Results 1 to 6 of 6
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
    Posts
    56

    Default Too many foundationless drones?

    I just removed a feeder from one of my two hives and inspected the frames of the top brood box while I was at it. I found one frame of worker brood and FIVE frames of drone brood.

    My hives, which were started from nucs last July, have a mixture of foundationless frames and frames with plastic foundation. The plan is to eventually have it all foundationless.

    The one frame of worker brood was on plastic foundation. The five drone brood frames were all foundationless.

    I realize foundationless frames produce more drones, but if the queen keeps this up, I'm going to have a brood box full of drones soon.

    Is this something I should be concerned about?

    I want to start up two foundationless hives from nucs this summer, but I'm having second thoughts if it means I'll get a hive full of drones. I live on the island of Newfoundland where the summer season doesn't last long, and as much I want my bees to thrive on foundationless frames, I want some honey too, honey that all those drones will be chowing down on.
    - Phillip
    @ Mud Songs

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
    Posts
    56

    Default Re: Too many foundationless drones?

    I've learning more about this top by searching the forum. Some good info here:

    http://www.beesource.com/forums/show...ch-drone-brood

    I have a feeling I'm going to get a lot of drones. I'm not sure how I feel about that yet.
    - Phillip
    @ Mud Songs

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,458

    Default Re: Too many foundationless drones?

    I would put the on the outside edges of the brood nest so they can fill them with honey or drones as they wish, but they won't be in the middle of the brood nest. If you get more than the outside two on each side then you can put them in the next box up. But with two deeps that would be eight frames of drone comb. They will probably only fill them all with drones once and then they will fill most of them with honey.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
    Posts
    56

    Default Re: Too many foundationless drones?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    I would put the on the outside edges of the brood nest so they can fill them with honey or drones as they wish... They will probably only fill them all with drones once and then they will fill most of them with honey.
    There seems to be a missing phrase in your response. "I would put the [blank] on the outside of the brood nest..." I assume you meant put the drone frames on the edge of the brood nest? And by brood nest, you don't mean the edge of the box, do you? (Because I've heard that too.)

    I've also read that placing an empty frame between frames of worker brood will produce another frame of worker brood. The basic hypothesis is that whatever an empty frame is surrounded by, that’s what the bees will build on the frame. Does that make sense?

    One other method I've read about to reduce drone comb in foundationless frames is to cut a pre-stamped piece of wax foundation as a starter strip to encourage worker-sized cells. Though I wonder if that'll produce a strip of worker cells and then drones underneath.

    I'll move the drone brood to the edges of the brood nest (away from the middle). Inserting single empty frames between frames of worker brood sounds like it might work too.

    I didn't realize going foundationless could be so tricky. My next trick is to start up two all-medium foundationless hives from nucs, which isn't easy because I can only get nucs on deep frames with plastic foundation.
    - Phillip
    @ Mud Songs

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,458

    Default Re: Too many foundationless drones?

    >There seems to be a missing phrase in your response. "I would put the [blank] on the outside of the brood nest..." I assume you meant put the drone frames on the edge of the brood nest? And by brood nest, you don't mean the edge of the box, do you? (Because I've heard that too.)

    Actually just an "m" as in "them" as in drone comb.

    >I've also read that placing an empty frame between frames of worker brood will produce another frame of worker brood.

    Only if they think they have enough drone comb.

    > The basic hypothesis is that whatever an empty frame is surrounded by, that’s what the bees will build on the frame. Does that make sense?

    It's not consistent with my experience. They often build one of all drone between two frames of workers because they just don't have much drone comb yet.

    >One other method I've read about to reduce drone comb in foundationless frames is to cut a pre-stamped piece of wax foundation as a starter strip to encourage worker-sized cells. Though I wonder if that'll produce a strip of worker cells and then drones underneath.

    They will make drones anywhere they can by whatever means they can until they meet their quota. Then they will build worker brood. They will not only build it between two worker combs, and not only build it from a small cell strip, they will tear down comb if they have to and rebuild it.

    >I'll move the drone brood to the edges of the brood nest (away from the middle). Inserting single empty frames between frames of worker brood sounds like it might work too.

    It will once they have enough drones.

    >I didn't realize going foundationless could be so tricky. My next trick is to start up two all-medium foundationless hives from nucs, which isn't easy because I can only get nucs on deep frames with plastic foundation.

    You really don't have to worry about it, but IF you're worried about it, move it to the outside. If you're not worried about it, the bees certainly won't be...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
    Posts
    56

    Default Re: Too many foundationless drones?

    So no matter what I do, the bees will build drone comb until they've met their quota. That's good enough for me. Now I know. Thanks Michael. I appreciate your response.
    - Phillip
    @ Mud Songs

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