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Author Topic: new pictures - need your input  (Read 3182 times)
Algonam
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« on: July 23, 2011, 12:18:07 PM »

Still a newbee.....1st year...started with 4 frame nucs...2 hives.
I currently have 2 hives, each with 2 levels of 10 frame supers. Now they are almost full, except for frame #1 and #10 on the upper boxes. No queen excluder yet. No visible sign of honey yet. I could be wrong, but I think it is all brood. There is 5 weeks of warm weather left here before Fall starts in with cooler weather. I need to know what to do next!
I'll try to attach pics in a minute.
Thank you.


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Algonam
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« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2011, 12:32:07 PM »



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L Daxon
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« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2011, 12:58:25 PM »

OK.  I'll go out on a limb here and say that looks like capped honey to me, not brood.

Or else it is the tighest brook pattern I've ever seen, with not one missed cell.  Capped brood is usually a bit darker, rougher and has a few spotty non-capped cells where extra honey or pollen is occasionally stored.



This is what capped brood looks like
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linda d
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« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2011, 01:11:50 PM »

Ditto. LOL. That top picture is a pretty good sign of visible honey as well as the bottom pic. If frames # 1 & #10 are empty, rotate them in towards the middle.
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sc-bee
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« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2011, 01:16:56 PM »

 Pictures not showing your mug ---Capped Honey Wink
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« Reply #5 on: July 23, 2011, 01:28:21 PM »

best test.  stick your finger in it  grin

that's honey and it looks about ready to extract.  congratulations.

since you have two deeps and no honey supers, you risk being honey bound with that much honey in there.  put your empty frames over whatever brood there is in the bottom box or pull some of those frames and replace.  if you have been feeding, save those frames for feeding back later.  if not, enjoy if you don't think you'll need them for the bees.

you might consider adding a honey super to those hives  Wink

how much brood is in the bottom box?
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

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« Reply #6 on: July 23, 2011, 02:37:00 PM »

Now that you mention it, it is much whiter than the capped brood that I remember seeing just about 1 month ago. To inspect the bottom box, do I remove the entire top box with frames in it? or remove all of the frames, then the box....I am afraid of damaging my precious queens!..whom I am happy with!
My questions are coming from having absolutely no experience......
I want to ensure a strong hive for the winter. If I put a queen excluder on top of the 2nd box now and add on another box of frames/foundation will I be able to extract some honey for ourselves, while allowing the bees to continue building strength for winter?
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« Reply #7 on: July 23, 2011, 02:40:18 PM »

Quote
To inspect the bottom box, do I remove the entire top box with frames in it?

you will probably need to pull those honey frames before you try to lift the box....unless you have a discount at your chiropractor smiley  put them in another box temporarily AND COVER THEM or you may start robbing while you are trying to work.
it is very unlilkly that your queen will be on the honey frames, but you may smoke them a little to drive her and her friends down.  then start at the outside and remove the frames.


Quote
If I put a queen excluder on top of the 2nd box now and add on another box of frames/foundation will I be able to extract some honey for ourselves, while allowing the bees to continue building strength for winter?

a couple of things here:  i suspect that you are honey bound.  this means that you may already be behind in brood production.  1st, get some of those honey frames out of the 2nd deep and replace then with drawn comb if you have it, or foundation if you don't.  2nd, i would not use an excluder.  if you do not have drawn comb for your honey super, the excluder will be enough to discourage them from going up there and working it.  then you are back to your orriginal problem.  + you need to get brood production up if you are honey bound and if the queen chooses to go into the honey super, that's not the end of the world.

while you are checking out those bottom boxes look for swarm cells. 

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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
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« Reply #8 on: July 23, 2011, 02:45:16 PM »

when you get into the bottom boxes take some pictures.  let us see how things look down there.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
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« Reply #9 on: July 23, 2011, 02:47:25 PM »

If you want to better insure winter survival I'd leave the excluder off this late in the season and stop taking any more honey once the goldenrod starts in your area.

thomas
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« Reply #10 on: July 23, 2011, 04:04:05 PM »

Check your stores for winter. If everything is good (brood and honey stores), I would add a supper but no extractor this year (since it is getting late in the summer.) If you are 'very' new to beekeeping I suggest only holding your frames over the grass if you are sure the queen is not on the frame. Otherwise hold over the boxes so if the queen is on the frame, she will not drop into the grass and be lost.

But the frame you are holding looks good.   -Mike
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Bee-Bop
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« Reply #11 on: July 23, 2011, 04:26:25 PM »

Here's a way to forever tell a frame of honey from a frame of brood, pick one up in each hand, notice the big difference of weight !!

Bee-Bop
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Algonam
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« Reply #12 on: July 23, 2011, 04:56:01 PM »

OK, everything sounds pretty good so far considering this is my first time at this.
How about it if tomorrow morning I do another inspection. This time I'll remove the top box and frames, and take pictures of the bottom boxes and look for brood. When I find which frames the brood is in I'll make sure the frames in the box directly above the brood have new frames (I only have with foundation) so hopefully the queen will move up and lay on the new frames in the upper box?
Is this correct? Did I understand this correctly?
Thanks again!
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sc-bee
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« Reply #13 on: July 23, 2011, 04:56:21 PM »

>Now that you mention it, it is much whiter than the capped brood that I remember seeing just about 1 month ago.

As the honey ages it will sometimes get real dark but the finger test kathy mentioned will definitively take the guessing out of the equation.
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sc-bee
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« Reply #14 on: July 23, 2011, 05:05:20 PM »

>When I find which frames the brood is in I'll make sure the frames in the box directly above the brood have new frames (I only have with foundation) so hopefully the queen will move up and lay on the new frames in the upper box?

Also you can remove honey frames in the brood chamber. Replace them with foundation frames right against the outer brood frames. This will open up the bottom chamber.
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Algonam
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« Reply #15 on: July 23, 2011, 08:18:40 PM »

This all makes sense! Thank you.
I have 1 more picture I forgot to add. It is a picture of what looks like a fine dust at the entrance. Red/brown in colour.
this pic is looking down on to the landing area.


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sc-bee
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« Reply #16 on: July 23, 2011, 09:39:43 PM »

Looks like house cleaning from cleaning old cells ---- best I can tell from picture. Take hive tool and clear it out if you want.
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Algonam
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« Reply #17 on: July 24, 2011, 12:13:18 PM »

TODAYS UPDATE:
We went back to the hives this morning. As a newbee I was too uncomfortable to remove the entire top box so we had a good look and removed a center frame from the top box which was mostly all honey and some swollen blobs that turned out to be brood. We brought this home and have currently extracted close to 3 jars from this one frame. I replaced that center frame with an empty frame with foundation. We hope we didn't bother the queen in the process of sweeping the bees off. At the time I didn't realise there were some brood cells there.
Also we moved other frames around so that the empty frames are now in the middle.
Maybe next time I'll take the next step and remove that top box.
We are now enjoying a taste of out own first honey!!!
We figured we could get away with taking some since the 2nd level boxes are filling up quickly.
Today I will be buying or ordering more frames/foundation to add on the 3rd level.
To ensure we have more than enough in stores for winter can we also leave the 3rd level box on (if they manage to fill it)over winter.
I will attach a picture of that frame in a minute.
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kathyp
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« Reply #18 on: July 24, 2011, 12:24:59 PM »

you probably don't want to leave 3 boxes on for winter.  by September you will need to cram them down and arrange them for winter.  give yourself and them a week or so to recover then see if you can get to that bottom box.  if you remove frames from the outside and then move other frames over before moving them, you will not need to worry so much about rolling the queen.  

one of the reasons you need to check the bottom is to see if there is honey over the brood down there.  if there is, the queen may not cross it so the room you make above will just be filled with honey again and no chance that she'll lay.  you also need to know how much is stored below.  they can fool you and leave the bottom kind of empty.  you need to know that before winter.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
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« Reply #19 on: July 24, 2011, 12:41:29 PM »

Your queen wont immediately begin laying on the empty frames (foundation or foundationless) placed above and around broodnest, workers must draw it out first and generally desire a flow to do so.

When is your first killing frost (end of season)?  I worry about you taking too much honey in Canada at this time of year. 

Removing boxes can be simplified by bringing an empty one (or several) with you whenever visiting the beeyard.  It provides an easy transfer for collecting honey as well as expanding brood, splitting or making NUCs.  I also use cover cloths when splitting apart boxes so when separated bees are covered up and calm.

thomas
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Algonam
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« Reply #20 on: July 24, 2011, 01:07:34 PM »

I don't remember exactly when the first frost is as I haven't paid this much attention to exact dates before.
I imagine first front would be later in September.
Here is a pic of that middle frame we took out. Like I said above, those large blobs of honey were actually some brood about to hatch and only 2 or three tiny larvae. If I knew there was brood in there I wouldn't have touched it.
We are currently straining by hand!!!! as we weren't prepared to be doing this just yet, but we wanted to make room in the hive until we got our facts straight.


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stella
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« Reply #21 on: July 24, 2011, 03:30:41 PM »

Sometimes I learn the most from reading others posts. This has been very helpful to me also as Im in MN. Thanks for the info on not harvesting after the goldenrod blooms tbeek in Wisc.. That was something I needed to know but didnt think to ask.
Algonam, Im also a first year newbee. I think your doing really well this year! Great pics. Congrats on the honey harvest.
Im going out on a limb here.....that last pic suggests to me that your frames are not tightly fitting against each other. If they arent tight against one another it allows the bees to make fatter comb to fill in the space. Squeeze those puppies together.
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kathyp
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« Reply #22 on: July 24, 2011, 03:35:24 PM »

stella, the bees tend to build honey comb out much farther than brood comb.  if we have drawn comb, we sometimes use fewer frames in the honey supers for that reason.  if they draw it out farther it's much easier to uncap.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
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« Reply #23 on: July 24, 2011, 04:07:20 PM »

>Im going out on a limb here.....that last pic suggests to me that your frames are not tightly fitting against each other. If they arent tight against one another it allows the bees to make fatter comb to fill in the space.

Good observation stella ---- learning quickly Smiley Squeeze them together when starting with new foundation  and make corrections as you go if needed. Foundation between two uncapped frames usually leads to a mess in honey supers, if capped different story.


Looks as though you could possibly have started out a ten frame box of foundation with nine frames. But you are running all deeps probably had ten in the box. Start a box of foundation with ten frames and drop back to nine later with drawn comb (for honey supers). I've tried to count frames on your other pics but can't tell.
 
The brood was most likely drone comb because they often fill in extra space and cracks with drones. No harm in removing the frames. Losing a little brood in a case like this in ok.

Nice clear honey, mine is always dark in SC. Any idea of primary source-Nice pics Wink
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Algonam
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« Reply #24 on: July 24, 2011, 05:12:05 PM »

SC Bee,

I've had 10 frames per box since day 1.(Last week of May, this Spring)
 I did ask about 9 frames at one point though. These 2nd level boxes were only put on 3 weeks ago. Yes light honey, looks like Corona beer!
Primary source? Do you mean where did I get the nucs? A queen breeder in Port Hope, Ontario. I can dig out his name if you want it, just let me know if that is what you meant.
 So, please tell me what to do with the frame I've scraped clean.
I scraped it clean with a spatula, down to the foundation which is now sticky with honey leftovers. Should I just let it harden and then re-install it into the hive when I am putting on the 3rd level of boxes?
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kathyp
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« Reply #25 on: July 24, 2011, 05:20:14 PM »

put it in as is.  the bees will clean it up and redraw it. put it in your 2nd box next to the one you just put in and put that frame of honey that you pull (from an end) in your new box.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
Algonam
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« Reply #26 on: July 24, 2011, 05:49:27 PM »

OK...great idea! You are a wealth of information!
Maybe one day I'll have enough experience to help someone like you all are helping me.
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« Reply #27 on: July 24, 2011, 06:26:58 PM »

most of what i learned, i learned here from people who were willing to teach me.  everything else i learn from screwing things up   evil
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
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« Reply #28 on: July 24, 2011, 09:35:59 PM »

Primary source? Do you mean where did I get the nucs? A queen breeder in Port Hope, Ontario. I can dig out his name if you want it, just let me know if that is what you meant.
 

Primary nectar source.
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« Reply #29 on: July 25, 2011, 12:18:03 AM »

 applause
most of what i learned, i learned here from people who were willing to teach me.  everything else i learn from screwing things up   evil

This would make a perfect quote for a signature tag line.
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Algonam
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« Reply #30 on: July 25, 2011, 06:17:40 AM »

Oh....Primary food source!! Undecided

From what I could tell it is Loose Strife-wildflowers, or that and other wild flowers and trees. Some wild strawberries and lots of raspberries, but they didn't produce much this year. It is a mixture of old fields and mixed bush, with a bit of swamp in the gulleys.
Only 10 houses on my road that is 2 miles long, so not many gardens/flower gardens.
No commercial farms in the area, nor any working crop farms. 1 horse farm.
Pretty much wilderness.....
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kathyp
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« Reply #31 on: July 25, 2011, 09:01:21 AM »

fireweed around?
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
Algonam
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« Reply #32 on: July 25, 2011, 12:23:23 PM »

I just googled fireweed, and it looks like loose strife. If they aren't the same plant we may also have that too...
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« Reply #33 on: July 25, 2011, 01:04:58 PM »

just asking because fireweed is blooming at this time and it's a popular plant for the bees.  people like the honey. 
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
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« Reply #34 on: July 27, 2011, 02:31:17 PM »

I just checked on them again this morning. This time it was at 6:30am before the sun hit them. One hive was thriving, almost overflowing. I put a 3rd box on.
The other hive is the one where I took the frame of honey on Sunday and replaced it with a new frame of foundation. This hive was very quiet with only a few bees in it. Looked like hundreds of bees instaed of thousands. Either they swarmed and buzzed off or I did something very wrong....
The frame I installed on Sunday hadn't been touched yet, even though it was placed in the center between other frames with honey and capping.
Even though I found this, I still installed the 3rd box with frames/foundation.
Any thoughts?
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« Reply #35 on: July 27, 2011, 03:16:25 PM »

If they don't need it for storage or it is not in the brood chamber next to brood they will not draw it. They see it as a waste of energy and reserves.

As for the population of the low hive --- time to evaluate if it is not thriving as the other. This is why folks tell everyone to start with two hive and not one. You have a comparison.
- Is the population definitely different from 4 days ago?
-Did you enter the brood chamber and check for swarm cells?
-Can you find a queen?
-Can you see eggs not hatched if can not find queen?
- Are eggs standing up or lying down in cell (standing up queen present within 48 hrs?
- Do you have brood of all ages or just capped brood?

Just some of the questions to ask.
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Algonam
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« Reply #36 on: July 27, 2011, 04:20:12 PM »

Oh, very good questions...that make sense.
They aren't closeby....I hope to go back to check again tomorrow .....and will post findings.
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