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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
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    Wakefield, MA, USA
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    224

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    During the 80's or early 90's there were full page back cover ads in the bee mags for a comb product which had specially-shaped cells (concave or convex?) and I believe it was some sort of artificial comb. It was supposed to reduce mite reproduction. Anyone remember or use these, and what was the theory behind the design?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    46,336

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    I believe PermaComb did advertise that they could cut down on varroa because the bees can't rework the PermaComb into drone comb and the Varroa were thought, at that time, to reproduce in the drone cells. Since the bees build drone between the boxes with PermaComb, that's probably irelevant and since the Varroa reproduce in worker cells it's probably irelevant. However since the cell size on PermaComb is smaller you'll probably get somewhat less Varroa. Since it's not 4.9mm, though, probably not enough less. I wax coated mine and it's the equivelant of 4.95mm. With this I get a day shorter capping and post capping times and it seems sufficient to deal with the Varroa.

    Ian Rumsey talks about horizontal vs vertical and what he thinks is the effect on the Varroa.

    http://www.bee-l.com/biobeefiles/ian/varroa_cell.htm
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
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    Wakefield, MA, USA
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    Thanks, Michael. The stuff I am thinking of wasn't called "permacomb," I don't think. But it likely did incorporate some of the ideas mentioned in the article you mentioned.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Kiel WI, USA
    Posts
    2,368

    Post

    ANP Bee Comb Inserts

    They were still advertising in Bee Culture through '96.

    http://listserv.albany.edu:8080/cgi-...bee-l&P=R13014

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Location
    New York City
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    3,401

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    > They were still advertising in Bee Culture
    > through '96.

    ...yet another example of a wonderful theory
    that failed to convince the mites that it was
    true. [img]smile.gif[/img]

    Theory is the same as reality, in theory. [img]smile.gif[/img]

    And citing a Bee-L post is like citing an
    article published in the "Weekly World News".
    There is much that is very good and original
    posted to Bee-L, but what is good is not
    original, and what is original is not very good.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Wakefield, MA, USA
    Posts
    224

    Post

    Ah, yes, ANP inserts. Thanks for the information on the design and theory behind it, dcross. Guess they were too expensive to be widely used.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Kiel WI, USA
    Posts
    2,368

    Post

    <<And citing a Bee-L post is like citing an
    article published in the "Weekly World News".>>

    I actually had to do a search to find out what the "Weekly World News" was! Maybe there's hope for me yet

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Catonsville, MD. USA
    Posts
    251

    Post

    Mike;

    PermaComb did in fact at that time, advertise that the comb could be used for Varroa mite control. The thinking then, applicable now as then, I had and still now, utilize.

    Since PermaComb is 100% workder cell sized, there is virtually no place for the bees to raise drone brood which research has shown is more of a Varroa magnet than worker brood.

    What users of PermaComb would do, is select a couple of the combs and cut out a 3 or 4 inch square of the lower corner of 1 or 2 combs. The bees will invariably build drone comb there in which the queen will lay drone brood. The beekeeper can then easily use his hive tool to shave out the drone comb brood, effectively reducing mite counts as much as 50%. This mechanical means of reducing Varroa is still used. I have used it with effective results for a number of years now. This concept is not new.

    Furthermore, I have measured a number of PermaCombs with a caliper AFTER the bees have "cycled" it and have found that the ID is reduced from the new comb ID from 5.0-5.1mm to somewhere between 4.8-4.9mm. I believe the bees eventually accomplish what would occur by waxing the comb initially as your do manually. Of course by doing so, initial acceptance is facilitated.

    I have a number of hives with foundation AND PermaComb in the brood chambers. And a number of hives 100% PermaComb. I have not used chemicals on the 100% PermaComb brood chamber hives (except Honey-B-Healthy in feed).

    Thanx.
    John Seets
    ...When seconds count, 911 is just minutes away....

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