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Author Topic: question about managing foundation less hives  (Read 1672 times)
jsmob
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« on: February 17, 2008, 10:08:14 PM »

I have a question about managing foundation less hives.
I would like to use the crush comb method this year to harvest my honey, but the problem I am seeing is that I love late fall honey, ( the darker the better ), but the girls stop wax production around June. Our late honey flow runs from Sept, Oct, and Nov. Roughly.
Question; Will the girls draw comb out for this. If not how would you go about trying to gather some of this honey and what type of hive management would you use?
Thank you for your help. jsmob
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Jerrymac
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« Reply #1 on: February 18, 2008, 12:32:23 AM »

They build comb if they need the storage space.
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« Reply #2 on: February 18, 2008, 07:38:55 AM »

They will most likely store the Fall honey in the brood area as rearing will be slowing down.  This wouldn't be good for comb honey, but since you are crushing it shouldn't be an issue.
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« Reply #3 on: February 18, 2008, 11:00:37 PM »

They build comb if they need the storage space.

You can get them to build comb into September by pulling a few drawn frames and replacing them with empty frames.
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jsmob
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« Reply #4 on: February 19, 2008, 02:48:02 AM »

Thank you for your thoughts, it helps out alot.  J's mob
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« Reply #5 on: February 19, 2008, 08:33:46 AM »

One problem is that the brood rearing is shutting down, so that the bees have lots more space in the broodnest, and (in my experience) the fall flow isn't all that strong, YMMV, also depends on the weather.  By late summer/fall I usually have a partly empty deep on the bottom.
So they won't draw new comb and they end up putting quite a bit below where they do have drawn comb already.

I don't bother with the fall honey, since in my area it smells like gym sock tea.  But if I wanted it, I'd imagine that I'd try to get the brood nest to the smallest size possible, no empty frames, and put the super on that.  If they don't have space, then they will draw comb, as indicated.  The stronger the flow, the more they will draw.

Rick
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