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Author Topic: Bee foundations and comb and brood cells.  (Read 1790 times)
Joelel
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« on: August 13, 2009, 02:33:43 PM »

Does the honey comb or the brood cells in the brood boxes and suppers ever have to be changed or do the bees keep everything clean and rebuild everything ?
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Acts2:37: Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
38: Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
39: For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.
40: And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation
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« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2009, 05:34:27 PM »

They tear out old comb and do patch work rebuilding if you leave it long enough.  It's not always pretty.  It's probably a good plan to harvest some of the wax each year and give them some space to build comb.  If gives the wax-building workers something to do.  Try a foundationless frame or 2 and let the bees build what they want.  It is amazing to see them "festooning".

I find that the queen likes to lay eggs in the supers a few days after they have been extracted, put back on the hive and cleaned up by the workers. I don't know why.
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« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2009, 07:27:01 PM »

While the bees will make repairs to comb when necessary it is recommended that you rotate a few frames out every year and replace them with new ones to keep the chemical and bacteria level down in the hive.
Usually you move the ones that you want to get rid of it to the outside of the brood box where the queen is less inclined to lay, when the brood hatches take those frames out.
You can then move two more to the outside and do the same thing until you have replaced them all.
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deknow
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« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2009, 07:58:50 PM »

natalie,

what bacteria are you worried about?

deknow
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Joelel
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« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2009, 08:03:41 PM »

How do ya get wax off the plastic foundations ?
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Acts2:37: Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
38: Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
39: For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.
40: And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation
bassman1977
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« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2009, 09:28:13 PM »

How do ya get wax off the plastic foundations ?

Use your hive tool and scrape it off.  I don't take it down all the way.  The bees can rebuild it then and you get the majority of the wax refreshed.  I'm sure others will tell you to scrape it down all the way and brush on new wax, but that seems time consuming, messy, pain in the butt, etc., etc.   Smiley
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Pond Creek Farm
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« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2009, 09:58:33 PM »

Bassman, how do you scrape off only part of the comb?  Every time I try it, if get all the way down to the base and then run along that flat surface.  It is a pain to rewax; I agree. 
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« Reply #7 on: August 13, 2009, 10:39:01 PM »

natalie,

what bacteria are you worried about?

deknow

Not me specifically, just repeating what "they" recommend, usuallyl because of the black frames that are many years old I assume. I use foundationless frames myself so they are usually rotated out due to necessity.
My concerns would be the chemicals, as you know. But I don't use them in my hive and never have but who knows what chemicals can be brought into the hive from the environment.
Actually now that I think of it I wonder how living near and keeping hives near a busy traffic road would fit into that scenario regarding chemical absorption into the combs.
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Joelel
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« Reply #8 on: August 14, 2009, 10:34:34 AM »

Well lets see,It looks like to me. It would be as much work for the bees to repair the cut off wax as it would be to start new comb from a new foundation. We may just go to wood frames and replace foundations when needed. The easyest way for the bees and me.
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Acts2:37: Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
38: Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
39: For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.
40: And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation
bassman1977
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« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2009, 10:59:09 AM »

Bassman, how do you scrape off only part of the comb?  Every time I try it, if get all the way down to the base and then run along that flat surface.  It is a pain to rewax; I agree.  

Honestly I don't really try hard.  I use my hive tool.  I wish I could tell you a trick or something.  I guess the one thing I do is just not take it down to the plastic right away.  Just scrape little by little.

Well lets see,It looks like to me. It would be as much work for the bees to repair the cut off wax as it would be to start new comb from a new foundation. We may just go to wood frames and replace foundations when needed. The easiest way for the bees and me.

The bees will have to work to repair the wax but who cares.  The bees repair and rebuild all the time, especially when putting freshly extracted supers back on the hive.  My thing is, if something doesn't kill the bees or slow them down, etc, why not make it as easy on yourself as possible?  Personally I don't want to spend hours rolling wax on hundreds of frames.  I don't really do the plastic frames any more.  I put those in the supers and they work fantastic up there.  I am doing natural comb in the brood boxes.  Tongue depressors for them to draw on and they are also wired for support.  Makes it even easier to replace the comb.  Just cut the comb off and replace.
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Joelel
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« Reply #10 on: August 14, 2009, 01:00:28 PM »

The reason I ask is because,I know each bee has a job to do for so many days and I just don't want the wax repair worker to slow down the honey collectors because they don't have anywhere to put the honey.

Progression of tasks

[edit] Cell cleaning (Day 1-2)
Brood cells must be cleaned before the next use - cells will be inspected by the queen and if unsatisfactory will not be used. Worker bees in the cleaning phase will perform this cleaning. if not cleaned worker bee must do it again


[edit] Nurse bee (Day 3-11)
Nurse bees feed the worker larvae worker jelly secreted from the same glands that produce royal jelly.

Advanced Nurse Bees (Day 6-11)
Feed royal jelly to the queen larva and drones receive worker jelly for 1 to 3 days at which time they are moved to honey and pollen.

[edit] Wax production (Day 12-17)
Wax Bees - build cells from wax, repair old cells, and store nectar and pollen brought in by other workers. Early in the worker's career she will exude wax from the space between several of her abdominal segments. Four sets of wax glands, situated inside the last four ventral segments of the abdomen, produce wax for comb construction.


Worker activities

[edit] Honey sealing
Mature honey, sufficiently dried, is sealed tightly with wax to prevent absorption of moisture from the air by workers deputized to do same.


[edit] Drone feeding
Drones do not feed themselves; they are fed by workers.


[edit] Queen attendants
The attendants groom and feed the queen. They also collect QMP (Queen Mandibular Pheromone) from the queen and share it with the bees around them who also share it spreading its effects through the hive.


[edit] Honeycomb building
Workers will take wax from wax producing workers and build the comb with it.


[edit] Pollen packing
Pollen brought into the hive for feeding the brood is also stored. It must be packed firmly into comb cells and mixed with a small amount of honey so that it will not spoil. Unlike honey, which does not support bacterial life, stored pollen will become rancid without proper care. it has to be kept in honey cells.


[edit] Propolizing
The walls of the hive will be covered with a thin coating of propolis, a resinous substance obtained from plants. In combination with enzymes added by the worker this will have antibacterial and antifungal properties.

Propolis is also used to close off excessive ventilation and entrances.


[edit] Mortuary bees
Dead bees and failed larvae must be removed from the hive to prevent disease and allow cells to be reused. They will be carried some distance from the hive by mortuary bees.


[edit] Fanning bees
Worker bees fan the hive, cooling it with evaporated water brought by water carriers.[citation needed] They direct airflow into the hive or out of the hive depending on need.


[edit] Guard Bees (Days 18 - 21)
protect the entrance of the hive from enemies

Soldier bees
Soldiers hang around near the entrance and attack invaders. They work in concert with entrance guards.

Entrance guard bees
These inspect incoming bees to ensure that they are bringing in food and have the correct hive odor. Other bees will be rejected or attacked with soldier bees.

Outside guard bees
Outer guards may take short flights around the outside of the hive in response to disturbances.


[edit] Water carriers
When the hive is in danger of overheating, these bees will obtain water, usually from within a short distance from the hive and bring it back to spread on the backs of fanning bees. The worker bee has a crop separate from the nectar crop for this purpose.


[edit] Foraging bees (Days 22 - 42)
The forager and scout bees travel (up to 1.5 miles) to a nectar source, pollen source or to collect propolis.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Worker_bee#Pollen_packing
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Acts2:37: Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
38: Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
39: For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.
40: And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation
bassman1977
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« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2009, 01:12:25 PM »

That's a nice post.  I knew there were tasks based on the bee's age but I never saw a table like that.  I understand your concern, I can't really make any more comments based on what you posed.  Personally,  have never noticed any production slow downs because of the wax rebuilding or building of new comb.  I'm sure there's some slow down since it takes honey to make wax, but maybe it's been negligible enough that I didn't notice.  I wonder what Mr. Bray or Mr. Bush would have to say on the matter.
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Joelel
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« Reply #12 on: August 14, 2009, 01:31:56 PM »

That's a nice post.  I knew there were tasks based on the bee's age but I never saw a table like that.  I understand your concern, I can't really make any more comments based on what you posed.  Personally,  have never noticed any production slow downs because of the wax rebuilding or building of new comb.  I'm sure there's some slow down since it takes honey to make wax, but maybe it's been negligible enough that I didn't notice.  I wonder what Mr. Bray or Mr. Bush would have to say on the matter.

As a home builder for many yrs. I know different phase of construction can slow down others for different reasons.I figure this would be true also if some workers couldn't keep up with their job in the hives. With man messing around in the hives and doing things that are not natural could slow them down,so,I figure if we do everything we can to help them,their honey production will be better. You see I'm planning on starting a bee farm and want to do everything for the benefit of the bees and me.
« Last Edit: August 14, 2009, 01:52:03 PM by Joelel » Logged

Acts2:37: Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
38: Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
39: For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.
40: And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation
bassman1977
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« Reply #13 on: August 14, 2009, 03:34:35 PM »

That's a nice post.  I knew there were tasks based on the bee's age but I never saw a table like that.  I understand your concern, I can't really make any more comments based on what you posed.  Personally,  have never noticed any production slow downs because of the wax rebuilding or building of new comb.  I'm sure there's some slow down since it takes honey to make wax, but maybe it's been negligible enough that I didn't notice.  I wonder what Mr. Bray or Mr. Bush would have to say on the matter.

As a home builder for many yrs. I know different phase of construction can slow down others for different reasons.I figure this would be true also if some workers couldn't keep up with their job in the hives. With man messing around in the hives and doing things that are not natural could slow them down,so,I figure if we do everything we can to help them,their honey production will be better. You see I'm planning on starting a bee farm and want to do everything for the benefit of the bees and me.

I totally agree with you.  It's been said a lot that by going into your hives for inspections sets them back 3 days so they can get things back in order.  I guess I am wondering is, when does the cost outweigh the benefit.  Is being easier on the comb and extra time spent worth the extra pound of honey or two of honey or would you rather save a few hours and lose a pound or two of honey?  I guess in a sense, it's personal preference. 
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BoBn
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« Reply #14 on: August 14, 2009, 09:18:31 PM »

It's been said a lot that by going into your hives for inspections sets them back 3 days so they can get things back in order. 

That must be quite an inspection to disrupt things so much that it takes 3 days to repair.

Sometimes, the slower you work the sooner you finish.  cool
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"Millions of innocent men, women, and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined, and imprisoned; yet we have not advanced one inch toward uniformity. What has been the effect of coercion? To make one-half the world fools and the other half hypocrites."
--Thomas Jefferson
bassman1977
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« Reply #15 on: August 14, 2009, 10:24:12 PM »

Quote
That must be quite an inspection to disrupt things so much that it takes 3 days to repair.

I don't know if that's right or not.  But I've seen that posted on here a lot.  3 days seems like an awful long time.
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« Reply #16 on: August 15, 2009, 08:31:24 PM »

If you start with large cell foundation they will accumulate many layers of cocoons before chewing them out.  If you start with small cell they will only have a few layers before they chew them out.  This seems to work fine without replacing constantly.
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« Reply #17 on: August 16, 2009, 01:30:28 AM »

Is there scientific evidence to prove the "3 day theory"?  I can't see how that can happen.  I "bother" my bees all the time and I have not missed a honey flow yeat. Smiley
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« Reply #18 on: August 16, 2009, 07:31:18 AM »

Let us not forget the bees don't quit working when the sun goes down Hive activity is 24/7.
A lot of bees can do  other things after foraging is done for the day.
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Joelel
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« Reply #19 on: August 16, 2009, 10:57:02 AM »

Let us not forget the bees don't quit working when the sun goes down Hive activity is 24/7.
a lot of bees can do  other things after foraging is done for the day.

Yes,all them bees hanging around on the porch with their beer needs to get to work,think I'll get my whip out.
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Acts2:37: Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
38: Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
39: For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.
40: And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation
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