OBKA Tutor’s Blog #3 – A SUPER time of year
In light of the present warm spell and above average seasonal temperature on occasions, the spring flowers are out and a lot more nectar is available to be collected. The Queen will be stimulated by the extra feeding she is receiving and in turn will lay more eggs. Remember that a large healthy colony going into winter will be stronger in the spring and when the nectar flow starts will be in a prime position to expand quickly.
On looking through my hives in the out Apiary (keeping to social distancing guidelines, which is not usually a problem once the roof is off and the bees are out) one colony was further ahead of the rest with 8 frames of nearly full out brood. The remaining frames were full of Pollen and Honey giving the Queen nowhere to lay until more capped brood hatches. I removed a couple of frames of stores and replaced with some drawn-out frames, Giving the queen more space to lay, and the super above will ensure that the bees still have enough stores if the weather changes. The removed frames will go into store ready to put into a Nuc in a few weeks time.
All of my hives now have at least one super on, as the brood boxes frames are all drawn out and I don’t need the bees kept in the brood box to draw out more.
If you are keeping bees away from home you can always put a couple of extra supers on above the crown board (with the porter bee escape holes open). The bees will not use this extra space unless it’s needed and this is just in case you are unable to get to see them. Remember a full size colony can fill a super in a matter of days on a strong nectar flow.