaned by the bees so I can remove them
I agree, James, there's a confused message here: if the supers have been extracted already they won't need to be removed from the bees.

If it's cleaning you're after, Ashley, don't bother, but stick them back on for the main flow. If the spring flow has ended where you are, do it quickly and early or late in the day to limit robbing. If there's a lull in nectar until blackberry opens, bees will clean the supers anyway.

The idea that bees will clean supers above a crownboard works when the colony contracts in early autumn. At any other time of year, or even late in the season during an ivy or balsam flow, bees will ignore the small hole in the crownboard and start filling them again.
 

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I agree, James, there's a confused message here: if the supers have been extracted already they won't need to be removed from the bees.

If it's cleaning you're after, Ashley, don't bother, but stick them back on for the main flow. If the spring flow has ended where you are, do it quickly and early or late in the day to limit robbing. If there's a lull in nectar until blackberry opens, bees will clean the supers anyway.

The idea that bees will clean supers above a crownboard works when the colony contracts in early autumn. At any other time of year, or even late in the season during an ivy or balsam flow, bees will ignore the small hole in the crownboard and start filling them again.
Well yes if nectar is still coming in there’s no point taking them off
 

Colinkemp 

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I have had a pretty good early season, having just extracted my OSR. I have three hives with 3 / 4 supers on each. I am not sure as to how I can get these cleaned by the bees so I can remove them. I’ve tried searching and there is mention of using a crown board but there is no indication as to where I put it. On a stack of 3 supers that need cleaning up is the crown board placed above the brood box ? Above a super on top of the brood box ???
Normally I haven’t had too much to extract so I’ve just put the odd super back but this year my stacks are “monumental” and I am guessing it’s not a good idea to just to put them back on .. that’s a lot of boxes for the bees to manage ???
I had a similar problem with some crystallised osr left after extraction. Put the super under the brood box for a couple of days, all cleaned out, then removed for reuse.
 
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I have a similar problem insofar that as a bi-product of Demaree-ing I have a lot of brood frames (DN) with stores in them even after extraction (crystalised OSR, I think). I tried putting them above the crown-board (but under the roof) in the hope that the bees would clean them, but they didn't. I guess it was because there is a flow on and they didn't need to. I'm concious that I could feed it all back to the bees in in the autumn but in the meantime I have a lot of sticky frames that are rather cluttering up my shed.

So, would the answer be to put an empty BB under the main BB (separated from the Q+ BB with a QE?) so that the bees take the excess stores up into the colony? Could I do that same with wet SN frames? How long would that take them, do you think?
 

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If I want partially filled, crystalline honey removed, I spray with water then put over a partially open crown board. Soon cleared. I do not like storing wet. Too messy and hate the smell
 

Jon.21 

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I’ve thought about the same situation. If I take our brood frames with uncapped stores does the nectar that’s not yet honey not go off / ferment ?
 

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