Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 28
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Whidbey Island, WA, USA
    Posts
    182
    Man, how come the girls don't do what I want???? So I read the article on Housel Positioning and think "OK, I can try to follow this." So on my newly installed package with 11 frames. I marked the middle frame "center" and the other frames all with arrows pointing in to the center frame so I would never reverse the sides by accident. Toot sweet. I'm so clever.

    Did my first inspection today. So what do the girls do? They DO NOT start drawing out the center frame as I had anticipated (perhaps I shoulda installed neon direction signs) but they seem to be all clustered to one side of the hive box and drawing out the coomb on that one side. Jeez, now I'm gonna havta inspect the frames manually and figure out their Housel Positioning. The center of the hive is no longer the center of the hive box. Any thoughts on the matter?

    Oh, also lucked out on the inspection. I forgot that I can't tip the frame now that I've gone foundationless and with no wires. The whole coomb swung out to the side but do not break off the top bar. I tipped it back upright carefully and put it back in the hive. Whew.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,742

    Post

    >Man, how come the girls don't do what I want???? So I read the article on Housel Positioning and think "OK, I can try to follow this." So on my newly installed package with 11 frames. I marked the middle frame "center" and the other frames all with arrows pointing in to the center frame so I would never reverse the sides by accident. Toot sweet. I'm so clever.

    Is there foundation in it?

    >Did my first inspection today. So what do the girls do? They DO NOT start drawing out the center frame as I had anticipated (perhaps I shoulda installed neon direction signs) but they seem to be all clustered to one side of the hive box and drawing out the coomb on that one side.

    Sounds normal.

    >Jeez, now I'm gonna havta inspect the frames manually and figure out their Housel Positioning.

    Good luck. From my experience I'll bet you can find the primary comb by the sideways "Y" and the vertical row of cells in the comb, but the rest I can never see the pattern.

    >The center of the hive is no longer the center of the hive box. Any thoughts on the matter?

    Why not just let them do what they want? That was the whole point of Housel positioning anyway.

    >Oh, also lucked out on the inspection. I forgot that I can't tip the frame now that I've gone foundationless and with no wires. The whole coomb swung out to the side but do not break off the top bar. I tipped it back upright carefully and put it back in the hive. Whew.

    New comb is REALLY soft and, of course, you can't turn them flat ways. [img]smile.gif[/img]
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Whidbey Island, WA, USA
    Posts
    182

    Post

    Of course, I'll just let them do what they want THIS year. My frames are triangle cut guides under the top bars with no foundations. Consequently, all 11 frames were similar. My analysis was that knowing the correct position would be important in future years if I ever moved the frames around (like drawing the bees up into the supers by checkerboarding, etc.) It seems that now, I need to find the center of the hive with the double "Y" and see if the "outer" frames then follow the Housel Positioning and mark them appropriately. Would it have made any difference if I had thrown in a frame of drawn coomb into the "center" position. The reason I didn't is because all I had was large cell.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Whidbey Island, WA, USA
    Posts
    182

    Post

    Come to think of it, all I need to find is the "center" frame. As the hive gets stronger, I can take frames from the plentiful side of the box and move them around to the crouded side of the box, and, in effect, move the center of the hive closer to the center of the box. Might make them less likely to swarm if they have max room from the center of the hive out to the edges of the box. Man, trying to impose human thoughts into a bee brain again.

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

    Post

    >The center of the hive is no longer the center of
    > the hive box. Any thoughts on the matter?

    You may find that the bees are drawing comb
    closer to the "warmest" side of the box, the
    one more southwesterly. Bees need some fairly
    warm temps to draw comb.

    But not to worry...
    If you have enough imagination to think that
    "Housel Positioning" exists at all, then you
    can surely pretend that the bees are drawing out
    the "center" of their hive just a bit off center.

    Most of us shuffle comb like Las Vegas dealers,
    only paying attention to current broodnest
    position, and facing frames of open brood.

    Don't worry about the comb until it is drawn.
    How are the bees doing? OK, I hope.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Erin, NY /Florence SC
    Posts
    3,361

    Post

    My question is if you are running 10 frames, which you should if you're drawing comb, which one is the center frame? Oh 11 frames, Housel positioning. Now I still don't understand!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,742

    Post

    The "concept" of Housel positioning is to try to emulate natural comb when using foundation. You're not using foundation. You don't need to emulate natural comb. It IS natural comb. I would simply number them or draw a diaganol across the top bars or whatever so you can get them back where they came from when you work the hive and leave them all where the bees put them in the first place. They will fit better anway in their original position because there are always some ins and outs in the comb. And it won't disrupt the organization of the brood nest.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Whidbey Island, WA, USA
    Posts
    182

    Post

    My understanding was that the Housel Positioning found that feral bees draw the coomb using different patterns depending on the position of the face of the coomb in the hive. That is, the pattern on the side of the frame away from the center of the hive is different from the pattern on the same frame but on the side towards the center of the hive. If we, as beekeepers, haphazardly shuffle the frames, we may be disrupting the natural system set up by the bees if we reverse the faces of the frames after they have been drawn out. The downside risk? We could be arguing that all day (week, month, year).

    While this may all be theory, it doesn't cost me anything to play with the concept and it certainly doesn't hurt my bees at all. I only have three hives and I started only last year. In other words, trying to follow Housel Positioning doesn't prevent me from doing something beneficial for the bees. It just means that I mark the frames so when I inspect them, I put the frames back the way they came out. Also, when I pull frames for other uses, I make sure the frames sides are correctly orientated.

    Jim, the bees are doing fine. I have a big black ant problem with one and cinnamon didn't work because these aren't the type of ants that follow a single line. I'm currently trying to create an oil moat around the legs of the hive stand. First attempt didn't work because the ants were able to straddle the edge of the oil cup and one of the legs. (I watch the little buggers reach out and straddle the gap.) So I'm going back in tomorrow with larger cups to put the oil in.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    North Alabama, SW Kentucky
    Posts
    1,914

    Post

    OldScout,
    In reading the one article on Housel Positioning, what I got from it was that it was to mimic the arrangement of combs constructed by wild bees as they build under a tree branch. ... Inward cells designed to provide a "shelf" for the larvae and outter cells designed to 'shed' the elements. If your bees are in a hive, they don't have the worry of the elements, so perhaps they have other preferences that guide their actions.
    Just something to consider.
    WayaCoyote

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Whidbey Island, WA, USA
    Posts
    182

    Post

    You're right. When I first read the article, I didn't pick up the location of the hive under study.

    "If your bees are in a hive, they don't have the worry of the elements, so perhaps they have other preferences that guide their actions."

    Good point. However, by following the system the bees use (no matter what that system or preferences may be), at least I will not be hurting their progress if I replace the frames in the same order they came out, and I MIGHT be hurting their progress if I reverse their frames either by accident or on purpose.

    Has anyone done any additional studies, articles, or observations of the "Housel Positioning?"

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Erin, NY /Florence SC
    Posts
    3,361

    Post

    Michael, thanks for the info on Housel Positioning, I had not encountered that subject previous to this post. I know I've read posts where you mentioned running 11 Frames. Is this specific to top bar hive management or are you also doing this in Langstroth Hives and if so what are the advantages?

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Milford, MI
    Posts
    328

    Post

    Since stumbling upon Housel's studies and observations more than a year ago, I decided to put his theory into practice in one of our apiaries to see for myself if it makes a diffirence. My main concern was to try to eliminate the tendency to cross comb new foundation. I'm running all Langstroth hives with Small Cell "Plastic" Foundation, some full sheets of foundation, some starter strips, and some foundationless.

    As some of you know, I have applied decals to the top bars as to indicate the orientation of the foundation of each frame. That way I can orient the frames in the brood nest at a glance. Here is a pic of the top bars of the 5th and 6th frame... Housel Position Frame Indicators
    Some of you have asked as to what to do if the cluster of a new package shifts towards one side of the box. I reposition the cluster towards the center of the box and arrange the frames again maintaining the "Housel" positioning. I'm not sure if it is dumb luck or if Housel's theory really makes a diffirence, but I have had a lot less problems regressing large cell bees on Small Cell Plastic Foundation.

    Since it seemed to make a diffirence in the one yard I first went through last year, I have used Housel Positioning on every new frame of foundation that I insert in a brood nest, and every box that I install a new package in.

    I'm not sure that my work can be considered an official study, but I have done my share of observing.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,742

    Post

    >Michael, thanks for the info on Housel Positioning, I had not encountered that subject previous to this post.

    http://www.beesource.com/pov/lusby/housel.htm

    >I know I've read posts where you mentioned running 11 Frames. Is this specific to top bar hive management or are you also doing this in Langstroth Hives and if so what are the advantages?

    A standard Langstroth hive with Hoffman frames are spaced 1 3/8" on center.

    I run 33 bars in my top bar hives, not 11. But then are 48 3/4" long. The brood nest bars are 1 1/4" wide and the honey area is 1 1/2" bars.

    I only run 11 frames in 10 frame Langstroth boxes. I run 9 frames in 8 frame Langstroth boxes.

    The advantages are:

    1) 1 1/4" is the spacing that bees build on their own for a brood nest when I let them, so it's the spacing they wanted anyway.

    2) Natural spacing encourages natural cell size. With 1 1/4" spacing I get sections as small as 4.6mm cells in the brood nest.

    3) More brood frames in a brood nest. When using 9 frames in an eight frame box I have as many frames of brood as the people running 9 frames of brood in a ten frame box.

    4) Less of the funny in between combs etc. becuase there is less room to play between the combs.

    IMO The only disadvantages are that standard frames aren't built that way and the space between the top bars ends up a bit small (3/16") unless you also cut the width of the top bar down just a thirty secondth of an inch on each side.

    Of course you can space them out more after they are drawn.

    Joe Waggle came up with a system to get the 1 1/4" spacing during the comb drawing process and then use them as usual the rest of the time.

    Check the pictures and look for "Waggle positioning" on http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Organicbeekeepers
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  14. #14

    Post

    Here's a link to a Waggle-positioning photo:
    http://tinyurl.com/denca

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Syracuse, NY (upstate)
    Posts
    247

    Post

    Hey Phoenix:

    Nice decals showing frame orientation! I was curious where you obtained them or how you made them. The technique I developed last year is as follows...

    I use the letter "V" with the V representing the top part of the Y. Therefore the bottom of the V always pionts to the outside of the hive (5 frames left and 5 frames right). You may wonder why I use a V instead of a Y?

    1) It's simpler to make a V (two slashes)
    2) It can be much larger than a Y on the top bar making it much easier to see once the frame gets propolized and comb covered.
    3) Easier to mark plastic frames (see below)

    Marking Frames:

    Wooden frames: I use a pencil or lumber crayon to make the "V" toward each end of the top bar (above where the side bars intersect).

    Plastic Frames (Pierco): I use a wood burning tool like the kind to do crafts. I have a tip that is just a flat strip about 3/8" wide. With just two strokes it makes perfect V's in the black plastic frames that are highly visable. I imagine you could make a Y, but it would be extra work and hard to see in my opinion.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Salem, Oregon
    Posts
    457

    Post

    All of the links I've found to pics on Waggle positioning bring up a login in for Yahoo. I'm really not interested in getting a Yahoo account, even if it is free. Are there pictures anywhere else?

    Another question, is naturebee Waggle?

    Thanks,

    Pugs

  17. #17
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Milford, MI
    Posts
    328

    Post

    Hey Phoenix:

    Nice decals showing frame orientation! I was curious where you obtained them or how you made them.
    I am self employed as a sign maker, and we make custom decals such as these.

    A few beekeepers have requested decals of diffirent colors such as those that coincide with the queen colors, that way they can rotate their comb and cull older comb according to the age indicated by the colors.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    The Scenic Flint Hills , KS
    Posts
    5,159

    Post

    I arrange all my frames with Voodoo Positioning, then I do a little Raindance afterward just for good measure.
    Bullseye Bill in The Scenic Flint Hills , KS
    www.myspace.com/dukewilliam

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Casper, WY
    Posts
    526

    Post

    Hi Guys,
    One group of beekeepers arranges the combs this way, another arranges them another way and most just do the Las Vegas shuffle.

    I've looked for Housel positioning in my tbh's natural comb and haven't been able to find it, even when I keep track of the individual combs.

    And I've shuffled the comb in my tbhs with disasterous results.

    How about you guys? This is biological beekeeping. What do your bees do? What do you see?

    Regards
    Dennis
    Knowing you can get just about anyone to eat just about anything as long as it's seasoned with enough praise:&gt

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    The Scenic Flint Hills , KS
    Posts
    5,159

    Post

    >How about you guys? This is biological beekeeping. What do your bees do? What do you see?

    OK, I'll step up. I use Permacomb almost exclusivly, both sides are the same. I have no idea how the manufacturer accomplished that. My bees are 'centered' no matter where they are in the hive. In the past, Michael and I have likened it to the Star Trek episode where whenever they walked through a doorway they ended up in the same room.
    Bullseye Bill in The Scenic Flint Hills , KS
    www.myspace.com/dukewilliam

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads