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  1. #41
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    jackson county, alabama, usa
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    Default Re: small cell foundation

    not arguing with those successes sol, the argument is whether or not the successes are attributable to small cell or other factors. there are cases of treatment free success without small cell.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  2. #42
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,113

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    I'm not talking about successes. I'm talking about simply using small cell. There is a distinct lack of research that has attempted to use the methods of those who actually use the method. It's almost as if the studies were designed to fail. I'm not saying that's the case, but if you were going to study something you hadn't done, wouldn't you find out how it's done first?
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  3. #43
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    Jul 2010
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    jackson county, alabama, usa
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    Default Re: small cell foundation

    like you will be sol, i have defended a master's thesis.

    wouldn't the answer to your question be that a study should be designed to control all of the variables except that one?

    i would think before such a study could start, one would have to already have regressed bees in the (small cell) experimental group, hopefully on identical comb material as the (not small cell) control group.

    hive design, feeding regimen, colony size, ect. would have to be matched between the two groups.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  4. #44
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
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    5,113

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    Exactly.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  5. #45
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    Jul 2010
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    jackson county, alabama, usa
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    Default Re: small cell foundation

    the more difficult variable to control would be genetics. one would have to first regress bees from the same lineage as the controls.

    it would be no small task to conduct such a study.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  6. #46
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
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    5,113

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    I'd do it given proper funding. I don't ask for much, money for supplies and a typical Master's candidate stipend for the duration.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  7. #47
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    jackson county, alabama, usa
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    4,657

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    can we do it on credit?
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  8. #48
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Rowley, MA
    Posts
    253

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    What are you trying to prove ? I don't see many indicating that small cell is the panacea for mites but that it is part of a larger management plan. As such rather than trying to prove the efficacy of small cell with these studies why not study the guys that are successful and mimic thier entire methodology?
    Last edited by Hawkster; 12-11-2012 at 04:21 PM.

  9. #49
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    Jul 2010
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    jackson county, alabama, usa
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    Default Re: small cell foundation

    zactly. although it would be nice to know one way or the other, for example, if it is worth someone going to the trouble of regressing their entire operation to achieve whatever potential benefit there may be.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  10. #50
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Worcester County, Massachusetts
    Posts
    3,682

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    Here is a rough draft of the study I would do....if anyone wants to fund it, please let me know. There would be both observation hives and 10 frame hives I've been working on the observation hive setup for a while, so that is hashed out a bit more than the 10 frame trials. I can't take the time go through all the details at the moment....but I have given this some thought

    Ideally the observation hive trials should be done in several locations concurently (I imagine a set of customized trailers that could be placed with various beekeepers).

    (20) 2 Frame Observation Hives, in 4 groups, each group facing a different direction (NSEW). Cross A and Cross B combs are made from left and right halves of Mann Lake small and large frames “married” together (much like the "mosaic frames" used in comb contamination trials). Cross A will have small on the top left and bottom right, Cross B will have small on the top right and bottom left.
    • Small Mann Lake
    • Large Mann Lake
    • Foundationless
    • Cross A
    • Cross B

    Each observation hive (OH) will have 24 hour video recording on each face, as well as other metric data collection (weight, bee counter, array of temperature sensors).

    Observational data obtained would be:
    • Cell size preferences for various functions/activities
    • Development time (pre and post capping)
    • Behavioral Differences between the groups
    • Survival

    Experimental data obtained would be:
    • Mite counts
    o Shake/Wash/Drop
    o Pulling Brood
    o Behavioral differences in marked bees emerged from different sized comb
    • Impact of queen could be measured by swapping queens between large and small cell hives
    • Microbial analysis
    o Bees
    o Bee Bread
    o Bee Poop

    Costs (X 20 per location)
    • Observation Hives ($200)
    • Monitoring Equipment
    o Cameras ($200)
    o Scale equipment ($200)
    o Bee Counter (?)
    o Temperature Probes ($200)
    • Package of Bees ($95)
    • 5 Plastic Frames ($25) (packages will be started in a nuc to first draw comb and to regress where appropriate)
    • Climate controlled space with outside walls on 4 sides (?)

    Fixed Costs
    • Computer equipment ($2000)
    • Systems integration and customization ($2000)
    • Time (?)

    10 frame trials: Should be done X 100 by 20 beekeepers with various practices (weighted towards “no treatment” types) in all different parts of the U.S. (or world)…each beekeeper with 5 sets of hives in 5 locations.
    • Small Mann Lake
    • Large Mann Lake
    • Foundationless
    • Wax small cell
    • Wax large cell

  11. #51
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Fairfield County, Connecticut, USA
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    3,674

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    if anyone wants to fund it, please let me know
    Is funding through Kickstarter a possibility?
    BeeCurious
    Trying to think inside the box...

  12. #52
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
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    Worcester County, Massachusetts
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    3,682

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    Actually, that's not a terrible idea. Let me think about that.

    deknow

  13. #53
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Vancouver, B.C., Canada
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    39

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    Quote Originally Posted by Solomon Parker View Post
    Exactly. What happened was, they apparently never asked any actual small cell beekeepers how it was done and they attempted to have the small cell wax foundation drawn in the honey supers (like you do with conventional sized comb) which was an abject failure (as any small cell beekeeper could tell you). They substituted plastic comb and the results were unfavorable (as any beekeeper who has used the stuff could tell you).

    Normally in doing a piece of research like this, you'd find relevant information in your literature review, but since there wasn't much literature to be found, they should have taken the initiative and talked to small cell beekeepers any of which has already made these mistakes and can tell you how not to do it.

    Science is about removing variables. I don't see any solid conclusion that can be drawn from this study.
    I don't believe the researchers are as dumb as your suspect. I do believe that any time you mess with mother nature (i.e. increasing cell size over 100 years ago) you eventually end up paying for it. Philosophically I believe completely in the concept of natural, small cell beekeeping but wonder why of the many scientific studies that I have read on the possible advantages of small cell beekeeping is there nothing supporting this method. All of the natural beekeepers that I have talked to speak in religious terms as to their belief in small cell beekeeping and arrogantly dismiss all others as duped victims of the corrupt system we live in (i.e. Dee Lusby). As an old beekeeper I long for factual evidence supporting small cell beekeeping.

  14. #54
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Suffolk, VA
    Posts
    2,667

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    Surely this would fit into the SARE Program.

    SARE's vision is an enduring American agriculture of the highest quality. This agriculture is profitable, protects the nation's land and water and is a force for a rewarding way of life for farmers and ranchers whose quality products and operations sustain their communities and society.

    http://www.sare.org/Grants

  15. #55
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    May 2012
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    DFW area, TX, USA
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    1,102

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    You guys sure have a lot of testosterone

    Anybody know off hand the size of a bee found in unmolested/isolated locations containing native bees in Africa or Europe or the Middle East? I've seen reports of cell sizes with a wide range. I ask this because you should have some basis in theory or fact for choosing 4.9, 5.1 or whatever cell size you use to test your hypothesis.
    LeeB
    I try to learn from my mistakes, and from yours when you give me a heads up :)

  16. #56
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,477

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    Quote Originally Posted by Baja View Post
    All of the natural beekeepers that I have talked to speak in religious terms as to their belief in small cell beekeeping and arrogantly dismiss all others as duped victims of the corrupt system we live in (i.e. Dee Lusby). As an old beekeeper I long for factual evidence supporting small cell beekeeping.
    Exactly as I feel Baja. As it stands now, in my eyes, small cell beekeeping is faith based beekeeping. Nothing empirical. Only anecdotal reporting. The SC proponents claim great successes, and elevate their leader to high priestess status. I watch SC beekeeper friends...yes I consider you all friends and I have no Cockerel in this fight. I see them lose most of their bees every winter, and make great claims of success with the remaining "survivor" bees.

    This beekeeping is no game to me. I eat, sleep and drink bees. Other than our house, everything is invested in bees, treated for nothing but varroa mites. Would I like to see SC beekeeping be the successful future of beekeeping? You bet I would. Would I regress some apiaries if someone could show me the proof? You bet I would. Counting production colonies and nucleus colonies, with more than 1000 out there in the fields of Vermont and New York, do you really think I would start the change-over of my combs to small cell because some are claiming great successes, but losing most of their bees every year. I can't afford an expensive mistake at this point in my career.

    Yes, there are those that hold up the successful SC beekeepers who have been at this for some time. Dee Lusby has recovered her operation at least 3 times. She says her bees' survival with no treatments is due to small cell comb. I think it's African blood. I think it's breeding from survivors. Kirk Webster has been treatment free for what, 10 years? I believe he's shifting to small cell...makes his own foundation. Claims it's his Russian stocks. But every other year or so he has a major loss of bees and re-stocks them with wintered nucleus colonies. Management, not small cell or any special breeding. And Dennis Murell claimed great successes with small cell. Gave great reports on his regression progress and success....until his colonies all perished from CCD. CCD?? Whatever.

    So, all I'm saying is...as so well stated by Baja...and you SC, TF beekeepers, friends and not, can slam me if you want...

    "As an old beekeeper I long for factual evidence supporting small cell beekeeping".

  17. #57
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Park City Ky
    Posts
    1,903

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    At this point in the SC evolution, I would put a lot more faith in good stock, and good management practices, than I would in trying to say all the success is due to SC. Far too many variables to definatively say, at this time, that success is due to SC. Twenty years from now, ( I won't be around), but others might be more convincing, with more proof.
    .

    cchoganjr

  18. #58
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
    Posts
    9,816

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Palmer View Post
    "As an old beekeeper I long for factual evidence supporting small cell beekeeping".
    Why? Is there enough profit (and time) in your operation to swap out 1000 hives? I can't see where that would ever be cost justified even if you had 5% losses from small cell. Wouldn't your customer base change? You are breeding for honey production not bee longevity. Why would you even consider small cell? Why would any commercial endeavor consider small cell?
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  19. #59
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Oshawa, Ontario
    Posts
    200

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    Whatever happened to seeing for yourself ?
    Discussion is beneficial, but I can't count the times people have demanded empirical evidence (and lots of it), while essentially defending methods and practices that amount to little more than dogma. My Dad farmed, and I used to hear "that's the way my Daddy did it, and that's the way I'm gonna do it."
    My dad started strip grazing, and was inundated with predictions of failure. He had great success with it.
    I experiment in order to learn what's best for me, here and now.
    I'll try new ideas, and what works for me, works for me.
    Just because you do it differently, doesn't mean that you, or I, are wrong.
    Just different.

  20. #60

    Default Re: small cell foundation

    Quote Originally Posted by Gord View Post
    Whatever happened to seeing for yourself ?
    Who is this directed to?
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

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