Always like to read your post Walt but it is my belief that bees in the north have developed different habits than bees in warmer zones. I am not sure why your bees are reluctant to cross over from one frame to another for raising brood but my bees could give a rats a-- about that. Maybe because they fill in the gap and it is one big comb to them. It has got me beat.
I like to be definitive but you can only do that for about a 5 mile radius. At least that is what it looks like to me.