Re: What do these old combs tell you?
Looks like wax moth cocoons and webs....A wax moth in one of the pictures too. Wax moths probably moved in when the bees were either weak or gone. Do the frames contain wax foundation or plastic foundation -I see at least one plastic foundation? If its plastic, you may be able to scrape a lot of that old comb away and use the frame and foundation again. The bees will do a lot of cleaning of comb like that....Its a personal call, I don't know the point that you would say yes or no to a new foundation, but I see some that could go either way (less risk of new foundation when in doubt). HTH
I try to learn from my mistakes, and from yours when you give me a heads up :)