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Thread: Regression

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
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    Redmond Oregon
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    Default Regression

    In the coming weeks I am going to attempt to regress the one hive I have. I've read a lot in this forum about using the MannLake small cell frames to accomplish this. The question that comes to mind is this: if I replace the old frames with small cell, where will they raise drones? Maybe thats a dumb question, but I'm trying to work out a plan to regress this hive and not having done it before I'm pretty much without a game plan.

    OR - do I simply forget about using small cell frames and put in foundationless frames?

    Thank you for any help.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Danbury, CT
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    Default Re: Regression

    The bees will make their own drone cells if they want.

    This is a very informative page. written well before regression became all the rage.

    http://website.lineone.net/~dave.cus...egression.html
    Always question Conventional Wisdom.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
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    Redmond Oregon
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    Default Re: Regression

    bluegrass, please don't get me wrong, I appreciate the info and I understand the principle. However, right now my head is spinning with too much information as I completely remake my approach to beekeeping. This season will just be my third season. last year I lost 2 of my three hives, pretty sure it was mites. Between small cell, frameless, regressing the hive I have, top bar considerations, where to find what equipment and what system to start two new packages on this spring, I am completely on overload. Therefore, not to minimalize the info you gave, but can you, or anyone else, make a simple and clear suggestion regarding the best (easiest?) approach to regressing the hive I have. Thankyou.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Regression

    The link I provided walks you through the process step by step. I really can't comment because I haven't ever attempted to regress bees. The only bees I have had on small cell are bees I have captured that where all ready regressed.

    If you look at the other threads on regression... you will quickly see you are not going to get a simple answer. These types of threads end up being lightning rods and 100s of posts long..
    Always question Conventional Wisdom.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
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    Redmond Oregon
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    170

    Default Re: Regression

    OK, let me refine it to one question. If eventually all the foundation is replaced with small cell, will they be able to use it to raise drones?

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Regression

    Simple answer: Yes... they will draw drone cells somewhere in the hive.
    Always question Conventional Wisdom.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Greensboro, North Carolina
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    2,706

    Default Re: Regression

    Bluegrass is right. There are dozens of threads on this topic, and none of them are straight forward. Most have several different opinions (imagine that) on what the best way is. Allow me to briefly sum up what I think the points are:

    Small cell wax foundation: add each frame into the center of the brood next. Most of the time, the first few frames are drawn out odd. Replace as needed. It usually takes a few brood cycles before they start drawing it out correctly.

    Mann Lake PF frames: Plastic frames. Treat the same as wax foundation, but bees are much more likely to regress with these quicker.

    Shake method: Lusby recommended regression by shaking all bees from a hive into a box of small cell foundation. In a sense, you turn a hive into a package. Very stressful on the bees, but some say its very effective. Sometimes may have to shake multiple times. You can fully regress in one season.

    Foundationless: Place the same as wax foundation, in the center of the broodnest. Results may vary (mine actually drew it out LARGER than 5.4mm foundation, but I'm told this is abnormal).

    As far as drones go, you may get it if you use foundationless. Just put them in the 2&9 spots, and it will be ok. The hive won't draw out a full box worth of drone comb. If you don't use foundationless, you can add drone comb so they can build it in specific spots. If not that, they will find extra places to put it (burcomb).

    Feel free to correct me if I mis-stated . . .

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Outagamie County, Wisconsin USA
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    835

    Default Re: Regression

    You can cut out small lower portions/corners of the small cell foundation plastic frames that go in the brood area. The bees will be more than happy to put their drone brood there.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    jackson county, alabama, usa
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    4,042

    Default Re: Regression

    or consider having a dedicated frame for a drone trap, as part of a mite control strategy.

    http://scientificbeekeeping.com/figh...al-tactics-ii/

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    43,624

    Default Re: Regression

    >if I replace the old frames with small cell, where will they raise drones?

    They always manage, but an empty frame in the middle of the brood nest if there is no much drone comb will get drawn as drone. My typical brood box had a drone frame in each of the outside positions that was drawn on foundationless. In other words the bees drew it, wherever, and I moved it to the outside positions. With 9 frames in an eight frame box numbered: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9, position 1 and 9 are drone comb.

    A common place for drones with any plastic frames is between the boxes.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

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