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Uli Knapp

Partially Capped Frames

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I'd like to get the honey off for the winter but noticed (mid February) that there was still around 50% uncapped honey. Thought I'd give them another month, but my inspection (last weekend - 23rd March) showed very little change. I know that I should not expect the bees to follow my schedule, but can someone tell me whether to harvest or whether I should wait another few weeks. I'm in Auckland and the hives (3) are very busy, all with 2 supers.

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If you hold the frames horizontally and give them a shake you will see if any honey comes out.

If there's none or very little you can harvest as the honey has been ripened enough.

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Ho ULi- I have similar problem ..I had to take honey off and some frames are runny:( How long do I have before honey fermentates? or shall I put those frames back for bees to deal it with?

cheers

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I would take those frames which are mostly capped and leave the runny ones for the bees to deal with.

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Hi Maja, the other day I did harvest some uncapped honey. I kept that in the fridge for the past 3 months and it's still perfect. Could be that it would have been OK outside the fridge as well. I've invested in a refractometer (hope to test this weekend if it arrives.) That way I can be sure that I harvest honey instead of nectar. On the other hand I'll probably leave most of the significantly uncapped frames "for the bees to deal with" as suggested.

Harvest time this weekend. The neighbours are already queuing up. Last year we gave so much away that we had to buy in from the supermarket. This year we'll be sure to keep enough "family winter stocks".

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Another option is to do the shake test first to determine it is not nectar. Then extract the uncapped first.Then uncap the rest. Use the un-capped honey first. That is what I did.

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