Greetings . . .
While Xmas shopping yesterday for my wife, I came across tree ornaments of clear glass. They are hollow but flat, about 1" thick, and hold about 1 cup of water. I would like to give them as gifts next year, if I could get them fill w/ comb.
How can I get my bees to draw comb inside?
Dave W . . .
A NewBEE with 1 hive.
First package installed
Good luck. Bees are reluctant to build comb in small spaces until the big spaces have been used. So it usually requires a bit of crowding to get them to start using smaller spaces. This, of course, risks swarming. The delima that every cassette comb honey producer deals with every year.
Your space is even smaller, so I don't know how you'll do. How do you get the comb out?
Somewhere (here??) I have read about bees building comb in jars as a novelty. I thought an ornament would be a nice "beekeeper" gift. If there is no honey inside, why take out the comb?
The bees won't build comb inside unless they plan to put honey in it. So there will be honey.
I've heard of people doing jars. I haven't tried it.
It used to be a regular trick in the days before moveable combs. You took a skep-sized hive with a hole in the top for an upper story, put a bell jar over the hole, and kept it covered. I haven't tried it yet, butit seems to have worked. Of course, in a hive that size, the a strong colony probably was quite crowded.