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The Flow Hive for Honey Bees 2nd Honey Harvest Review and Testing

The Flow Hive for Honey Bees 2nd Honey Harvest Review and Testing


ok this is it so this is my follow-up video after the last honey extraction that it did back in September and we’re now in the month of october and this is the second extraction so I want to talk about some lessons learned and some things to look forward to in future extractions with your flow frames after you’ve been through a cycle the first time that this is a look back these bees are cleaning out cells that have been extracted you see there’s problems that orange stuff down between the two flow frames to the right of the screen and you can see that the bees were inside there looking out the cells and cleaning them and getting them ready in this particular sequence i’m showing you through one of the side panels of a flow frame and these are flow hive supers you can see that the wax has all been drawn out something interesting happened in subsequent honey extraction processes with the flow frames and that’s what I’m going to share with you in this video the bees are working gangbusters notice that all the honey is a very light yellow color now the source for the honey has changed from goldenrod to primarily asters there’s several varieties of asters and there’s white clover and there’s alfalfa so these are the primary nectar sources now in my part of the country and of course we’re in October these flow frames are not ready to go but I’m just showing you i have several flow hives and flow supers and this way I’m able to make comparisons so the bees are still filling this one what I wanted to do is take you back to the same flow hive that I used before in my previous video when i showed the honey extraction is just a sequence i decided to share some close-ups of the bees behavior on the landing boards it’s all the same we have guard beads to see the drones with the oversized eyes there you see that cheeto pops of pollen that are coming in on the hind legs of the field peas and we just have a lot of activity going on the nectar flow is still going strong we are in October but the weather is warm and i want to show you this behavior because we’re going to make a comparison to use before and after an extraction from this particular honey everything is busy you notice whenever i do anything with my honey bees i’m going to take a top off or if i’m going to be inspecting hives i do this in the early afternoon hopefully and clear sunny days and that way most of the worker fees are out in the field foraging and collecting these sources for this honeybee colony and you’ll see that some of the workers are coming in from the field not only have any pouches nothing but pollen tax on their legs but they also have pollen all over their bodies this is a prime time for them to bring in pollen resources that will be used later to raise babies now each of my honeybee hives i have the lower entry board standard landing board and i also have an upper entrance like this and you’ll find out that a lot of the field workers coming through this upper opening even though it’s not ideal they’re all jamming in and it’s a big competition for bees going out and going in there going straight to the supers and straight to the upper portions of the colony without having to track through the brood frames which are down below generally on the first brief box is where most of the building activities happen and that’s where the Queen spends most of her day so the field bees are tracking up the living room with their dirty feet now I just give you a quick shot of my little weather station here at 74 degrees it’s sunny and sixty-three percent humidity and it is October fourth of $MONTH 2016 so what’s remarkable about this colony if you watch my previous video you saw me draw all the honey off we drained seven flow frames and hollows frames have been refilled again and recap with honey and it’s only October fourth so this colony is extremely strong and i’m showing you before we get into it the landing board the behaviour normal if you watch my previous video after we extracted seven frames honey drip down inside the colony inside the brood frames and down to the bottom board and the bees actually evacuated the hive so they could dry out and there were about 24 hours cleaning up the hive on the inside before all those beads went back in so this time according to the flow people if I extract from the same frames again so the second and subsequent extraction cycles that to do with the flow frames should result in less honey dripping down inside so that’s what we’re going to find out today so here again i’ve set up my little bench and I’m pulling an actual gallon-sized jug because if you recall in the previous video I got about a quart and a half from each flow frame but looking at the flow frames now I noticed that not only did they recap after filling the flow frames again but they extended the cells a little longer so I’m expecting to get actually more honey out of each frame on this second cycle and if what the flow people told me is true during this cycle there should be little to no honey draining down inside and therefore the bees should not be evacuating to the front of the house began as they did before so let’s find out and i’m showing of course the whole this portion of the apiary has seven colonies in it and all the bees are very active people are always concerned down to be is coming to the back well not really this guy is full of bees flying here right now and once again the only thing that harasses me behind the Beehive when i’m working with the flow frames are those pesky Yellowjackets little loss that show up and they’re constantly on the hunt now these three frames are the ones i’m going to extract from they are the exact same frames that extracted from in September so the recovery cycle was very fast when the bees aren’t having to work up and seal the flow frame mechanism as they did for the initial training cycle so we’re opening up the bass plugs again and you can see the weep holes are established the two left sides you can actually see through and you can even see worker bees already trying to stick their tongues out i also want you to look in and see that there is debris inside the flow frames that is ground up pieces of propolis and little bits of wax that is going to come out with the honey that we drain this time and this is just a close appreciate a little worker bee they’re sticking her tongue out to see what’s going on now that we pulled those plugs but you can see the particles in there they are going to come out with the wrong honey and of course this one is sealed but when we put in the extraction drain tube the little tongue at the bottom of it is going to penetrate this wax and it’s going to make it so that any access honey left can drain off some people talk about well you put these flow frames in and there’s plastic how did the bees communicate harmonically we know that bees vibrate when they get on honeycomb and that they communicate in the darkness of the hive through vibration and so there’s a resonance it sets up in honeycomb now the thing is honey comb in the Super’s where the honey is stored honey is sound dampening so there isn’t going to be any waggle dancing going on up in the flow super where whether it’s plastic or whether its natural honey come they don’t go up to where the honey is stored into a waggle dance on the surface there most of the waggle dancing and the communication through vibration occurs down in the brood frames so Flo supers don’t necessarily impede that honey attenuate sound and isn’t a place where doing residents communication anyway I really enjoy looking inside and seeing the honey drip down i know we see it all the time but that doesn’t make it any less cool another thing I’m noticing is that the honey this time looks much more viscous than it did in my drawer off back in September you may recall that we use the refractometer and read about 17 and-a-half percent water this looks like it’s going to have a much lower moisture content than the previous study that we extracted another thing that we notice we’re looking at this all the frames of the same color so we don’t have kind of the unique individual honey per frame that we saw previously so combining two frames into 1 1 gallon container is not going to ruin the distinctive flavor and aspects of that honey frame by frame and also notice this time I’m activating half of the flow frame at a time instead of opening the whole thing out we’re going to see how much are you getting this gallon jar it’s a glass jar that it just got on amazon so there it goes you might be tired of watching honey come out of a flow hive and out of a beehive I never get tired of seeing it it’s amazing and what is absolutely extraordinary is that the bees in this colony restored that honey so fast and remember we’re pulling the exact same frames that we did just a few weeks ago because we want of course test out whether or not we get a repeated result with the behavior and with the leaking down into the colony as we did previously so that again i’m showing you the front of the colony and the back at the same time I don’t want to shame anyone I you know I go to my bees and i attended my bees without you know the full protective gear that a lot of people want to wear don’t let someone make you feel bad if you’re more comfortable wearing a full beekeeper suit and leather gloves and if you want to wear the veil do that that’s completely a personal preference if you feel safe for being around your bees and you want to work with your hives and you want to wear all the protective gear that’s that’s made and available go ahead and do it don’t let anyone shame you into going out there in just a tshirt I prefer to do it that way just because it’s comfortable and have been around these for many years so it doesn’t bother me i can read the beads and I know when they’re getting a little heated up in a little defensive and I certainly understand when it’s time to walk away and i’m not against putting on a veil or some protective gear if I start picking up some aggressive guard bees there i know people don’t like it when you say they’re aggressive so we will say defensive guard piece here’s the honey coming out it is super light it’s fantastic and this from your clover and asked honey some people say that you know asters will granulate or solidify fairly fast that’s going to be a problem if that happens inside your flow frames now you may ask why am I taking out money again are not taking where the resources that these bees are going to need to get through winner if you recall in the previous video I said I like to leave about a hundred pounds of honey on a colony to get them through a winner that is an insurance policy that they will have resources to get them through a long cold snowy winter when they can’t get out and they can’t get the resources that they need that is overkill for most of the colonies in my area some of the colonies i have are not that large so they make it through the winter with 25 pounds of honey I’ve had swarms that I’ve collected at the end of the year what I’m showing you right now is I use bamboo kebab sticks and I use them like chopsticks if i get a yellow jacket in my honey and i did today i use those to pull the little yellow jacket wasp out of the honey and here we’re just showing they’re draining is a little be down on the right hand side here that is trying to get in early and start doing maintenance there they really can’t fully access the cells while they’re in there open position so as soon as we put them back in the closed position the bees will go right into uncapping and doing maintenance again so now here’s the thing to you can’t start a flow frame and then get let’s say a couple cups of honey out of it and then close it off and retain and restore the system to where it will hold the remaining honey in that frame you need to be prepared to remove all the honey from that frame at once because even after you activate and clothes and restore the frames to the original position it does not stop the flow of honey because you’ve disrupted all of the work that the bees have done to seal those frames before they’re activated so once you open the frames you break those seals and the honey is going to continually pour out whether you close that are God and you definitely want to leave the drain tubes in there until all the honey has strained out this is unbelievable I expected you know a quart and a half per frame and here i’m getting a full gallon so that’s a lot of honey from just two frames in a flow super and it’s it’s heavier honey because it is presenting with kind of a lower moisture content switch running slower it’s thicker and it’s heavier and there’s more of it and the reason there’s more of it is because there’s the second time then i’m showing you the front because on my previous honey extraction with this same colony by this time the bees were already rolling out of the hive with honey drizzled all over from they had been gorging on honey so even the ground in front of the hive was covered with bees that couldn’t fly because they had all gorged on honey so I’m showing you hide number seven and hive number six for comparison so that you can see that this cycle what the flow people told me to expect was absolutely right the second time around extracting from the same frames resulted in almost no honey leaking inside the colony so the bees had virtually nothing to deal with as far as clean up inside so i didn’t have to worry although we’re in perfect weather conditions again it’s only going to be in the 50s overnight so if the bees had moved down and clicked on the front of the hive as they did before now they’re they’re not in jeopardy but I’m seeing through this cycle that the bees really did fix the flow frames and seal up their exterior to the point where it no longer leaks through down into the hive and I did till the entire high-back three degrees not the full five but I did tell the back three degrees for this extraction and look now that the frames are restored to their closed position the bees are immediately going back in and if you look you can see it’s hard to catch it because they’re down on the right is it be running away with a wax cap so they’re pulling the caps right away they’re hauling them away eventually workers will fly out of the hive with them and dispose of them they don’t reuse cap wax but they are cleaning the frames and getting the cells ready again to receive more honey a full gallon I have to tell you that I’m just amazed by the amount of money that came out of two frames and when it starts dripping like this i think you consider that you could restore those frames and put them in the closed position take the tubes out and put the plugs in and now i have a single-frame and I have a half gallon glass container there to collect it and we’ll see if this one is the same as the other two if it’s the same then this half gallon should fill all the way to the very top from a single frame and it looks like it’s getting there this is all real time course they do cutaways they don’t want you to have to watch every step of the way and you see the particles that are coming through there is some narration of the honey and their tiny particles this is a little yellow jacket that i pulled out of the honey and of course the bees are going to clean them up even though this is one of their archenemies and believe it or not this yellow Jack can actually flew away later I thought it was dead from suffocation by having honeysuckle over here we go can’t believe it a half gallon jar one frame and it filled it all the way up that’s a lot of honey and it’s more than I gathered in the first time around so i have to tell you I’m absolutely impressed i’m taking the shot just because it looks cool i like the way the sunlight is coming through these jars of honey the honey is actually the same color in both jars but the one on the left was just in the shade this is it what i want you to see is this is my entire extraction kit i’m not into harvest honey I came out and set up a board tilted the hive bag have my little chopsticks there to collect any angry you know yellow jackets are getting in my honey i have the extension tube to drain it off the you know needlenose pliers to open it and that’s as simple as it gets for extracting honey from a beehive you open the back see that it’s capped see that the honey is ready get your charge ready and extract one or two frames you do not have to pull friends from the whole hive and again we’re looking at the front of the colony no change in behavior remember these are asters and the bees are working asters and their work in the Alpha and they’re working the clover that’s why the honey is so light this time of year and there’s plenty left for them so they are still going to recover even though this is surplus honey this is not the honey that they needed to survive of course we have to take it all back to the kitchen table we’re going to get the refractometer and i’m going to put honey on it and we’re going to see look how viscous this is I’m thinking that this is going to be really good the less water you have in your honey of course the better but this is really thick it’s really good and there you have it it’s just a little over fifteen percent water that is excellent for honey if you recall in the previous video is right at 17.5 percent this is much better honey we got more of it it’s late season honey and it’s consistent that’s fantastic they have to tell you that I’m very very happy with the way the flow frames and the flow hive system is working out lots of resources the bees are going to go right back out there and they’re going to still collect the plenty of honey and nectar I can’t say anything bad right now it worked out fantastic and I want to thank you for watching my videos and thank you for learning I wish you all happy beekeeping

  • I honestly love the way you present your videos, and the different shots and angles you use to take the videos. A M A Z I N G 🙂
    I have FLOW hive, they just arrive about a week a go, Question, If i have a lower hive with 10 frame of bees, can i put the upper super with 7 frames? and when will they be ready to be extracted of honey?
    Sorry, you might think silly Q's, but i need an answer please 🙂

  • I appreciate your willingness to be open minded and try the flow supers. Most veteran beekeepers will not even consider them.

  • Superlative. No joke. The best video i've seen regarding this subject. You're concise, clear, and economical in your explanations. Have you been experiencing the same results in subsequent years? I'm curious about the longevity of this system. I think I'll seriously consider using it, if the integrity of the combs hasn't been compromised due to the action of operating the cells open and closed.

  • Every time you wonder if there's too many still shots of honey dripping out of anything, just know that many non bee keepers come to watch exactly for those moments 🙂

  • Wow, beautiful flow of honey, I always wondered how they collect the end product, and if the big commercial factories are mix it with sugar or something to get more quantity.
    I’m not a bee keeper, but I’m impressed with your respectful and patient way you educate us.
    Thank you.

  • The part I found most satisfying is the flow and getting over a gallon of honey. I love honey but terrified of bees, especially with the risk of killer bees.

  • Shot at 19:39 – two ancestral pollinating cousins eating honey together. Really nice shot. Great video, fantastic commentary.

  • Thank you so much. I've been so stressed out and your video has left me completely soothed and relaxed.
    May you live happily and prosper. :]

  • I love bees. They're really cute and honestly very friendly. 😌 if you are nice to them, they will be nice to you.

  • I really like how your super calm. I want to get into beekeeping I think it would be a nice therapeutic calming type of hobby. Looking at that honey dripping out makes me want to stick my finger in there and get a dollop of it!

  • So I guess my question about The flow hive is does it maintain its user-friendly function after the 10th or 20th extraction? does it really hold up after the first couple uses?

  • I know you said that you just emptied it a couple weeks ago. (Which is amazing btw)
    But how long did you have to wait for this hive to be established before extracting the honey?
    Between buying the hive to- extracting honey

  • Me, too. Never get tired of honey-coming-out. I hope the sequence of youtube stream is set. So, I won't ask the question that was answered the other… >_<

  • Weather station, where can I buy it? So cool everything you show. Really cool ~ just want to follow. Very intoxicating temptation ~ ^_^

  • I'm ur newest subscriber, I just subscribed. U tube brought me to this video. After watching this video, ur video is very informative, I'm thinking about getting a flow hive. How much r flow hives? Does it come assembled? If not, r the directions to assemble easy to follow? What tools to do u need for assembly? Do u need anything extra that doesn't come with the flow hive? Instructional videos like this will get ppl to become novice beekeepers, & with time & experience they'll become veteran beekeepers. Everyone starts as a novice. What gets people started r instructional videos like these. U'll have a whole new generation of beekeepers.

  • Is this one of the rare products on this earth "of any kind, for any job" that actually works, and works well? It seems every company is out to screw you over with lies, and here we see a product doing exactly what it's been advertised to do…I'm shocked!

  • I have a question for you! When you take honey from the bees do you have to leave a certain percentage so they have food to survive winter? Or how does that work?

  • To the flowhive snobs – we take delicious honey, wax, pollen, royal jelly from bees by basically ruining their homes/foodstores. I think worker bees deserve a higher standard of living, like flowhive! A happy bee is a more productive bee.

  • question, how do the bees know that the comb became empty? wasn't that one of the big arguments when flow hive came out?

  • 153 yellow jackets disliked this video.
    Seriously Awesome video. I'm about to purchase one of these.

  • I am agree with all the positive reviews for this video, my main concern however is the plastic #7 that is used for the frames – that is definitely not a food grade plastic. this plastic is so toxic that some states would not even recycle it. The manufacturer should switch to plastic #1 or another food grade plastic

  • Have you ever heard that you sound just like Michael Pollan? Same soothing soft voice. Funny pun with his last name too. 😁 The effort you put into your videos shows, cheers!

  • I’m not thinking of beekeeping but this was really informational and soothing and calm. So easy sub from me 🙂

  • You look nothing like you sound. You sound like a late 20's-30 year old man. You look like "The worlds most interesting man" from those beer commercials lol

  • I Never get tired of watching these busy bee's at work and that honey with such great viscosity looks AMAZING 👏👏 thank you so much for this video.

  • Love this video. That huuuge jar.. First empty.. Then FULL.. Wow.. I love nature. Its amazing 😀 And nice voice over. Good speaking voice 🙂

  • I live in Las Vegas, NV. There isn't a lot of pollen in my area of town. How could I support a modest hive without sufficient pollen?

  • Did you do something wrong the first time that caused the honey to drip to the hive, or is that just normal for the design?

  • If anyone still responds to these videos, can you tell me how many harvests you get on average each month, what months you do not harvest, and if your bees are doing well through winter time (assuming you have a winter period)?

  • So you like the flow hive then I take it good we are thinking of getting one just to have the honey for the family

  • I don't see where the honey is coming from? How do they get the cells open? Are the cells created by the bees themselves, or are they plastic or something? It's a real cool idea.

  • Hi Fred

    As it was your videos that encouraged me to buy a flow frame sorry you get my questions and I hope u don't mind.
    My flow hive 2 is bursting at the seams with bees and 5 frames full of brood ready to hatch. But no activity in the flow frames. After check for swarm cells as colony is big I scrapped wax and honey of the side of the box and pushed it into the middle 2 frames hoping the bees will start working the frames. Did I do the right thing and if not your insight would be appreciated. Regards Gareth

  • Something about this is just incredibly soothing.. Wonderful footage and voiceover. Thank you for taking the time, sir! 👍👌✌

  • If you want SUPER light, delicate honey, try starthistle honey from N. California. Stuff is phenomenal.

  • I’m curious about something. Are the boxes that are under the flow box strictly for the nest or will they expand their honey to those boxes too?
    Also, this looked like a 7 or 8 sectioned box. How many sections full of honey do you keep full for their use?
    I’m not 100% sure of beekeeping terminology so please forgive me if I sound stupid but I am studying to see if this is something I would like to do for myself.

  • Probably a dumb question but can you add a 2nd brood box to these for a bigger hive and to aid in overwinter food storage?

  • When i catch my colony next year i will bee practicing old keeping techniques and only harvesting 1 time a year. 2 times just seems greedy

  • Thanks for posting this. Still watching as i write. Watched a promotional video for this type of frame so had a question that came up in the comments of the promo video: Does the shifting wall movement of the flow frame cones harm the bees?

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