When it’s time to reap the rewards of your work as a beekeeper, make harvesting supers with frames full of delicious, golden honey a simple and easy process with these tips from Dadant & Sons.
As always, it’s a good idea to have all of your tools and materials ready and close at hand before you begin. To start harvesting supers, make sure you have all of the following items:
Tools and Materials
- A fume pad such as our Fume Pad 8-Frame M00683, or the Fume Board w/ Black Top M60070 for 10-frame supers.
- Honey-B-Gone M00136
- Hive Tool
- Bee Brush
- Bee Smoker
Procedure for Harvesting Supers
Start by adding a small amount of Honey-B-Gone onto the underside of the fume pad. This natural oil product acts as a repellent to gently but effectively drive the honeybees off of the frames you want to harvest. Next, remove the telescoping cover and inner cover from your hive. Our bees were relatively relaxed on the day this video was shot, but if your bees are agitated you may need to light your smoker and use a few puffs to calm them down before proceeding with harvesting your supers.
Place the fume pad on top of the super with the black or metal side up so the sun warms and evaporates the Honey-B-Gone. After waiting ten to fifteen minutes, most of the bees will have left the frames. Using your hive tool, slowly and carefully remove the super from the rest of the hive once you see it is mostly clear of bees. For any remaining honeybees, use your bee brush to gently remove them.
Dadant & Sons Pro Tip: As shown in the video, after removing your full supers, replace them with supers containing frames from which you have previously extracted the honey. The bees will clean any remaining honey and store it for use in the winter months, and you’ll have nicely cleaned frames that are easier to store neatly. To encourage the honeybees to clean these frames rather than refilling them, place an inner cover between the hive and the previously extracted super.
Finally, replace the telescoping cover over the hive and get ready to uncap and extract the honey your bees have made!
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