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Author Topic: About this popcicle thing?  (Read 1319 times)

Offline Wes Sapp

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About this popcicle thing?
« on: March 15, 2008, 11:19:30 PM »
If I wanted to go to foundationless frames using popcicle sticks is there a process that I need to follow? If there is could some one give me some guidance or point me to a link?
Wes Sapp

Offline JP

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Offline Wes Sapp

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Re: About this popcicle thing?
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2008, 01:08:04 PM »
Thanks JP. I get how to attach the sticks to the frames I was wondering about introducing the frames to the hive. Do you put a super with 10 of these frames on a hive and as they draw them out keep adding supers while taking off the supers with foundation? Or do you have to do a "shake-down" not sure thats what it's called but shake the bees into new supers with these frames in it?
Wes Sapp

Offline Jerrymac

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Re: About this popcicle thing?
« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2008, 01:29:20 PM »
Are you trying to regress your bees?
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Offline Wes Sapp

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Re: About this popcicle thing?
« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2008, 02:55:41 PM »
Maybe, that's why I want to learn more about it. Are there other advantages in going foundationless besides not having to buy it anymore?
Wes Sapp

Offline JordanM

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Re: About this popcicle thing?
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2008, 05:19:44 PM »
Maybe, that's why I want to learn more about it. Are there other advantages in going foundationless besides not having to buy it anymore?

Small cell

Offline Pond Creek Farm

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Re: About this popcicle thing?
« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2008, 08:58:29 PM »
With repect to small or natural cell, I have enjoyed Michael Bush's website www.bushfarms.com.  He gives a great explanation of the benefits of natural cell and the process of regression.  I am converting my one existing hive to natural cell size and am starting my packages off this year on starter strips of small cell (4.9) right from the git go.  This regression process is a bit daunting, especially in deciding when the first round of starter stripped frames need to be culled and to let the bees do another round of regression and the issue of how long I should leave the frames in there once I get them regressed.  There has to be a time that a frame should be recycled and to allow the bees to draw fresh comb (but perhaps I am wrong in this assumption). 

But to answer your question the other advantage to natural cell size is the lack of need to chemically medicate the bees against mites and creating a hive more likely to survive what is thrown at them. This is, at least, my limited understanding.  Intuitively, however, it seems that what the girls want to do naturally is likely best for them and us.  Mother nature rarely, if ever,  gets it wrong, so I am inclined to allow natural tendencies to control hive construction.
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Offline Wes Sapp

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Re: About this popcicle thing?
« Reply #7 on: March 16, 2008, 10:01:55 PM »
Thanks Brain, but I think I found my answer in another post by TWT he said:

"its not as simple as most people talk about, some get lucky but very very few, the rest have to take time to get bee's regressed, that's like people using starter strips, I have used a 100 but none drew smaller that 5.2, most drew 5.3-5.35 on average, that's some at 5.2 and some at 5.4, that's the smallest I had with 25 hives. besides with starter strip I didn't like them at all, some frames took 2 years before they attach the sides and bottom, I only use starter strips for cut comb now when I am out of cut comb foundation, all foundation for me..... I have tried small cell foundation and my bee's drew it out better than I thought they would, but my bee's were doing fine without it before I bought it so I just went back to buying regular Kelly foundation, bee's still doing fine and I don't have to pay I higher price for that small cell foundation..... that just my 2 pennies worth!!!!"
Wes Sapp

Offline Brian D. Bray

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Re: About this popcicle thing?
« Reply #8 on: March 17, 2008, 09:06:29 PM »
With repect to small or natural cell, I have enjoyed Michael Bush's website www.bushfarms.com.  He gives a great explanation of the benefits of natural cell and the process of regression.  I am converting my one existing hive to natural cell size and am starting my packages off this year on starter strips of small cell (4.9) right from the git go.  This regression process is a bit daunting, especially in deciding when the first round of starter stripped frames need to be culled and to let the bees do another round of regression and the issue of how long I should leave the frames in there once I get them regressed.  There has to be a time that a frame should be recycled and to allow the bees to draw fresh comb (but perhaps I am wrong in this assumption). 

But to answer your question the other advantage to natural cell size is the lack of need to chemically medicate the bees against mites and creating a hive more likely to survive what is thrown at them. This is, at least, my limited understanding.  Intuitively, however, it seems that what the girls want to do naturally is likely best for them and us.  Mother nature rarely, if ever,  gets it wrong, so I am inclined to allow natural tendencies to control hive construction.

All true, yet getting the bees back to nature also includes not medicating or using other "Scientific" shortcuts.  IMO, good beekeeping is a matter of manipulating feral hives.  Treat and manage your hives as if they were feral with the exception of Langstroth or Top Bar hives and occassional feeding of simple syrup and let the bees draw comb from scratch and otherwise behave as if feral.  It will, over a few years, solve your mite problem as a natural balance between hive and symbiot is reached.
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Offline Michael Bush

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Re: About this popcicle thing?
« Reply #9 on: March 18, 2008, 10:36:50 PM »
If you want a sure fire way to regress them, buy enough Honey Super Cell to fill one box and put your package on that, or give it to an existing hive so there is no other room in the hive.  Once the queen is using it, you can keep pulling the large cell out and swapping in either foundationless, small cell or more Honey Super Cell.

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