Preparing Supers for the Heather

Updated: Jul 21, 2019

For a change, this year I've decided to try Sections on one of the colonies. They did apparently go out of fashion but are once again making a comeback so I thought we'd give it a go and see how the bees get on with the English Section boxes. These are fiddly things to set up and even then, they won't fit into a normal National super - yes, you have to buy a special one for this! Great :(

So the first job is to get 32 of these boxes assembled and fit the small sheet of foundation into each one. These Section boxes are about 4" square and the bees are supposed to fill both sides with honey. The complete unit is sold to the consumer in a nice fancy outer packing.

An assembled Section box with premium unwired foundation fitted

Having assembled the Section boxes, it's time to assemble the rack (Super) that holds them. This just looks like a deep eke with lats along the bottom to support the Section boxes.

The Section Rack that holds the Section boxes

With the Rack assembled, it's just a simple matter of adding the Section boxes. Each row of boxes is separated from the next row by a white plastic divider. The purpose of this divider is to prevent the bees from extending the comb into the next Section box.

The rack will hold 8 rows of 4 Sections. Two rows are shown below ...

Section boxes in the Section Rack

Now that was a lot of work for just one super!

For my second hive, I decided to use unwired thin foundation. That was much easier and quicker to put together!

Assembling SN1 frames of unwired foundation

And before you ask - the bottle of Corona is an important part of this process! Less that an hour and job done!

The finished super of unwired foundation

Both of these boxes are now ready for adding to the hives we've selected for going to the heather so that the bees can get acclimatised to them and start drawing out comb on the foundation.

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