Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 21
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Nova Scotia, Canada
    Posts
    54

    Default Dadant small cell foundation

    Does anyone here have expereince with using dadant 5.1 for first regression step, and then moving to 4.9? If so, how did it work out? and how long did it take? I am referring to established colonies.
    Donna

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Kensington, Maryland, USA
    Posts
    63

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    I have no experience with 5.1, but plenty with their 4.9 Foundation. I have used only 4.9 since 2007, and have used it for the installation of LC or unknown packages, nucs, and swarms with success. Bees will draw what they can draw. They do not always get it right the first time, but if they dont you can cull the frame and let them try again. As you might know there are a number of factors that play into the colony's comb building. If a strong flow is on, or they are being feed with large volume full access hive feeders, you might find that the cells are excessively large. More colonies than less do an admirable job with the 4.9 without any step down.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Nova Scotia, Canada
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    Quote Originally Posted by gkervitsky View Post
    I have no experience with 5.1, but plenty with their 4.9 Foundation. I have used only 4.9 since 2007, and have used it for the installation of LC or unknown packages, nucs, and swarms with success. Bees will draw what they can draw. They do not always get it right the first time, but if they dont you can cull the frame and let them try again. As you might know there are a number of factors that play into the colony's comb building. If a strong flow is on, or they are being feed with large volume full access hive feeders, you might find that the cells are excessively large. More colonies than less do an admirable job with the 4.9 without any step down.
    Thank you for your reply, I have been trying the foundationless route with mixed results so I am looking at going with SC foundation for next spring. Since they are somewhat regressed I should be able to go directly to 4.9. Did you use the 4.9 exclusively, even in honey supers? I do like foundationless but I think I need to move more quickly. I don't have any mites or any other diseases in my hives, I am on an island in northern Nova Scotia. Mites are beginning to spread this way so I want to be ready. Pleased to hear of your success.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,032

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    My little operation has been using small cell wax foundation almost exclusively since 2003. In the last couple years, I have begun using Mann Lake PF-1** frames but that's another issue.

    I have used it for everything. The best drawn comb stays in the broodnest while the poorly drawn stuff gets moved into the honey supers.

    I have never seriously considered an intermediate step in the regression process. I don't feel it would provide any benefit and would certainly provide added complexity.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Nova Scotia, Canada
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    Quote Originally Posted by Solomon Parker View Post
    My little operation has been using small cell wax foundation almost exclusively since 2003. In the last couple years, I have begun using Mann Lake PF-1** frames but that's another issue.

    I have used it for everything. The best drawn comb stays in the broodnest while the poorly drawn stuff gets moved into the honey supers.

    I have never seriously considered an intermediate step in the regression process. I don't feel it would provide any benefit and would certainly provide added complexity.
    Thank you Solomon, yes, I am thinking that is the way to go, my plan is to start feeding it in first thing in the spring before a main flow really gets going. Did you cut out corners for drone brood?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,032

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    Like Dee Lusby, I cut off 3/8" or so from the bottom edge of the foundation. It avoids buckling and gives space for the bees to draw some drone if they so choose. They don't fill it in usually, but it's there.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Nova Scotia, Canada
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    ok, yes, I read Dee's forum too...awesome! I am hoping to order some HSC also in case I am lucky enough to catch a swarm. We don't have HSC or SC foundation available up here, so it is all expensive to ship - I think my honey will be a lot more expensive next year So hard waiting for spring!
    How quickly did you see new queens raised on SC?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,032

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    I certainly had natural supersedures the first year, and at least one swarm. I've never really noticed a difference in size, there is a natural variation anyway. I did walkaway splits for years, but now I have switched to grafting into wax queen cups I get from some supplier whose name escapes me. They are cheaper than plastic and you get them by the pound and a pound has like 3000 of them. When my pound runs out, I'm going to try making my own. If you check out my website, you can see pictures of my queens, and my blog has even more, if you go back a year or two. Any pictures older than this year are of queens raised by the bees rather than in man made queen cups.

    As far as the price, I figure if I sell out in six months, the price is too low! Even in demand though I don't want to gouge anybody. I'm nice like that.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Nova Scotia, Canada
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    Quote Originally Posted by Solomon Parker View Post
    I certainly had natural supersedures the first year, and at least one swarm. I've never really noticed a difference in size, there is a natural variation anyway. I did walkaway splits for years, but now I have switched to grafting into wax queen cups I get from some supplier whose name escapes me. They are cheaper than plastic and you get them by the pound and a pound has like 3000 of them. When my pound runs out, I'm going to try making my own. If you check out my website, you can see pictures of my queens, and my blog has even more, if you go back a year or two. Any pictures older than this year are of queens raised by the bees rather than in man made queen cups.

    As far as the price, I figure if I sell out in six months, the price is too low! Even in demand though I don't want to gouge anybody. I'm nice like that.
    Thanks Solomon...checking out your website and blog...back with more questions later.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Kensington, Maryland, USA
    Posts
    63

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    Donna,

    I noticed your comments about "foundationless" and "mixed results" and it has further peaked my interest. I am interested in learning a little more your methods, general climatic conditions, and bees that you maintain. I am also interested in more information on the meaning of "mixed results". With more information and photos perhaps, it might be possible to narrow down on reasons for your mixed results. Per some of the Lusby information, colder regions tend to have larger cell sizes (http://www.beesource.com/files/climatemap.pdf). I follow a similar strategy as SolomonP, using 4.9 or natural cell exclusively keeping the well drawn foundation in the center brood area positions and poorly drawn or excessive drone comb to the outsides or honey storage areas. If you went through every frame most are started from 4.9 foundation strips, followed by an almost equal number of full-sheet foundation or wood strips/rotated wedge bars for foundation-free. I'd guess 60/20/20 ratio.

    I run open brood nests and assume the queen will move vertically about 21-24 inches. I personally feel that the natural and/or man-made feeding conditions play a large role in the comb building results. If a strong natural or man-made flow is on.....you will get erratic comb building. I find that the best comb building comes with a with a light to moderate (tempered man-made) nectar flow and good pollen availability. My bees are survivor-tested mutts. Most of the genetics, existing in or brought into, my local area is italian. Local winter losses are often in the 35-50% range. I have focused at bringing in darker and more frugal genetics to my yard, and have much lower loss percentages. Much of my base stock originates from feral colony extractions that I perform locally....and most of that originates from colonies that have survived in location a minimum of 2 winters. I have 2 colonies that are in existence for 5 years continuously without active queen replacement, and others that are in the 3 year range. I do boutique breeding from these hives and share the genetics with like minded beekeepers. As for recommendations, I would personally say, save your money and buy more 100% beeswax and stay away from the HSC. I bought 20 frames worth and only in rare situations has it ever been used by the bees.....even in my all 4.9mm fleet. They have used it only in a heavy flow, but more for nectar and pollen storage than anything else.....only sparingly has it used by the queens and I cannot imaging it is good for overwintering clusters.

    Another caution is that I started raising queens b/c every purchased queen that I added to my colonies was superceeded in quick order. I am of the opinion that queens raised in larger sized cups 3/8" wax or plastic have a harder time squeezing into narrow cells. It may be slight, but its sufficient to slow them down and result in their superceedure as soons as there are enough eggs being laid. There could be other reasons, but I do not have this problem when requeening with my own queens or those raised from other small cell sources.

    George

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Asheville, North Carolina, USA
    Posts
    552

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    I disagree a little with you George. I believe the queens are replaced because the bees blame her for the lack of brood between the time you realize you're queenless, and the time the replacement is put in. I apologize for not having the time to explain it more, but search supercedures here and look through the discussions. I also don't think queens made in small cell hives are any different in size than regular hives. The bees build the cells out to the same approximate size, unless of course, it's not a planned supercedure. They don't use the small cells at all. My two cents .

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Asheville, North Carolina, USA
    Posts
    552

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    On another note, Frizzel,

    I tried two packages with Dadant small cell this year. It was my little experiment to give it a go. Here's the link to my post about it: http://www.beesource.com/forums/show...ions-this-year.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,032

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    Quote Originally Posted by jadell View Post
    They don't use the small cells at all.
    Agreed. Queen rearing doesn't have much or anything to do with the cell size of the worker comb. Emergency supersedures may somewhat, but swarm cells certainly don't.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Kensington, Maryland, USA
    Posts
    63

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    Hey we can agree to disagree if you want....I stand firm on the queen size issue. Smaller workers, tend to produce slightly smaller drone cells and queen cups. Its tough to talk in absolutes b/c the bees will build cells in a range of sizes, hence I use the word "tend". In the situations I cited, none of the queen placements were in colonies that were without queens for any significant length of time....usually splits that were 24 hours queenless or less. Release method involved Queens placed on comb with wire cages with emerging brood, and all were successfully released...only to be replaced within a month or so with emergency cells.

    Could there have been other issues associated with queen acceptance, perhaps. Is there a chance that fully-regressed 4.9mm worker caste bees draw the same sized drone cells and queen cups....not likely. While the size differences are difficult to see, both Queens and Drones from small cell hives will generally be slightly smaller than their contemporaries from LC hives.
    Last edited by gkervitsky; 11-12-2012 at 08:21 AM. Reason: clarification and typos

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    North Berwick, Maine, USA
    Posts
    45

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    Thanks for posting d.frizzell. This is something I've been thinking about too. I currently have 1 hive. They are regressed bees on foundationless. I started them from a regressed package on comb guides only this year. For the most part the comb has been straight but they just didn't draw near enough of it. 1 and 10 were lacking. Even the best brood frames were drawn out in bell curves that used maybe 2/3 if the frame. I have two nucs coming next year. They are on 5.2. Ultimately I want them smaller, and foundationless. I feel like getting them going on nice straight, full comb might give me better results. That would give me the flexibility to put a blank between two good frames and rotate out the foundation. Do I go with 4.9 and hope they draw it or give them 5.1 assuming it will be easier for them (going with the assumption they will build something under 5 when given the chance on their own)?? Hmmmmm.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Nova Scotia, Canada
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    Quote Originally Posted by Kristen2678 View Post
    Thanks for posting d.frizzell. This is something I've been thinking about too. I currently have 1 hive. They are regressed bees on foundationless. I started them from a regressed package on comb guides only this year. For the most part the comb has been straight but they just didn't draw near enough of it. 1 and 10 were lacking. Even the best brood frames were drawn out in bell curves that used maybe 2/3 if the frame. I have two nucs coming next year. They are on 5.2. Ultimately I want them smaller, and foundationless. I feel like getting them going on nice straight, full comb might give me better results. That would give me the flexibility to put a blank between two good frames and rotate out the foundation. Do I go with 4.9 and hope they draw it or give them 5.1 assuming it will be easier for them (going with the assumption they will build something under 5 when given the chance on their own)?? Hmmmmm.
    Thanks George and everyone for sharing, I will join this conversion again when I have a bit more time and when I am less stressed! I just found out I have mites in my hives! Yes, I know you are all shaking your heads and saying...of course you have mites, well believe it or not it is a first for me after 8 years of keeping bees. I live on an island that has been mite free until very recently...so I am going to need all the advice I can get because I am not treating!! Right now I am preparing to move my hives to another location because my neighbour has bees and they are still mite-free. I do feel I have a jump on things with foundationless, but my results are similiar to Kristen. Anyway, I will be be back.
    Donna
    Cape Breton Island
    Nova Scotia
    Canada

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Asheville, North Carolina, USA
    Posts
    552

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    Kristen,
    If you want small cell bees, there's only one way to do it...start. The longer you put off placing small cell in the hive, the longer it will take to get them there. Good luck!

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    North Berwick, Maine, USA
    Posts
    45

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    Quote Originally Posted by jadell View Post
    Kristen,
    If you want small cell bees, there's only one way to do it...start. The longer you put off placing small cell in the hive, the longer it will take to get them there. Good luck!
    I know that's the right answer. But I wish there was another!!! Thanks!! 4.9 it is.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Leominster, MA USA
    Posts
    165

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    If you don't have an objection to plastic, the Mann Lake pf 100's can work to get the bees regressed fairly quickly. Then you can feed in small cell foundation or foundationless frames.

    Ramona

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    North Berwick, Maine, USA
    Posts
    45

    Default Re: Dadant small cell foundation

    Quote Originally Posted by Ramona View Post
    If you don't have an objection to plastic, the Mann Lake pf 100's can work to get the bees regressed fairly quickly. Then you can feed in small cell foundation or foundationless frames.

    Ramona
    When I hear plastic, I say eewwwww, but I don't know why. I have no reason to feel that way! I'm just re-reading your book too. pf100's are another good option. What would you do with two Kirk Webster nucs?

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads