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Harvesting Technique


Situation: Second year hive, hive bars all full, follower board in each end. I harvested the last three bars two weeks ago (even though it was 21% moisture) to give them some more room. Two weeks later they have already hung full combs on those last three bars and capped the honey so I needed to harvest more to give them room. Went in deeper, took three more bars, all capped 19.5%.

I see why the follower board now, when your hive gets full before they finally cap the honey (we’ve had a wet year), you need to be able to slip that end board out to get room to work.

My problem: when I went to put all the bars back, I wanted to make all the bars available to them, which puts that follower board in the last space again…and I had a wall full of bees on the end of the hive. Fortunately the last space was just a tad wider than I needed so I could go ahead and slip the follower board in and have just a bee space on the back side of it…and I assume those bees will evacuate the premises and go back on the hive side? Am I going to have a mess in that last small space on the back side of the follower board? If the bees had not been there I would have put a narrow board I have made to plug little holes there, but I couldn’t plug the hole with all those bees in there.