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Author Topic: A What if Question  (Read 2111 times)
Jerrymac
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« on: January 14, 2005, 12:18:02 PM »

You have the small cell foundation and place on it you average run of the mill large celled bees. Would they be able to build from the small cell foundation? I'm guessing they would. Why not? Surely they can chew out what they need to and get on with building what would be comfortable for them.

Thoughts? Experiences?
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Lesli
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« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2005, 11:00:20 AM »

I tried it last year with a nuc. They did build out some of the foundation, and did it ok. Usually, from what I've read, they "misdraw" it often, maybe creating those beautiful pieces of floating comb to get the size they really want.

There's lots of discussion about this on the Organics group over at Yahoo. I gather it takes a few tries for them to get it right.
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Phoenix
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« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2005, 12:39:43 PM »

Bees will draw cells in direct relation to their body size, the larger the bees the larger the cells.  Small Cell Foundation will give them a guide they will try to abide by, but for the most part their body size will not allow them to draw it correctly.  Some of the comb will be drawn correctly, but most will not.  Therefore there is a "regression" process that will take place before you will achieve fully retrogressed bees.
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Robo
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« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2005, 01:51:55 PM »

At best it usually takes at least two regressions.  The first will get you into the 5.1 range, and the second into the 4.9 range.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2005, 01:37:57 PM »

Quote
You have the small cell foundation and place on it you average run of the mill large celled bees. Would they be able to build from the small cell foundation? I'm guessing they would. Why not? Surely they can chew out what they need to and get on with building what would be comfortable for them.


They will build about 5.1mm as has been said.  Why not ask a better question?  If you put them on nothing what would they build?  If the spaced the combs apart like they wanted and built the cells like they wanted?  http://incolor.inetnebr.com/bush/images/BroodNestInFeeder.JPG First they would build brood combs as close as 30mm (1 3/16") with mosth averaging about 1 1/4".  http://incolor.inetnebr.com/bush/images/CombSpacing30.JPG They will build a much richer variety of sizes ranging from 4.7mm to 6.6 with most of the brood still in about the 5.1mm range, but some surprising sections of 4.7mm.  http://incolor.inetnebr.com/bush/images/47mmComb.JPG Another regression and you'll be getting a lot of 4.6mm with most of the worker brood 5.0mm or smaller.  Why not try it?  It's more fun to find out isn't it?  If you space the frames closer (1 1/4" like Huber's hive) you will get even smaller sizes.
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