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  1. #121
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by WLC View Post
    When you get microgram quantities of pesticides in each gram of wax (about a mL), then you can appreciate why even wax coated plastic can be problematic. That 8ppm number for coumaphos is big.
    A microgram is 1 millionth the size of a gram. A milligram is 1 thousandth the size of a gram. Rounding 8 micrograms to a milligram seems like a stretch to me

  2. #122
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Solomon Parker View Post
    Micrograms, surely.

    I understand the confusion now, it's a matter of understanding units. One microgram is one millionth of a gram. For instance, if you weighed 150 lbs., it would take about 102000 micrograms of cyanide to kill you.

    The best approach to minimize contaminants in real numbers is not to dump chemicals in your hives.
    When comparing the weight of a bee to a 150 lb person, micrograms are real numbers.

    The biggest reduction in contaminants is, of course, to not dump chemicals in your hives. The best approach to minimizing contaminants, on the other hand, is to not put anything in your hives that may contain toxins that could affect the bees.

  3. #123
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    In addition, toxicity to humans for a variety of chemicals is in the microgram range.

  4. #124
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    The LD50 of many of these wax contaminants is 2ng/bee.

    I am comfortable going from ng/g to ppb, etc. . The 1st paper showed amounts in the ppm range for individual contaminants.

    What we need to know is how much wax (in grams) is used to coat a plastic frame (or contained in a sheet of foundation) to get an idea of how close to the LD50 you get.

    I think it's pretty close per frame. I would also note that synergistic effects have been shown to occur when different pesticides are combined.

    The second paper showed lower pesticide amounts and had some useful median values as well.

    I suppose someone could take out a calculator once all the values are known to see how bad things can get when using wax foundation or coated plastic.

    It's a useful way to compare the pesticide burden in wax foundation/wax coated plastic frames vs foundationless.

    Why guess?

  5. #125
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    From the emotion being posted on this topic, I get the idea that there are a lot of people watching this thread that are losing sleep over this. To their horror they've realized that they are using plastic frames in their hives and that they have given their bees a death sentence from vast (i.e. microgram) amounts of toxic sludge found in the wax coating of their frames.

    Just want to offer a sanity check here. We are talking about the thin layer of wax coating on the frames and it's level of contamination was at a concentration that was habitable to previous hives. That coating wax is minuscule compared to the actual clean wax that they will draw out on the frames over top of this and use.

    How much wax is used to coat a set of 10 frames? Is it even a grams worth used to coat a full set? The actual amounts of wax that gets harvested by melting down completely drawn out frames is nothing (and thats for full drawn out comb not the wax coating).

  6. #126
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by SantaFeBeek View Post
    When comparing the weight of a bee to a 150 lb person, micrograms are real numbers.
    are you suggesting that individual bees are ingesting micrograms of the toxins? I wouldn't necessarily think that the 60,000 bees concurrently living in the hive (or even a year's worth of subsequent bee generations) would be collectively consuming micrograms of toxins.

  7. #127
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Based on what WLC said above, that the LD50, which means that 50% of the bees will die at that concentration, is 2 nanograms per bee. That means one bee would only need 2 or 3 1000ths of a microgram to die. I don't doubt that there are various detrimental effects to the bees systems at lower dosages than that.

    Another problem that I can see with wax contaminant accumulation is that as foundation is used and more contaminants are collected in that wax, then the wax is recycled for more foundation, the contaminant concentrations would logically be getting higher and higher over time. That would be an interesting study, as well.

    Good discussion! I hadn't thought about a lot of these issues this critically before.

  8. #128
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    There's alot of information in both papers. They're worth looking over at least a few times.

    However, I don't think that a gram or 2 of wax per plastic frame is an exageration. Also, wax foundation probably comes in at alot more than a gram per sheet.

    I'd say that a sheet of wax foundation can easily have 10-100 ug of pesticides.

    PS-Don't forget that the fungicides can interfere with pollen/nutrition, etc. .

  9. #129
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Here is another thought. As a beginner would you rather be choose a method that involves picking out the right kind of foundation among dozens of choices, choosing the right size, wire or no wire, maybe getting an extractor, monitoring for diseases and then choosing a chemical treatment that may or may not work and then determining the right time to use it,

    Or,

    Being told just to buy all medium boxes and medium frames, coming up with a guide and then just dumping the bee's in there and basically ignoring all the the terrible things that you hear about effecting hives until fall where you simply pull out your frames, cut out the comb and strain the honey in a plastic bucket. If your hives die then your not a failure, your just removing bad genetics.

    Even assuming none of this is actually true, which method sounds the most appealing?

    Its the same reason people by Apple (computer) products. Simplicity is perhaps the most appealing trait that a product can have.

  10. #130
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by rweakley View Post
    And sergie the link you wanted me to look at was broken.
    O-oo, I am sorry. Try this:
    http://www.plosone.org/article/info%...l.pone.0014720
    it is the same as WLC's a few posts above. It would be really great if you could evaluate it. To me it sounds OK and experimental part is fine with me, but I am not experienced in beekeeping, so I could not tell if any flaw in bees part of the experiment.

  11. #131
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by WLC View Post
    ...Maybe the only treatment free folks are the ones who are both 'hardcore' treatment-free and foundationless. Is there such a beekeeper?
    I have two beehives in urban environment for 10 month. These bees are survivors. They never saw any "treatment" on purpose. They were the same way for 2 more years before I inherit them. They used to have some occasional frame with foundation. Now they are 95% foundation free. One hive recently swarmed (my mistake) and small (one deep) in comparison to another - nest occupies 3 mediums and 3 more medium full of honey on top, total 6 mediums. This gigantic one has a stable mites count of 50, which I guess considered to be high, but bees are living with this for 10 month with me and 2 years before. There is no evidence of complication from mites. I never was introduced to her Majesty, but it looks like they are flourishing. I never did a deep inspection of the nest and could not tell to you how much, for instance, pollen they have... In Los Angeles we have quite a big movement towards a natural beekeeping. I do not think that "natural" is the same as "treatment-free". The idea of letting bees die by "natural cause" seems to me ridiculous - we bring them from Europe by force, placed them in unnatural conditions and now, like God, imposing the "unnatural selection" on them ... I would help my bees to survive if I could - same way as I would help any animal, who is in trouble. The problem is that as with any wild animal, how to know what is good for them? Do not do more damage. This is a real challenge. With bees - they teach me what is good and what is bad for them. I am a good learner so far. I wish you bees be happy and healthy! Sergey

  12. #132
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by SantaFeBeek View Post
    Based on what WLC said above, that the LD50, which means that 50% of the bees will die at that concentration, is 2 nanograms per bee
    Is the LD50 rating based on bees ingesting the 2 nanograms of toxin, vapor exposure to the toxin, or is it based on skin contact? I'm assuming the rating is based on ingesting it in a water-based food solution which is much different measurement than exposure of it residing in buried wax.

    Again if the LD50 was based on a bees exposure to the toxin in wax, it would have killed off the original hive that had its entire comb containing the concentrated toxins well before it reached that level.

  13. #133
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Table 4 in the second paper is a good place to look at the range of various pesticides found in wax relative to their LD50s.

    There is an average of 12.4 ug of various pesticides per gram of wax.

    As for how all of these various pesticides can impact a hive...

    It's not just in the wax.

  14. #134
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by WLC View Post
    However, I don't think that a gram or 2 of wax per plastic frame is an exageration.
    Googling I found that some beekeepers who roll their own wax on waxless frames use roughly 2 pounds for 100 frames. If you go with that as a baseline that converts to about .3 grams of wax to coat the 2 sides of a frame. I would speculate that the frame companies are even more efficient when applying wax, so the standard store bought frames would likely use less than .3 grams.

  15. #135
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by BeeGhost View Post
    How can going foundationless not be cheaper? Plastic foundation is $1 a piece, $10 per box. I run two deeps and super on that for my honey, thats atleast three boxes of foundation per hive which equates to about $30 just in foundation. If I have 10 hives thats $300 just in foundation. I can take that saved money and buy more frames and more hive bodies.

    As for the drone comb being built on the whole frame...........GREAT!! I can cut out the whole "varroa trap" frame and let them build it out again. I do have a couple hives that had full frames of drone comb, I can also circulate those into other hives or move them up and they can pack it full of honey for me!!

    I dont know if foundationless is healthier for bees or not, im not a scientist. But I have found them to draw it out WAY faster than if they have to start on plastic without the extra coating of wax. Some of the comb does get jacked up, but its rare and mostly due to my putting undrawn frames next to undrawn plastic. If they mess it up, I cut it out and they can start again, afterall the house bees do need something to keep them busy, right!

    I am going to try one box of foundationless in the medium honey super and see how it goes, right now I do run plastic that I bought last year when I started.

    I do love foundationless, but the real test is going to be when I move my bees here shortly from one yard to the next and see if the foundation comes apart, if it does I will be ready with rubber bands and will end up going back to plastic foundation with extra wax melted onto it.......and pouring out more money for it!!LOL
    If i can extract my deeps and mediums I'm sure you will be able to move your hives without too much trouble.

  16. #136
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by cerezha View Post
    O-oo, I am sorry. Try this:
    http://www.plosone.org/article/info%...l.pone.0014720
    it is the same as WLC's a few posts above. It would be really great if you could evaluate it. To me it sounds OK and experimental part is fine with me, but I am not experienced in beekeeping, so I could not tell if any flaw in bees part of the experiment.
    The only thing missing was the exact methodology of how they extracted the pesticides and such from the wax, what kind of standard material did they use, did they use an internal standard (another chemical that is put in with the standard sample and the sample being tested, helps remove equipment noise and such.) I will assume from the overall professionalism of the rest of the paper that the other methodology was probably correct as well. Sounds like they were using better equipment than I used when I was in a lab. My machines were almost as old as me. I didn't read the whole thing yet, just enough to get the jist of things.

  17. #137
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by BayHighlandBees View Post
    Googling I found that some beekeepers who roll their own wax on waxless frames use roughly 2 pounds for 100 frames. If you go with that as a baseline that converts to about .3 grams of wax to coat the 2 sides of a frame. I would speculate that the frame companies are even more efficient when applying wax, so the standard store bought frames would likely use less than .3 grams.
    Did anybody take arithmetic in the middle school? 1 pound is approximately 450 grams times 2 = 900 grams divided by 100 = 9, nine! grams of wax per frame!!!! Is this number manipulation done purposely? To confuse people? Sergey

  18. #138
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by SantaFeBeek View Post
    Another problem that I can see with wax contaminant accumulation is that as foundation is used and more contaminants are collected in that wax, then the wax is recycled for more foundation, the contaminant concentrations would logically be getting higher and higher over time.
    SantaFe,
    I think for concentrations to get higher and higher from recycling wax it would require a much thicker amount to be applied to new plastic foundation than is. If you are only applying enough to coat the plastic, I don't see how that would ever move the dial on increasing the concentrations. Perhaps wax foundations might have more possibility of a cyclical effect?

  19. #139
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    Quote Originally Posted by rweakley View Post
    .. I will assume from the overall professionalism of the rest of the paper that the other methodology was probably correct as well. Sounds like they were using better equipment than I used when I was in a lab. My machines were almost as old as me. I didn't read the whole thing yet, just enough to get the jist of things.
    Many thanks Rod. Since they sent samples to specialized laboratory for analysis, I guess, they used a standard to the field procedures. It is common practice in research papers to refer to the standard procedure instead describing in details. Sergey

  20. #140
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    Default Re: Can someone please explain the Foundationless hype to me?

    my bad, I converted to Ounces

    Quote Originally Posted by cerezha View Post
    Did anybody take arithmetic in the middle school? 1 pound is approximately 450 grams times 2 = 900 grams divided by 100 = 9, nine! grams of wax per frame!!!! Is this number manipulation done purposely? To confuse people? Sergey

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