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Author Topic: Wax building - nectar vs. honey  (Read 922 times)
ziffabeek
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« on: May 16, 2011, 07:01:39 PM »

Can bees use honey stores to build comb or only nectar.  I read that they use nectar to make into wax, but I was wondering if they will use extra honey stores to get the same result?

Thanks!
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ziffa
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AllenF
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« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2011, 07:10:29 PM »

Honey, nectar, and syrup all can be burned into wax by the bees.   Wax is a product of the body, from food they eat.
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AllenF
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« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2011, 07:12:05 PM »

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beeswax     a good read.
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AllenF
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« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2011, 07:17:56 PM »

http://www.beeswaxco.com/howBeesMakeWax.htm     - a better read on the bee part
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FRAMEshift
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« Reply #4 on: May 16, 2011, 08:56:38 PM »

Can bees use honey stores to build comb or only nectar.  I read that they use nectar to make into wax, but I was wondering if they will use extra honey stores to get the same result?

Thanks!
love,
ziffa

Bees are building wax when they need more storage space for nectar or brood.  That is generally happening at the same time nectar is coming in,  so nectar is the most likely immediate source of food when they are making wax.  But if honey was all they had, they would use it.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2011, 12:50:30 AM »

>Can bees use honey stores to build comb or only nectar.  I read that they use nectar to make into wax, but I was wondering if they will use extra honey stores to get the same result?

If it's stored, they don't need was to store it.  They build comb when they need comb.  They need comb when there is a influx of food needing storage.  So usually that's nectar, but if they are robbing a hive, it's honey.  They have no reason to use THEIR stores to build storage.
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Michael Bush
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ziffabeek
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« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2011, 04:32:52 PM »

Thanks everybody! 

I was wondering if they would use the honey they back-filled the brood nest with to build the comb in the empty super so they could start laying again.  I gave them one empty frame in the brood nest, but they had filled every spare cell with honey it seems.  Iddee advised they'd probably swarmed but I was wondering if they would empty out the brood boxes for the new queen and if they would do it by using the honey/nectar there to make the comb in the super to move it into, if that makes sense. 

Just musing about what they are going to do.  I am going to go in again this weekend and see if I need to try and give them another empty deep frame.  They had pulled out about 3 frames in the new super by last Saturday, so I'm wondering whether it will be all pulled by this weekend.  I guess we'll see!

Thanks again for the replies! 

love,
ziffa
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iddee
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« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2011, 06:58:00 PM »

They will move honey upward at times, to make room for brood.
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Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2011, 05:02:10 PM »

They will move honey upward at times, to make room for brood.

They will consolidate like stages of nectar as it is processed into honey in the same cells.  10 cells of raw nectar will, over time, be consolidated into a single cell of honey.  As long as it is uncapped bees an and will move honey all over the hive.  Sometimes it is done to provide more brood space within the brood chamber.
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