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  Monday, 09 February 2015
  2 Replies
  203 Visits
I will be installing my first hive this May with a purchased 5-frame nuc, and I was curious as to the cadence for expanding the hive to a second deep. I was planning on installing the nuc in a single deep (frames are just foundation and have no existing comb) with a top feeder while the colony gets going.

My question is: when should I add the second hive deep? I have heard that when installing package bees, once 7 of the 10 frames have been pulled, it is time to give them more room. With a nuc installation, 5 of those frames are already full to begin with. Would the benchmark for adding a new deep be when two additional (foundation) frames had been pulled (5+2=7), or another consideration? Also, at what point after 2nd deep addition should I begin supering? When 7 of the 10 upper deep frames have been pulled?

Any advice on this would be helpful. Thank you
7 years ago
When you add the second deep you might consider moving up a couple frames of brood to the center of the second box. Sometimes a nuc will grow its population so fast that they need extra room more quickly than a package. Adding a box of foundation on top doesn't always help as they don't always see overhead foundation as expansion room and they will swarm. Moving up the two frames of brood gets them up there and because they now have brood next to foundation, they draw that foundation into comb more quickly.
7 years ago
That's exactly the right way to do it.

In the spring - assuming it comes this year - you want to make sure they always have room to expand so as to avoid overcrowding.


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