Viewer mail

Dario writes:

Dear Mr. Kirkobeeo,

First of all. Thank you for offering to take and answer questions regarding our lovely bee friends. I would really appreciate if you could help me with my concerns below:

I am a beginning bee keeper here in Los Angeles...we installed a hive in the Hollywood hills on May 14, 2010 and checked the hive on 6/29/10 and the bees were buzzing fine and there seemed to be no problems. The bottom frames were beginning to be filled with brood.

We checked the hive on 9/30/10 expecting to harvest honey but were surprised to see that none of the top frames had been worked on at all. The bottom frames were almost completely covered in brood and honey. While this seemed great for the future of the colony we were not sure if there was a problem because of the lack of honey production.

I wanted to know if moving a few frames from the bottom box to the top would stimulate more honey production?

—Dario P.

Kirk replies:

OK—everything seems fine to me. The common mistake new beekeepers make (and old beekeepers too) is managing the hive with the purpose to get Honey.....yes that's right to get honey. Your bees are on their first year. The first year do the following:

1- Get the bees in the box

2- See the queen is laying

3- The queen is laying in a good pattern.....not a Drone Layer

4- The bees get established and get through the August September Dearth.

5- See that they have Pollen and Honey to get to spring.

a- No reason to move a frame or two up because the bees are contracting not expanding this time of year

b- Look around do you see flowers like you do in the spring...No

c- Go to the blog click on Charles Martin Simon read his stuff

d -Join the backwardsbeekeepers club on yahoo

c- do whats best for the bees not what is best for the Human