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POPZ 

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I am in a quandary here. can anyone advise please. My one nuc is expanding nicely, plenty of sealed brood, larvae and eggs. 3 frames of foundation yet to draw out.

My question is should I go for more brood in a super ie leave off excluder with a view to building up a stronger colony for wintering or should I stick to single brood. Honey is not of importance at this stage.

And I have been told that feeding should stop at this stage - why? Surely they need help to draw comb?
 

jimbeekeeper 

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another one to consider is double brood. Unlike brood + half, it gives you more options to swap brood frames around i.e they are the same size.
 

POPZ 

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another one to consider is double brood. Unlike brood + half, it gives you more options to swap brood frames around i.e they are the same size.
Thanks Jim - but I unfortunately do not have another brood frame at the moment - still waiting for a flat pack to arrive - think it is coming by very slow donkey carrier!
 

Poly Hive 

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POPZ?

You have been advised to stop feeding lest sugar gets onto the super. As the honey is most likely for your own consumption it's in reality a bit academic.

The classic method of running hives in Scotland is one and a half and my experience was when I tried to run double brood the bees treated the upper chamber as a super, and damn heavy it was too. :)

You might find Bob Coustons book handy in your neck of the woods. As a member of the SBA as I am sure you are you have access to the Moir Library and I am reasonably sure they will lend by post for you.

http://www.beedata.com/data2/nutshell_heather_honey.html Just for information which popped up on a Google on Bob Couston.

PH
 

POPZ 

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POPZ?

You have been advised to stop feeding lest sugar gets onto the super. As the honey is most likely for your own consumption it's in reality a bit academic.
PH
I am not interested in honey production at this stage. I just want to build a strong colony and wish to know how to go about it. Feed or not to feed. 1 brood or one and a half?

I have read many books and find they tend to be slightly contradictory so wondered what the forum felt?
 

whizzwheels 

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I'm in a simular position in that my nuc is expanding nicely to fill the brood box and I'm wondering if i should add another brood box on top to build up a strong colony ready for next year.
Then in spring next year take the second brood box and start a second hive with it to double my number of bee hives.
Or should i just put a super on and collect some honey?
I'm not too bother about honey this year and would prefer to have a nice healthy colony ready to build up my bee stock next year
:confused:
 

Eyeman 

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'Most' queens start to reduce their rate of egg laying towards the middle of July. I wouldn't put a second brood or super on this year, just give them plenty of room above the queen excluder for stores.
 

Poly Hive 

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POPZ?

I did most of my beekeeping in Aberdeen/Kincardinshire and so am giving you Scottish advice and am taking into account your climate and location. Yes I have been on Mull several times.

With no disrespect to the forum they are mainly located in England and more than a few in the very balmy south of.

The brood and aa half is a well trodden route in Scotland for very good reasons. It suits the bee mainly and also allows them to have that much more in store for a long winter.

PH
 

admin 

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Very true PH.

I agree that beekeeping in the south does vary from beekeeping in the midlands and scottish islands.

I would expect to start feeding a couple of weeks after Popz does.
 

Poly Hive 

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Its a fact Admin.

I have actually seen the difference over a matter of 100yds. ;)

PH
 

gavin 

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I wouldn't advise a beginner to go with brood and a half as it leads to all sorts of difficulties. Either the bees will fit into a single box, or get them onto a double brood box and your queen raising will be easier. Most discussions I've seen on this particular topic end up with most folk saying don't use brood and a half!

I really think that your best policy is to stop feeding, put a super on and see if they bring home some heather honey. If they do, you can scrape it off and run it through a sieve, and you have your first crop. If nothing much happens, they will at least put heather honey in the brood box for overwintering.

That Weightman article posted yesterday has a map of the heather areas and suggested that there are only maybe three small areas on Mull where a heather crop is possible.

all the best

Gavin
 

POPZ 

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Hey Gavin - good to hear from you.

The article that Poly whotsit posted for me is great - a wee bit complex but lots of good stuff there.

I have decided to go for single brood plus excluder rightly or wrongly. The argument being that there will be plenty of time after the main flow later in the summer to remove excluder and build up brood. :)

But best news is my flatpack of GABLED - yes gabled national has arrived. Thornes says they look pretty in the garden!! I am a sucker for something different. Now ready for another nuc/swarm if only I could find a way of directing them my way?

Great weather here still - think Mull must have shifted several hundreds of miles south! Hope all well your side of the land of the living.:)
POPZ
 

Queen B 

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I agree with Gavin. I sometimes winter a strong colony on brood and a half, for both space and extra stores, but then clear the queen down to the brood box in early spring and just run single brood box with excluder and as many supers as they'll fill! Have experimented with brood and a half and double brood before now but haven't found either system to be better and, in some cases, it's more hassle. Yes, I know some folk say that any queen cells will be between the 2 boxes so just lifting and tilting the top one saves time, but my bees don't seem to work that way. Besides, these days we need to check all the brood frames a bit more thoroughly for pests and diseases, don't we?
 

POPZ 

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That Weightman article posted yesterday has a map of the heather areas and suggested that there are only maybe three small areas on Mull where a heather crop is possible.
all the best
Gavin
Gavin, looked at that map and i wonder where the info came from. I am supposedly in a non heather area! wonder what all that bell shaped stuff is and very ling like plants that stretch for miles behind me??

Queen Bee - thanks for your input, and by the looks of your join date - welcome to the forum. It seems like they are a crusty ol' group of misfits, but some useful gems of info there if you can understand their language!!:) I am a wee newbie and only just learning the real basics.
 

gavin 

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Crusty ol' misfits indeed! That was brave of you ...

Good luck with that ling stuff - but PolyHive did say that managed moors are best and he does have a lot of experience of them. I just take my bees to a managed moor and it works for me. I suppose that your ling is unmanaged? If so, it will be great to hear how they perform.

I'm sure that your Mull mentor can help with that one ...

Anyway, Queen B, welcome to the forum! Bear in mind that in the hive it is the workers who are really in control and the queen just does what she is told. Lay here, lay there, slim down, speed up, slow down, come fly with us ...

G.
 

Queen B 

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Anyway, Queen B, welcome to the forum! Bear in mind that in the hive it is the workers who are really in control and the queen just does what she is told. Lay here, lay there, slim down, speed up, slow down, come fly with us ...

G.
Shhhhhhhhhhh! She doesn't know that ... she might hear you and go on strike or something! Unless, of course, you mean me under my forum name, in which case I chose it because my queens are beautiful, sleek, hard-working .... :)
 

gavin 

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.... and I can imagine that everywhere you go everyone stops, turns around to face and indeed worship you, and tries to get a sniff of that gorgeous perfume you're wearing!

Just watch out if I come along though. If I'm carrying a bucket of whitewash and a mop, you'd best run and hide!

:laughing-smiley-004

G.
 

POPZ 

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Scrivens - managed moors on Mull???????? Unless of course you are talking about muirburns that turn into raging infernos consuming a few hundred acres of forestry at the same time?
No all is wild and pretty woolly here, but my bees will soon sort it out - they born and bred here as her majesty was as well. In fact was raining today and they still braved the elements between heavy showers - wonderful little critters.

Queen Bee - sleek, hard working, and beautiful - is that really you? Very welcome here at any time:)
 

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