Reluctant to draw

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Joined
May 26, 2021
Messages
222
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61
Location
Salisbury
Hive Type
WBC
Number of Hives
5
I've been running three colonies on Demarees. It seems to be working insofar as I've maintained most of the brood in the Upper Brood Box (UBB) leaving lots of space to lay in the LBB. So far I've seen no swarm cells in the LBB, just Supercedure cells and once some EQCs in the UBB.

What I'm surprised about, however, is that the bees seem slow/reluctant to draw out foundation in the LBB. The queen in a couple of them seems happy to lay in just three or four part-stores frames whilst the other frames remain as undrawn foundation. The UBBs are now full of emerging brood (10 frames or so).

Should I be concerned? Is there anything that I should do?
 
And I'm moving frames up to the UBB as soon as I see eggs in them. I'm not waiting for them to be capped. Is that correct
Unless you want to harvest the QCs for some purpose, no - I move frames up to the top box when all the brood has been sealed, it saves hunting for QCs the week after (or having them rear a second queen in the top brood)
 
I think that the reason I've been moving the frames early is that last year (my first full year) I was definitely slow off the mark and/or insufficiently scrupulous about moving frames, resulting in the Demareed colonies still attempting to swarm. This year (so far) it's been more successful in that regard, but it's resulted in much more and much younger brood in the UBB. I'm still surprised that the bees in the LBB aren't drawing up more frames - but I guess they know what they are doing.
 
I've been running three colonies on Demarees. It seems to be working insofar as I've maintained most of the brood in the Upper Brood Box (UBB) leaving lots of space to lay in the LBB. So far I've seen no swarm cells in the LBB, just Supercedure cells and once some EQCs in the UBB.

What I'm surprised about, however, is that the bees seem slow/reluctant to draw out foundation in the LBB. The queen in a couple of them seems happy to lay in just three or four part-stores frames whilst the other frames remain as undrawn foundation. The UBBs are now full of emerging brood (10 frames or so).

Should I be concerned? Is there anything that I should do?
JBM is always v hot on this and his advice above is my experience too

i have also noticed what you describe in some but not all colonies i have demareed in this fashion....some accelerate v fast and lay up (and draw) the bottom box exceptionally fast and others remain on 3-4 frames as you are describing and i reckon on at least 3 reasons for difference....queen and pace of laying (JBM reckons on a strong 1 -2 year old queen i think), flow...they will draw much slower or not at all depending on flow, sometimes age of foundation (they don't like old gnarled sheets)
 

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