How many boxes do you need? Proportion....

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Regrettably, ;) even after finding one, wintering hive empty of bees, it's looking promising that I will have nine healthy colonies in the Spring. After accounting for the additional boxes I will use for increasing brood-space, I will barely have enough boxes to give them two honey-boxes each. That's before I even think about the extra boxes that I'll need when I come to Demaree or other swarm-prevention methods.

Longer-term I want to level off at around five colonies; the boxes I have would be well matched to that. I'm wondering if people have any idea of the approximate factor....number of colonies/number of boxes they own. In my case it's 9:33.
 
What boxes? How do you run your colonies? On a brood/super regime I would say two broods and three supers per colony as a minimum. That would have left me seriously short of boxes last year though, even with extract and return.
 
What boxes? How do you run your colonies? On a brood/super regime I would say two broods and three supers per colony as a minimum. That would have left me seriously short of boxes last year though, even with extract and return.

I'm happy to run a mixture of box depths and use either size as honey supers or brood. But as brood, I'm expecting to use, on average, one deep and one shallow per colony.
So, in your situation I would need at least another twelve boxes. That's kind of what I thought, and a worrying prospect.
 
looking promising that I will have nine healthy colonies in the Spring
Early days. Wait until Spring has really sprung and survivors confirmed. If you don't want to invest in more boxes, consider improving stock at that stage by culling the weakest performers and uniting to get a good spring honey crop.

Steve's two broods will work far better than your brood & half and release that half for honey.
 
Longer-term I want to level off at around five colonies; the boxes I have would be well matched to that. I'm wondering if people have any idea of the approximate factor....number of colonies/number of boxes they own
I run single brood and Demarree swarm avoidance. I don't demarree all the colonies every season so I'd aim for 50% additional deep boxes and at least three shallows for each colony, always having a few in reserve for any additional colonies you end up with during the season.
 
The nest of a population in the beak can occupy 20" to 25" in height. Part of that nest will contain harvest honey and the rest will be arranged in supers.
Now keep in mind that a national bs super contains a little less than 20 kilos of honey if it were completely full, but the bees need more space because they fill the cells as the nectar content loses water.
Now proceed to do the calculations.
Average kilos of harvest per hive = C
Winter Food = I
The number of lifts will be = max (C,I)/20.
The nest configuration arose from the modules to use
-4 supers bs.
-3 bodies of standard depth.
-2 bodies of 14"x12".
 
I run single brood and Demarree swarm avoidance. I don't demarree all the colonies every season so I'd aim for 50% additional deep boxes and at least three shallows for each colony, always having a few in reserve for any additional colonies you end up with during the season.
Thanks.. makes sense.
 
Early days. Wait until Spring has really sprung and survivors confirmed. If you don't want to invest in more boxes, consider improving stock at that stage by culling the weakest performers and uniting to get a good spring honey crop.

Steve's two broods will work far better than your brood & half and release that half for honey.
 
I'll keep my fingers crossed then......maybe the problem won't ever happen. ;) I like brood and a half at a maximum; for me it's more appropriate to the sort of bees and the climate we have. I don't manipulate to maximise, so interchanging frames isn't an advantage that I miss.
Culling and combining....now that's an idea..thanks.
 
As others said, I probably have 2 BB per colony, 3-4 super per colony and I extract and return. I run mostly single brood and demaree when needed.
I keep a lot of spare nucs as I will nuc the queen if I find swarm prep rather than splitting using another hive, although sometimes I will also do vertical splits (saves on roof and floors).
what I have lots of, are brood frames, drawn and foundation. I usually have more than what I can fit in my BBs.
 
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