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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Kingston Springs, TN
    Posts
    115

    Default Awesome Inspection, a few questions with pictures, small cell patt, upside down comb.

    I went to do my inspection today. First one since I added a 2nd hive body on the 15th. I filled the 2nd hive body with alternating frames of foundationless and small cell foundation. The small cell foundation seems to have a weird pattern where the bees have drawn it. I dont know if I should trash this foundation and let them start over with a new sheet or what. Any opinions ? 2. On one frame, the bees are building comb from the bottom of the frame and the top, is this normal ? Im sure it must be ok, because its what they wanted to do.

    On the positive side, I had multipe frames of foundationless frames started, bees festooning everywhere, I found the queen doing well, and watched 3 bees eat their way out of their cells. Cant imagine an inspection much more exciting than this. There's lots of pictures, so the page may take a minute to load, but the pics are great, my wife is a photographer. Hope you enjoy.

    Small cell pattern weird.


    Close up


    Festooning Bees



    Queen


    Upside down comb



    Foundationless about 3 weeks old


    Emerging Bees


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Chapel Hill, NC
    Posts
    707

    Default Re: Awesome Inspection, a few questions with pictures, small cell patt, upside down c

    It's a nice looking hive, and a nice looking queen. The foundation is fine. Don't trash it! It appears they could not build small cell, so it something in between, therefore you have off center cells that are larger. they will put drones in these, or use them for pollen.

    It looks like most of the foundationless cells will be drone as they look larger. That's something to keep an eye on, but I would not try to correct that this season. Also, foundationless deeps hold up much better if they have some wiring done before they are built out. Try to keep them as vertical as possible when doing an inspection, or the comb may break free. You should be proud of your bees!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Anchorage, AK, USA
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: Awesome Inspection, a few questions with pictures, small cell patt, upside down c

    You hive looks great! Your bees seem to be doing so well with the foundationless frames. I would slowly remove one or two of the small cell foundation at a time and just replace with foundationless frames. Try to do this slowly making sure to have drawn out comb on both side of new frame. Your pictures are very high quality and I love looking at other hives.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Hampton CT
    Posts
    360

    Default Re: Awesome Inspection, a few questions with pictures, small cell patt, upside down c

    The "upside down" natural comb is not that unusual. They sometimes will start at the bottom and meet bees drawing from the top in the middle.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Kingston Springs, TN
    Posts
    115

    Default Re: Awesome Inspection, a few questions with pictures, small cell patt, upside down c

    Quote Originally Posted by Walliebee View Post
    you have off center cells that are larger. they will put drones in these, or use them for pollen. and

    It looks like most of the foundationless cells will be drone as they look larger.
    That doesnt sound good to me. It sounds like I will have a 2nd hive body full of all drone comb. I was hoping for brood. what should I do ? Remove the frames they havent started on yet and replace them with standard foundation ? Theres probably 4 or 5 frames they havent started on yet, or have barely started drawing on.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Bon Aqua, Tn USA
    Posts
    330

    Default Re: Awesome Inspection, a few questions with pictures, small cell patt, upside down c

    The pictures you show with capped brood does not seem to have hardly any drone cells, maybe they are going to use the one you show for honey and they want it to be larger. Why not wait and see what happens, then you will know for sure.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Kingston Springs, TN
    Posts
    115

    Default Re: Awesome Inspection, a few questions with pictures, small cell patt, upside down c

    Nantom670: That is true, I have almost no drones in my hives, or drone cells I should say. I very rarely see a drone and there are only a few drone cells on a few frames. I guess I will wait and see what happens.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Bon Aqua, Tn USA
    Posts
    330

    Default Re: Awesome Inspection, a few questions with pictures, small cell patt, upside down c

    I did what you said you did, my first deep they worked good and I had foundation with 4 foundation less frames mixed in and the 2nd box was a medium and they only put honey in that one. I have another medium that I put just above the deep and they have put honey in that one and are still building new comb in that one and filling the top two with honey and capping it. I too have not seen hardly any drone comb, a little, but not much. I do have some drones that I can see but not many. I have a side window on one hive and I use a half and half for my inner cover, half luan with a feeder which I am not using at this time and a plexiglass window so that I can watch them any time I wish. I usually look in on both hive every day. Here is my photobucket site with pictures;
    http://s1202.photobucket.com/albums/bb369/nantom670/

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,827

    Default Re: Awesome Inspection, a few questions with pictures, small cell patt, upside down c

    >The small cell foundation seems to have a weird pattern where the bees have drawn it.

    It looks typical of what large cell bees draw on 4.9mm small cell wax foundation the first try.

    > I dont know if I should trash this foundation and let them start over with a new sheet or what. Any opinions ?

    I would leave it until you have a hive's worth of comb and then rotate those out over time by moving them to the outside and removing some spring when they are empty or some summer when they are full of honey. But I would expect that to be in a couple of years.

    > 2. On one frame, the bees are building comb from the bottom of the frame and the top, is this normal ?

    They require heat to draw wax so often they draw it close to the cluster. You can make it easier by putting the box under the box with the cluster.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

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