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  1. #301
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    6,145

    Default Re: Small Cell Studies

    Hi DeKnow, well I see your post 294 is addressed entirely to me again. There are other people in the discussion also.

    The only comment I'd make on what you've asked me is that the Seeley study is not the only study, and other methods have been used in other studies, the result has been the same though. But since you seem to be talking to me in particular, my position is I'm not a defender, or an attacker, of these study / studies. I'm neutral, I'm happy to learn from them, whatever may be learned. And regardless of this or that method used, and wether we say this study was wrong here and this study was wrong there, results are similar.

    I think it's because that magic thing, whatever it is that happens or doesn't happen, in the hives of successful small cellers, but not in the hives of the failed small cellers, has not been isolated yet.

    But hey, first things first. I pm'ed you my address for the book, but have not heard anything back yet.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  2. #302
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Hamilton, Alabama
    Posts
    1,232

    Default Re: Small Cell Studies

    Roland, Mellifera is no more and no less adapted to small cell than Ligustica. All of them have been affected by 100 years of beekeepers using large cell and selection for larger bees. The result is that most bees have the wrong size yard stick to use when measuring cells as they build comb. Did you know honeybees use their forelegs as calipers to size cells? One caveat is that if you are using Mellifera obtained from feral colonies, you might indeed get better comb building on small cell since they tend to have a much greater range of size than selected stock from queen breeders.

    One of my early observations was that a colony that is adapted to small cell really does have smaller bees. I have a control colony from small cell stock that is currently on large cell combs. They still produce small bees and you don't have to do more than just look at them to know they are small. The difference is most visible just after a new bee has emerged.

    This is why I suspect that small cell comb selects for smaller bees that have shorter development time and therefore biases the colony toward less efficient reproduction by varroa mites.

    DarJones
    DarJones - 45 years, 10 colonies (max 40), sideliner, treatment free since 2005, 11 frame broodnest, small cell

  3. #303
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,113

    Default Re: Small Cell Studies

    You put small cell bees onto large cells? Surely Alastair will want to hear all about this!!!
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  4. #304
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
    Posts
    9,658

    Default Re: Small Cell Studies

    I find it's more complicated than this. I can easily see smaller bees seasonly. Fall and early spring you will see a size difference in the bees. However, once brood rearing gets well underway and nectar starts coming in, you will not see any difference in bee sizes, even tho brood is still being reared in those small cells. Yet it's said that bees will not change in thorax size from pre emergence to post uncapping.

    Interesting that you say: "The difference is most visible just after a new bee has emerged."
    Regards, Barry

  5. #305
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    6,145

    Default Re: Small Cell Studies

    From my limited experience, I've noticed the same thing.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  6. #306
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    6,145

    Default Re: Small Cell Studies

    Quote Originally Posted by Solomon Parker View Post
    You put small cell bees onto large cells? Surely Alastair will want to hear all about this!!!
    It's something that's been discussed in the past. I'm not going to put sc bees on lc, but rather I'll let sc bees build natural comb to see what size the worker cells turn out in my area after the bees have regressed from small cell a few times. But it's just a purely academic investigation, not really much practicle value to it.

    But first I need bees that are truely regressed to small cell, my oldest sc hive is not a year old yet so the NC experiment will have to wait probably a couple of years.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  7. #307
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Millbury, MA, USA
    Posts
    1,931

    Default Re: Small Cell Studies

    I run PF-100's and foundationless interspersed in many of my hives. I see different size workers throughout the year. The foundationless tend to have smaller cells in the center of the frame and they get larger moving out from the center.

  8. #308
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Menomonee Falls, Wis.
    Posts
    2,812

    Default Re: Small Cell Studies

    Fusion-power wrote:

    One caveat is that if you are using Mellifera obtained from feral colonies, you might indeed get better comb building on small cell since they tend to have a much greater range of size than selected stock from queen breeders.

    Touche!

    This is why I suspect that small cell comb selects for smaller bees that have shorter development time and therefore biases the colony toward less efficient reproduction by varroa mites.

    And again!!!m Ouch!!! hit hit it on the nose.

    Is 14 days from a swarm landing to a queen cell hatching fast?

    Crazy Roland

  9. #309
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Worcester County, Massachusetts
    Posts
    3,752

    Default Re: Small Cell Studies

    Quote Originally Posted by camero7 View Post
    I run PF-100's and foundationless interspersed in many of my hives. I see different size workers throughout the year. The foundationless tend to have smaller cells in the center of the frame and they get larger moving out from the center.
    Cam, don't forget that since the PF frames are rather "fixed" in cell size, virtually all drones (and "honey storage" cells) are on the foundationless frames. Root noted that on frames with non-uniform cells, that the cells tend to be a bit bigger...and this is amplified by the fact that virtually all of the non uniform cells are concentrated on (half?) the frames....doubling the effect? Increasing it exponentially?

    deknow

  10. #310
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Worcester County, Massachusetts
    Posts
    3,752

    Default Re: Small Cell Studies

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    Hi DeKnow, well I see your post 294 is addressed entirely to me again. There are other people in the discussion also.
    No, the post was not addressed "entirely" to you. You are an example of what someone that is actually interested in learning about something does....ask those with experience. Seeley wasted two years because he didn't. Aren't you glad you didn't pay for two years work trying to draw SC comb in honey supers? I certainly wish the USDA hadn't.

    "Results" from flawed assumptions, procedures, and studies are worthless unless those assumptions, procedures and studies are examined and evaluated....a lack of willingness to do so is your business. If the "only comment" you can make on my critique of the Seeley study is that there are other studies, then I think I've made my point...it's almost worthless. Are the other researchers less prone to errors than Seeley? Should we not examine them as well to see what was done?

    We were sold out of books, but more came in yesterday...I will certainly send one to you. I'm not sure what you expected to hear from me..

    deknow

  11. #311
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Millbury, MA, USA
    Posts
    1,931

    Default Re: Small Cell Studies

    Quote Originally Posted by deknow View Post
    Cam, don't forget that since the PF frames are rather "fixed" in cell size, virtually all drones (and "honey storage" cells) are on the foundationless frames. Root noted that on frames with non-uniform cells, that the cells tend to be a bit bigger...and this is amplified by the fact that virtually all of the non uniform cells are concentrated on (half?) the frames....doubling the effect? Increasing it exponentially?

    deknow
    I agree. However, I do have several PF-100's that are full of honey. The end PF-100 in the box almost always is full of honey with a few drone cells.

  12. #312
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Santa Fe, NM
    Posts
    713

    Default Re: Small Cell Studies

    I for one am at this point cancelling my subscriptions to Bee Culture and ABJ. Barry, this thread is infinitely more rewarding (and entertaining) than staring at the same old advertisements month after month. So thanks for providing the medium to allow such communication to take place. One variable I have not seen mentioned is geographic location and climate, as it relates to mite counts in general. I have been informed (Randy Oliver) that mite counts here in northern New Mexico are extremely low for one reason or another. Now please don’t all load up the trucks and consider moving your bees here. Besides, we’re in the desert and everyone knows you can’t make much honey in the desert anyways so. Lusby is also in the desert, even more so than me.
    "Tradition becomes our security, and when the mind is secure it is in decay".....Krishnamurti

  13. #313
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Red Bluff, CA, USA
    Posts
    97

    Default Re: Small Cell Studies

    Solomon, I must say, thank you for pointing me to this thread! I'm intrigued! This is exactly the type of discussion that we should be having. I've only read half of the posts, which has only indicated to me how little I know and understand. I'll continue reading tommorow, as my girlfriend just showed up at my house and is irritated that I'm not paying any attention to her! Based on my small sample size, SC discussions on a Friday night significantly restrict the happiness of your girlfriend. I'm pretty sure that my conclusion is sound, despite the small sample size. Best,

    Bob

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