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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
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    Madison County, Alabama
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    487

    Default Which is the better way to add bars to your TBH?

    My TBH is drawing out comb, and I've been adding bars (expanding my follower board each time).

    Is it best to add bars into the middle or to the end of the cluster? Which method makes them draw comb faster? Intuitively it seems to make sense to add bars into the middle of the cluster, but not sure.
    "...the most populous colonies ...are provided by queens ...in the year following their birth." Brother Adam

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Totnes, Devon, England
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    1,019

    Default Re: Which is the better way to add bars to your TBH?

    While they are expanding rapidly, I think it is best to simply add more bars ahead of them, so they maintain their desired nest shape. Once they start filling combs near the end with stores, it can be useful to add bars in between the brood area and the stores to prevent them becoming honey-bound, i.e. ensuring the queen always has somewhere to lay her eggs. If it looks like they need more brood-raising area in a hurry, it's OK to add a bar to the other end, as they will fill any spaces with bees to keep the heat in - and it gives the drones something to do in between meals.
    The Barefoot Beekeeper http://www.biobees.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
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    Madison County, Alabama
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    487

    Default Re: Which is the better way to add bars to your TBH?

    Quote Originally Posted by buckbee View Post
    While they are expanding rapidly, I think it is best to simply add more bars ahead of them, so they maintain their desired nest shape. Once they start filling combs near the end with stores, it can be useful to add bars in between the brood area and the stores to prevent them becoming honey-bound
    I should have elaborated with more info. I have 13 bars of about 36 (it's a 48 inch TBH) fully drawn now. The bees were installed on April 10th.

    Should the broodnest (with end combs of honey) be suffiecient now to add bars between the brood area?

    P.S. Are you Mr. Chandler? I really enjoyed reading your book, "The Barefoot Beekeeper". Best piece of prose to come out of your country since Chaucer--actually that's not true, maybe best piece since R.O.B. Manley's "Honey Farming."
    "...the most populous colonies ...are provided by queens ...in the year following their birth." Brother Adam

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Totnes, Devon, England
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    1,019

    Default Re: Which is the better way to add bars to your TBH?

    Quote Originally Posted by fatscher View Post
    Should the broodnest (with end combs of honey) be suffiecient now to add bars between the brood area?
    Yes, assuming you have plenty of bees in there!

    P.S. Are you Mr. Chandler? I really enjoyed reading your book, "The Barefoot Beekeeper". Best piece of prose to come out of your country since Chaucer--actually that's not true, maybe best piece since R.O.B. Manley's "Honey Farming."
    I am, and thank you, but I'm sure I don't remotely bear comparison to Chaucer! Manley, maybe, on a good day... and I really enjoy reading him - fine, practical beekeeper - and a good writer, too.
    The Barefoot Beekeeper http://www.biobees.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Dalkeith, Ont, Canada
    Posts
    206

    Default Re: Which is the better way to add bars to your TBH?

    I personally would avoid adding bars to the center of a broodnest unless forced to eg. honey bound or transitioning out old comb, they tend to build the broodnest in a pattern. Lol I didn't realise buckbee was Mr. Chandler until he started talking about his book Which by the way I also enjoyed.
    My blog @ Bee Crazy

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Madison County, Alabama
    Posts
    487

    Default Re: Which is the better way to add bars to your TBH?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam-Smith View Post
    I personally would avoid adding bars to the center of a broodnest unless forced to eg. honey bound or transitioning out old comb, they tend to build the broodnest in a pattern.
    I'm admittedly impatient on this area. Our nectar flow will completely shut off here in about 3 weeks, and I'm trying to spur the process on by forcing something on the bees that is <ahem> a little unnatural so there'll be fewer problems (like food storage) later on, when we hit our nectar droughts.
    "...the most populous colonies ...are provided by queens ...in the year following their birth." Brother Adam

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,914

    Default Re: Which is the better way to add bars to your TBH?

    You should always have ALL the bars in your TBH. What happens if they get into that part of the hive? I never have less than a full complement...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    nelsonville, ohio
    Posts
    383

    Default Re: Which is the better way to add bars to your TBH?

    or you can do away with the follower boards and let the bees build the nest thay want.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Dalkeith, Ont, Canada
    Posts
    206

    Default Re: Which is the better way to add bars to your TBH?

    Follower boards are nice to have if you are installing bees when it might be cold or they are small, splits ect. You need to keep ahead of the bees bar wise with them though.
    My blog @ Bee Crazy

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