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Carniolan bees at work drawing out comb in the super frames above the brood boxes below the queen separator.

Waiting on the first frames of honey

Building wax cells for honey storage.
A closer look.
My carnelian hive.
My Italian queen has been very busy laying eggs!
A full lower brood box in the Italian bee hive.

Two weeks ago, I added one super to my hive of carniolan bees because they were on their way toward filling up their second brood box with brood and I was ready to see if they're ready to make honey. They've been making it and storing it at the tops of their brood frames in both brood boxes, so I figured it was safe to add the super, which contains 10 shorter frames and is separated from the top brood box by a queen separator. The queen separator prevents the queen from laying eggs in the supers above while allowing the worker bees to fill the supers with honey. With that extra space, I'm hoping the bees move their honey from the two brood boxes below up into the supers giving them more room to live down in the deeps (brood boxes). 

I recently checked my hives on July 3 to see if there was honey in that super, but only found the bees building up the foundation into cells. That's OK. They'd only had the super on there for a little over a week. It was encouraging to see a lot of bees on the super frames and to see lots and lots of brood down in the top brood box. I hope to be checking them again sometime around July 10-13 to see where they're at.  

Checking my other hive with the Italian bees in it revealed a full bottom brood box and a half-full top brood box. By full and half-full, I mean of adult bees and brood. I'd say this hive is about two weeks behind my carniolan hive, but it looks like these girls are catching up and will be putting honey into a super that I hope to add the next time I check my hives.

There's been plenty of bee activity on the outside of the hives every day it isn't raining from around 6am to as late as 8:30pm, so it looks like I have two very healthy hives!