Page 7 of 15 FirstFirst ... 56789 ... LastLast
Results 121 to 140 of 298

Thread: Checkerboarding

  1. #121
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Ballina, NSW - Australia
    Posts
    227

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    I wish someone would makea video of it and stick it on youtube - Am still none the wiser on what this is all about!!!

  2. #122
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Corryton, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    578

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    It's all about ensuring that the brood chamber has room to expand upward into without completely separating contact between the brood chamber and honey stores.
    Last edited by Barry; 11-03-2011 at 10:49 AM. Reason: quoting

  3. #123
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Eau Claire, Wisconsin, USA
    Posts
    33

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    This is a great discussion and I have enjoyed reading most of the posts. It seems to me that the goal of CB or reversals is to remove the honey dome above the brood nest so the queen does not feel like she is running out of space. This might be a little simplistic, but that appears to be the intended purpose of both management styles.

    Since the goal is to open up the brood area, do you still use a queen excluder?

  4. #124
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Tulsa, OK
    Posts
    3,405

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    If you checkerboard, you do not use an excluder.

  5. #125
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Edgefield County, South Carolina
    Posts
    646

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    I have tried to CB the hives I could for the past two years.

    I really don't care what kind of swarms you call them --- Repo--- cut-off etc.

    As already pointed out --- I believe alot of material in beekeeping books is someones opinion or observation, or for that matter alot posted on forums is a matter of opinion.

    With that said CB has worked for me. Thanks again Walt for your perceived arrogance or confidence as I would like to call it.

    I just wish they would start a pinned section on
    Checkerboarding for those who would like to learn about it and ask questions without the NAYSAYERS. With the questions directed straight to you.

    Don't get me wrong the learning discussion is great. And I like to hear others ways of achieving the same thing.

    I do get a little confused sometimes when I read the CB articles. Probably my fault, but I do know from reading Walt's new post, some of the articles have had updated observations since initial print (my reading of the POV is also not current --- I don't visit Beesource as often as I once did). I some times get the chronological order of the articles scrambled in my head that may also be a problem or maybe it's just my head thing

    I Just think (WISH) an area dedicated just to CB would be started for those that want to learn about it or have had success with it.

    Thanks again Walt. I'll save the bickering for others and just harvest my increased honey yields from the system you have been so kind to share, Even if others do feel it is the same wheel reinvented with a new name

    Steve Seigler
    Edgefield SC
    Last edited by sc-bee; 01-02-2010 at 04:08 AM.
    sc-bee

  6. #126
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Elkton, Giles, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    1,311

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    Steve:
    Thanks for the post. You were already on my list of supporters from our past communications.
    Others:
    Would like to resurrect this thread before it slides off into Barry's barn full of giga chips. Been away for awhile, but have some time this month to address the areas of friction in the forgoing. I understand the friction and have no grudge against those who react with normal human responses. But some of those responses need an explanation. And I concede that I gave Mr. Palmer some short answers. My lack of keyboard skills are a problem if a long discussion is required. Expect them piecemeal through the remainder of the winter.
    Walt

  7. #127
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Lincolnton, NC
    Posts
    1,099

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    I don't know enough yet to ask intelligent questions, but I am very much looking forward to more discussion.

  8. #128
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Menomonee Falls, Wis.
    Posts
    2,618

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    Walt, I would love to respectfully discuss your system vs. a single deep , with deep supers, system; but I am not sure this is the right venue. I can comprehend the value of your system, however I question if it is the MOST economical for some one in a commercial northern environment.

    Rolandi

  9. #129
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Tulsa, OK
    Posts
    3,405

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    Roland,

    Don't wish to step on Walt's toes, but here's what I think:

    All beekeeping is local, and you are probably right that something different than Walt suggests may work better up north.

    In fact, BWrangler on here (Dennis Murrell) posted a link about an alternative checkerboarding system he uses in Wyoming that does use all deeps. I think that it is on this thread.

    Walt has developed a specific system, but it is the underlying ideas that matter. The execution is pretty flexible. You can do it like Walt does exactly, or you can do it will all mediums or all deeps.

    Neil

    Edit: Here's the link again: http://bwrangler.wordpress.com/stuff/checker-boarding/
    Last edited by NeilV; 01-18-2010 at 08:25 PM. Reason: Add link

  10. #130
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Elkton, Giles, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    1,311

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    Neil is correct. Colleen, on an island off Seattle wintered in triple deeps. She bought the manuscript when it was first offered and wanted to know how to apply the concepts to her config. Recommended she CB the bottom empty with the top honey. Have a picture of her 3 steps up on a stepladder to super the hive. She's a strong supporter, and promotes the concepts in the Seattle area.

    It is difficult to apply the concepts to the double deep without a third deep. About as close as you can come is reverse deeps and add a super of drawn comb at the same time. In my area, where the upper deep is typically filled with honey in late winter and the brood nest is in the bottom box, reversal is not practical. You want the overhead honey to expand into. If you wait until the brood nest expands into the upper, then reverse, the brood nest is separated by the remaining capped honey reserve. It takes some time for the colony to recover from the disruption, but they will eventually convert the remaining capped honey to brood by consumption - uniting the separated brood volumes. I take a dim view of any process that slows down colony development. More bees make more honey.

    Note that in the above reversal most of the brood is in the lower deep. When raised, the excess cluster bees that gather above to cap or limit heat rise, will spill over into a super of drawn comb, if added at the same time. They can't stand empty comb underfoot. They will start filling the empty comb within the cluster with nectar on a priority basis. Overhead storage of nectar is a key ingredient of swarm prevention.

    In more northerly areas where the cluster is located in the top deep and the lower is basically empty, reversal works a little differently. When the empty is raised, those excess cluster bees that were squashed against the top of the hive now are free to form their normal domed cluster shape, enfolding a large voume of empty cells, on multiple frames. The same urgency applies to filling those cells with nectar. But they will replace that nectar with brood quite quickly. A large dome of brood appears between inspections. While this appears to be a spurt in brood voume, it's difficult to guess how much the cramped quarters earlier slowed development. The "spurt" may be just compensation for the earlier restriction.

    Mr. Palmer's approach is unique. With cluster in the top deep, he adds a super of drawn comb early. Gets them storing overhead, then later reverses the deeps. I really wanted to meet with him to understand the timing with respect to field forage. Even shopped for tire chains in the mountainous ragions of VA. When he said "blizzard", I cancelled out. They close highways in blizzards - wasn't prepared for being turned back. Still don't know if he has any problems with separating the overhead nectar from the box of brood by inserting the empty in between. Seems like timing and field forage availability would be critical.

    Enough for tonight,
    Walt

  11. #131
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Anderson County, Texas
    Posts
    1,254

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    I guess I will weigh in on this issue somewhat.

    First: I kept bees from the late 70's through the late 80's running midnites (caucasions) and usually requeening all my colonies late summer early fall (August/September) time period here. My queens were marked and so at the time believed I had a handle on the swarming problem and don't think I ever remember a swarm save 1. But caucasions are not bad about swarming.

    Second: I ran two deeps brood boxes (same as Michael Palmer appears to) then, but intend to run three mediums now. After brood rearing started in earnest here (early to mid February), I would reverse the boxes and scrap the honey cap in the upper box before reversing the brood boxes, under the theory that the bees would move the honey up and use most of it on the way. Seemed to work for me. To me swarming was never a problem, but rather maximum populations were, as our main flow here runs from mid April to late May/earlyJune. I have to say that I am rather surprised at the evidently recurring swarming issue that continuously appears in threads; however, I suppose I might experience the same in this new environement. My vertical two queened colonies produced a bunch more honey but was a lot more work. I will be trying a different management technique this year which I may share in a thread when I have more time.

    Third: I am in the South (central part of east Texas), so I assume Walt's bees and my bees would work the same. I would try to go into winter with a deep (upper brood box) full of capped honey and a nice cap on the lower box. My experience was that the winter cluster was usually centered in the middle 5-6 frames and moved upwards into the upper honey supply before brood rearing started in full swing. However, the bees seemed to move past the outer honey stores leaving them behind, which I would also scrap and deal with when reversing brood boxes. I haven't read Walts theories on the drawbacks of double deeps (although I will if/when I get the time), but two deep brood boxes seemed to work just fine for me. My reason for going to mediums is interchangability of boxes and not brood rearing problems in deeps.

    Fourth: I am not such an old dog that I won't learn a new trick. Therefore once I get my 3 medium configuration I will make a comparison between the normal brood box reversal vs. checkerboarding; although I must say reversing brood boxes always worked just fine for me.

    kindest regards
    DRU
    "I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country." Nathan Hale, 1776

  12. #132
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Elkton, Giles, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    1,311

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    DRUR:
    You posted a minute after I did.

    I like your scheme. By scrap(e), I assume you mean uncap. Have seen nothing in the literature that would lead me into that approach. Why didn't I think of that?? Original with you??

    As this thread rolls along, we may find other ways to skin this cat.

    If reversal/uncapping of honey produces upscale of the equivalent 2 and a half deeps of brood, we can conclude that the approaches are equivalent.

    Walt

  13. #133
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Tulsa, OK
    Posts
    3,405

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    DRUR,

    I have one all medium hive. On that one, I have figured out that overwintering on four mediums is best for checkerboarding. They don't fill up the fourth medium for winter but put some in there. By spring, I have enough empty comb in the top two boxes that I can checkerboard what's on the hive already from the top two boxes. Then I add a medium of drawn comb on top. I do this around the last week of Feb/1st week of March, as weather allows.

    On this configuration, the bottom box is mostly full of stored pollen.

    You end up with a really big hive for March 1. However, by mid-April things are just booming, assuming no other problems with the hive.

  14. #134
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Anderson County, Texas
    Posts
    1,254

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    Quote Originally Posted by NeilV View Post
    DRUR,
    You end up with a really big hive for March 1. However, by mid-April things are just booming, assuming no other problems with the hive.
    NeilV: Thanks for sharing.

    Quote Originally Posted by wcubed View Post
    DRUR:
    You posted a minute after I did.
    Yes I noticed that, only one minute later so I was not aware of your last post although I have spent time reading through the whole thread which took me some time.

    Quote Originally Posted by wcubed View Post
    DRUR:By scrap(e), I assume you mean uncap.
    Yes and thanks for the spelling correction


    Quote Originally Posted by wcubed View Post
    DRUR:Have seen nothing in the literature that would lead me into that approach. Original with you??
    I don't know, after a while you do things that you forget where they come from. Could have been some of my experimenting buddies Mark Hamilton or Buckshot Johnston or from the beekeeping club I was in back then.

    have to go wife calling me to lunch.
    Last edited by DRUR; 01-19-2010 at 12:44 PM. Reason: Answer scrape question.
    "I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country." Nathan Hale, 1776

  15. #135
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Berkeley,California, USA
    Posts
    483

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    Walt,

    I'm happy to see that you have reviced this thread and I have an old question for you that I never saw an answer to:

    I've been reading through various of your articles on Checkerboarding, including the May 2006 article from Bee Culture.

    In that article, you state that: "The CB/NM colonies requeen themselves on an annual basis, and its free. "

    Maybe I missed something, in which case I apologize, but could you please explain why checkerboarding casues supersedure and/or point to any of your articles that makes that relationship clear?

    thanks in advance,

    -fafrd

    p.s. I obviously would welcome input from anyone else besides Walt that knows the answer to this question as well...

  16. #136
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hudson, WI USA
    Posts
    2,172

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    fafrd, responding to your invite. I recall reading, I believe in Walt's article somewhere, that the system promotes supercedure because the queen's pheromone is spread so thin over such a large number of bees. Adrian.

  17. #137
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Plant City, Florida
    Posts
    175

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    Walt,
    Just started reading about checkerboarding, I often thought of the spring swarms as a impulse driven by the longer days in addition to other factors ( many other animals and insects use day length as a trigger for behavior ) , I am in central Florida and run a deep and a medium is there a way checkerboarding can fit into my operation?
    Bob

  18. #138
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Berkeley,California, USA
    Posts
    483

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    Adrian,

    thanks for your response. Why would checkerboarding spread the queens pheramone out any more than the equivalent numbers of supers with full frames and empty frames?

    -fafrd

  19. #139
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Elkton, Giles, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    1,311

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    fafrd:
    Adrian must have me confused with someone else. I not only didn't say that, I don't believe that queen scent is involved in any way. The PhDs are locked in to Q scent as the "cause" of swarming. Just not true. Mother Nature is not going to let something as critical as reproduction depend on chance. Treated somewhere in the articles. Our bees have an orderly progression through specific steps to generate a repro swarm without endangering survival of the parent colony. Complex, but not unintelligible.

    Re Supersedure (SS)
    Quick answer: I don't know. But will offer some speculation based on timing in the early season bee schedule.
    The second year colony will SS promptly at repro c/o. That's the peak of brood nest expansion and season maximum brood volume. The more established colony will SS within the next few weeks of that timing. These notes pertain to colonies that are CBed.

    Nobody knows what the criteria is that the colony uses to judge performance of their queen. But they are good at it. Often, the colony invokes SS and we see no reason for it. Trust them - they have criteria that we can only guess about.

    CB creats much larger brood volumes than standard management. The Q is pushed to lay at higher rates than literature levels. Like half again or double. Depending on whose numbers you use.

    My guess is that the CBed colony senses the strain on their Q in keeping up with the increased demand and elects to SS.

    A relevant story. Am I not the "story" man?
    A gentleman retired and came home with his 100 plus colonies to a road I travel sometimes. Seeing a batch of colonies suddenly appear, stopped in to meet him. Each time I stopped in (already into CBing) when I told him what I was doing at the time, he would launch into a lecture on what I should be doing based on literature conventional wisdom.

    One spring, in the swarming season, mentioned my bees were superseding.
    He came apart with a laughing fit. He actually thought I was seeing swarm cells, and didn't know any better. When he recovered his composure, I challanged him to go with me to an outyard and see for himself. It was either agree to go or get worked over on the spot. He went.

    I actually had not seen any SS cells at the time, but it was time on the bee/tree schedule for it to be happening. (Some of that confidence thing) We opened four hives, and two had SS cells in work. On the way back he said "looked like swarm cells to me." Hopeless. Why am wasting my time on this expert beekeeper?

    Have a ton of these stories, but will try to keep it to a minimum.

    Walt

  20. #140
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Berkeley,California, USA
    Posts
    483

    Default Re: Checkerboarding

    Thanks for the reply, Walt.

    So to summarize, you believe that the bees have a natural instinct to SS under certain running conditions, such as the queen not being able to keep up with the egg-laying demands of the hive. Since you believe that the hive managed with CBing has a significantly greater brood volume than that using standard management techniques, CBing appears to lead to increased SS.

    That makes sense. I guess the only other question I would have is why the brood volume of the CBed hive is so much greater than for standard management techniques (than box reversal, for example)? I thought the brood frames were not CBed, only the honey and empty frames.

    -fafrd

    p.s. your story also brings up the question of how common it is for any hive to SS and for the SS to be mistaken for a swarm cell - is there an easy and reliable way to tell the difference?

Page 7 of 15 FirstFirst ... 56789 ... LastLast

Tags for this Thread

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