NZBF: Not much foundation in new hive

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0
Auckland
Experience
Beginner
Hi, newbie here looking for some advice. We lost our first hive in autumn (suspect varoa, there was no AFB present). We introduced a NUC into the cleaned up hive on 24 Sept. Brood box has full depth plastic frames from last season that have been cleaned and waxed (using wax from last year's harvest). A 25% full 3/4 super (wax frames) from last season was put on top with a queen seperator. Inspecting today there was a lot of action in the super but not much in the brood box. We're pretty sure we saw the queen in the brood box. Most of the bees in the brood box are all along one side, There are only slight traces of new foundation being made on the brood frames. Is this normal?......and how long does it take for cells to be made and eggs to be laid? Thanks in advance.
 

yesbut

Staff member
11,897
7,003
Nelson
Experience
Hobbyist
Wax manufacture requires nectar. Cell building requires a nectar supply over and above the nectar bees need for feed. If there's not much nectar available, or not a strong force of field bees to bring nectar in, a colony will struggle to build comb. Without prepared cells the Q will not lay. If it was me, I'd be feeding them....
 

Josh

Gold
1,007
732
Christchurch
Experience
Hobbyist
Hi.

So you’ve added 5 nuc frames to make a 2 box hive. This is probably too much too fast for the current population. Take off the super and let the bees get properly established and feed them to help them along.

Also consider single frame size across all boxes. This makes things much simpler.

I feel ya pain, sounds very similar to my start in bee keeping, it does get better.
 
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Josh

Gold
1,007
732
Christchurch
Experience
Hobbyist
Also, unless your certain the nuc has been properly treated, you should consider a conventional synthetic varroa treatment too.

There are always lots of different factors that may contribute to a hive that’s struggling.
 
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