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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Fayetteville, Arkansas
    Posts
    5,013

    Post

    Does anyone have any advice on installing package bees on 4.9mm foundation? I have to do 20 of these come late April.

    Sol

  2. #2
    BILLY BOB Guest

    Post

    Installing a package onto 4.9mm is the best way to start. The bees will still need to be steped down again, but not as much as if you start out on the larger cells. Another good thing is you can start all of your future splits or packages on the same drawn foundation that you are going to use for your new packages.

    Billy Bob

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    West Harrison, NY, USA
    Posts
    261

    Post

    Billy Bob,

    Just to make a detail clear.

    I agree that future packages should be started on the smaller cell size comb drawn by the first package to be started on 4.9mm foundation. However, splits should be started on this comb ONLY if they are made from the 1st generation downsized bees, that is from bees that are currently living in cells made from 4.9mm foundation the first time around. It would be silly to do this on bees that have already been fully downsized to 4.9mm.
    Jorge

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, United States
    Posts
    397

    Post

    Billy Bob & Jorge:

    Only thing I would like to add is prepare the packages in the normal way with queen excluder on bottom board and wetting of wings of workers etc when hiving.

    Good information you two give here. The combs again can be reused for helping others in first regression.

    Glad you two did fine!

    Regards,

    Dee A. Lusby

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    West Harrison, NY, USA
    Posts
    261

    Post

    Dee,

    Last time I set up a package I simply sealed of the hive entrance with a reducer leaving the smallest entrance and then closing that off with grass. Is the excluder necessary for very long. you think? I did the above for a few days until the queen was laying, then left the small entrance open and gradually enlarged it as the hive got stronger.
    How long do you suggest leaving the excluder on (or rather, under)?

    Jorge

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, United States
    Posts
    397

    Post

    Jorge wrote:
    Last time I set up a package I simply sealed of the hive entrance with a reducer leaving the smallest entrance and then closing that off with grass. Is the excluder necessary for very long. you think? I did the above for a few days until the queen was laying, then left the small entrance open and gradually enlarged it as the hive got stronger.
    How long do you suggest leaving the excluder on (or rather, under)?

    Reply:
    Until the queen is laying, but by using the queen excluder you do not close the entrance off, and thus give the bees a chance to start finding natural forage instead of keeping them sealed up, which helps to acclimitize them quicker to the local area and position relative to sun they are in.

    Regards,

    Dee


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Brunswick, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    185

    Post

    Hi Dee,
    Can the bees bring in pollen through the queen excluder? Im getting two package bees on April 24 one im going to use 4.9 What are my chances of them drawing it out to 4.9 the first time. Any tricks to help them achieve this . Thank you very much\
    Yours in the Hobby
    Walt

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    43,651

    Post

    >Can the bees bring in pollen through the queen excluder?

    Yes.

    >Im getting two package bees on April 24 one im going to use 4.9 What are my chances of them drawing it out to 4.9 the first time.

    No chance. But they will be less stressed building whatever they do, and I'm betting it will be between 5.2 and 5.1mm.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    brown county,indiana,usa
    Posts
    571

    Post

    i'm gonna try 4.9 this year with packages,now i understand that the 1st generation of comb turns out to be about 5.2,can i just add the 2nd hive body with 4.9 after this and assume the newer and smaller generation will be working its way up,and draw out the 2nd hive body into 4.9 cells?also how do you keep tract of this if you switch them all the time ?,do you mark the tops of the frames?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    43,651

    Post

    >i'm gonna try 4.9 this year with packages,now i understand that the 1st generation of comb turns out to be about 5.2,can i just add the 2nd hive body with 4.9 after this and assume the newer and smaller generation will be working its way up,and draw out the 2nd hive body into 4.9 cells?

    Never assume anything. Use a metric runler and measure across 10 cells inside wall to outside wall and divide by 10. Adding the box and expecting it to be smaller is a good plan.

    >also how do you keep tract of this if you switch them all the time ?,do you mark the tops of the frames?

    I use starter strips of 4.9mm, full sheets of 4.9mm and blank starter strips. I mark the tops of the frame with a "Y" to show Housel positioning. Find the side with the "Y" right side up and put it on the top right side up from that side. I also mark it RF# or R# or RB# where R stands for regresseion, F stands for full sheet, B stands for blank foundation and # stands for the regression. If I think the frame is drawn well enough to be used in a future regression based on measurments, then I mark the average measurement on the top. e.g. 5.15mm or 4.95mm. I recommend a waterproof laundry marker for this. It's true I may someday reuse the frame for something else, but it's also true I want to know at a glance what I have. If it isn't drawn well enough for a regression, I wouldn't mark it. The "Y" isn't a problem when reusing the frame, just put the foundation in the match the marking or if it's blank I will put it in the right position for the bees to draw it that way. (this I'm still experimenting with)

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