The honey bee colony is a teardrop shaped cluster of bees. Each frame is a 2 sided slice though the cluster. What you should see is that position in the nest in one axis. On the out side is a hollow sphere of honey The bottom is usually open and sides a filed with honey, The top also filled with honey. In the wild the bees move down to provide space for honey. This keeps all the honey about equal distance from the center of the brood nest. Inside that will be a layer of pollen The core of the chamber is the cells that brood is raised in.
Keep this in mind as we open the hive and examine each frame.
First set up your station.
You want to work each hive from the long side. For packs are great for this. Pace a support box down to one side of the entrance of the hive. You will be sitting on a box working it so make it comfortable. Place a top or inner cover down on the box I casually use the lid here. Place the support box ling side to you, Lid opposite. Slit the hive and place on the lid long side to you
Splitting the box separates the two or more parts. Each part quiet while working the others. You will also isolate the queen in one of the boxes. Making it easy to find her if needed.
As you do this note the size of the bee cluster. That will immediately show you the size of the nest. remember your are looking a horizontal cut through the nest. Record the number of frames into your log and mentally note the diameter of each slice or top. You can track it if you like. The distance between bees will vary with temperature in the hive and the number of bees.
Now it's time to look at each frame and record what we see.
Start on ether side of your box. Just do it the same each time. Take the side with the least options of killing the queen. 2nd from the out side useualy is eaest. Starting on the fare side from where you are working. As you work though the hive the bees you put back have a time to calm The frame moved across the hive for examination disturbs less bees.
The first frame is the honey stores. The second pollen 3 to 8 brood and 9 pollen 10 honey
Video to place here.
Last Update July 23, 2017