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  1. #21
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    minz, I started with one overwintered hive having 2 deeps, the other 5 double deep hives (10 deep boxes) were completely drawn from foundation, ending the season with 6 double deep hives, all with fully capped stores in their upper box's.
    Bill...in Southeast Ohio

  2. #22
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    Walt, it has taken me some amount of time to understand the methods that you use and why you use them, it has been a mystery to me until today, I hope it's not because I am dense but now I can see why your methods work. Your seasons and forage and also the way your bees react to them is very similar to mine, where I live we are just a little bit behind you but not by much. I really thank you for taking the time to explain your beekeeping techniques, I have become a better beekeeper as a result.
    Bill...in Southeast Ohio

  3. #23
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    No comments on the pic provided by squarepeg? Am disappointed. Thought at least a few remarks were forthcoming on fake photography.
    The 2 units were at home in TN. The inset was a colony taken to MD. Was spending half time in MD that season, seeing to the care of my mother suffering from dementia. Took that hive up there to tinker with while there. Not that it matters, but the season there is delayed about 10 days from mine here.

    mins,
    They both were started on all foundation, but when the unit with the deep bogged down on growth, we did add a frame of brood from a developed colony (twice) to get them going again. With the boost, the colony drew the rest of the frames in the deep. I know - we cheated a little on the concept we were demonstrating. Maybe it would take 3 starters to cover all contingencies.

    Roland,
    Thanks for the input. One did and one didn't. But I still don't know whether the one that did started before "main flow" or not. You're right - it's hard to predict the outcome, especially when you monkey with their instincts for an empty cavity filled with continuous comb.

    The reason this thread was started before the results were in is that it supports some opinions that were challanged on another thread. I don't remember all the circumstances that led to those opinions, but we had success in applying them and we apply them on a regular basis. The opinions in question:
    1..The bees prefer to rear brood in a deep, when the alternative is a shallow.
    2..The bees do not "like" the break in functional comb between frames of the Lang.
    Some might consider the actions of the bees in this test actually supporting either of the above opinions a bit of a stretch, but it was pretty much as expected. The colony in all shallows saw no advantage to building downward, which is normal, and instead expanded laterally across the whole top shallow. The colony with the deep below only drew a few frames in the shallow at the top before jumping the gap and drawing full frames below in the deep. Think about it.

    We moved from double deeps a single deep and the rest shallows to take advantage of those preferences. Expansion and contraction of the broodnest takes place in the shallows and the deep remains brood through the process. How many threads have you seen where the broodnest was in the upper deep in the fall? Doesn't happen here.

    Walt

  4. #24
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    Quote Originally Posted by wcubed View Post
    The opinions in question:
    1..The bees prefer to rear brood in a deep, when the alternative is a shallow.
    2..The bees do not "like" the break in functional comb between frames of the Lang.
    Some might consider the actions of the bees in this test actually supporting either of the above opinions a bit of a stretch, but it was pretty much as expected. The colony in all shallows saw no advantage to building downward, which is normal, and instead expanded laterally across the whole top shallow. The colony with the deep below only drew a few frames in the shallow at the top before jumping the gap and drawing full frames below in the deep. Think about it.
    I am trying but I see no correlation between what you tested and what conclusions you have made. I have seen 2 out of five hives have brood in the top box (5 High) in the fall. Are you saying if you don't contain the queen with an excluder she will not lay in the supers? I am not sure what you are making a claim to.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  5. #25
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    Reno, NV
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    If I got the details all sorted out correctly in my head.

    The bees in all med had no deep frame position. so they simply built horizontally filling the top box with the break between frames a seeming boundary they where reluctant to cross.

    The bees with two med on top of a deep started at the top in a med but then moved downward rather than horizontally. Supposedly they are aware of the larger frames at the bottom of the hive and this is their way of getting there faster where they prefer to be. This would lend some support to the idea that bees do have a preference for the size of frames.

    I have seen the bees do the same tunnel up the center drawing of comb in the opposite direction when it came to reaching a bottle of sugar water at the top of the hive. The impression to me was that they wanted an easier path from point A to point B and had little interest in what lay between. so they drew comb out slightly on the foundation to use as something like a ladder. But they moved nearly all that sugar water into lower boxes of the hive. I didn't realize it at that time but the bees had already built their ceiling of honey over their brood nest. and my top box was just empty space to them for a while. I didn't realize I needed to make a hole through that honey. I read Walts book and think I figured it out now.
    Stand for what you believe, even if you stand alone.

  6. #26
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    jackson county, alabama, usa
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    walt's book is the best way to get the overall picture, including the proper manipulation for optimal 'cavity dynamics'(bees making bees and honey) with repect to maximizing the expoitation of the waxes and wanes of forage availibily.

    translated: having a good working knowlege of the motivation of the bees at the time, helps to understand the colony dynamics. understanding the colony dynamics helps to make decision about how you manipulate your boxes and comb.

    the benefit to the bee is that the beekeeper is helping more than hurting by making changes to their cavity.

    the benefit to the beekeeper is less swarms, more honey.

    i don't follow walt's practices to a tee. same way with m. bush, m palmer, r. oliver.

    i am gleaning what i think are the best parts of what they do, and i am taking the best parts as they seem to be working for me, in my location.

    walt's 60 page manuscript with illustrations is the best $10 i've spent in beekeeping.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  7. #27
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    Quote Originally Posted by squarepeg View Post
    walt's 60 page manuscript with illustrations is the best $10 i've spent in beekeeping.
    That may be but I don't see what he did in this experiment has much to do with his manuscript.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  8. #28
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    Put in it's simplest form:
    The colony instincts are to build the broodnest downward from the top, filling honey in above the broodnest as they go.
    From establlishment through subsequent seasons, the broodnest remains at the bottom and in winter/spring buildup the overhead honey is above to grow into. (heat rises)

    For some colonies, their preferences interfere with their natural instincts. Lang hive design influences the natural order of their activities.

    D. Y. got it.
    Walt

  9. #29
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    Quote Originally Posted by wcubed View Post
    D. Y. got it.
    Walt
    Get what? That bees refuse to cross over the bars to raise brood? No I don't get it. I don't see that in my hives. I am not saying that it doesn't happen in your hives.

    I think bees start at the warmer surface and move away from it as the flows progress then eat their way back to the warm surface during dearth because they have no choice. If the hive is not vertical then their direction of movement is based on food. During flows they move away, during dearths they move towards. I believe any wooden obstacle in their main cavity be it a knot or a 2x4 is of little concern for the bees as long as it doesn't close off the cavity.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  10. #30
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    Clackamas Oregon
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    As the OP discussed drawn comb is gold for a beginner. I found it to be the biggest limitation for making nucs and limiting how hard I could split. I put out a swarm traps last year for as many as I felt I could risk the drawn comb (lost sleep over hanging traps) justified the risk by equating it to priming the pump. My swarms in the traps were real late and did not generate as much comb as anticipated (like Roland said they did not do as anticipated).
    A big time or commercial operator making drawn foundation may not be dollar wise but somebody working on expansion new comb is like finding gold.
    “Why do we fall, sir? So that we might learn to pick ourselves up” Alfred Pennyworth Batman Begins (2005)

  11. #31
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    Walt, the problem is that you didn't put a 5 gallon bucket of water on top of each hive. If you had, you would have immediately earned the Acebird Seal of Approval!.

    http://www.beesource.com/forums/show...ight=Hurricane


    None of those pesky quotes in this post!.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  12. #32
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    Radar,
    Saw that when it was fresh. I read them all. Almost a full time job.
    Ace bashing is an interesting diversion here on the forums. The moderators let it happen because they know Ace enjoys it. If he didn't, he would stop machine-gunning absurdities. Actually, I try not to participate in the game. He bought a copy of the manuscript and persons who have a copy get preferential treatment here.

    Ace,
    You are entitled to your opinion, regardless of how poorly founded.

    Walt

  13. #33
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    Quote Originally Posted by wcubed View Post
    All the answers will not be available until April, but we should have enough drawn comb to get real production in 2013.
    Why do you assume that wouldn't happen if you just let two normal starts go through winter? How many more drawn frames did you expect to get doing this experiment?
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  14. #34
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    Quote Originally Posted by wcubed View Post
    Ace bashing is an interesting diversion here on the forums.
    Walt, I am sorry you see my questioning as "Ace bashing". I read what you wrote in your manuscript and I think it is beneficial. I just don't think it is gospel.

    You stated very clearly in your first post what your intent was for this experiment. Then later on you bring up something totally different and as I see it not even supported by what you did.

    I can assure you I don't have any preferential treatment on Beesource.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  15. #35
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    Fort Worth, TX, USA
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    Walt,

    Essentially you stretched it farther than I did - I started with 2 nucs on april 28th, Texas flow was pretty well done by then as we had drought in April, and I fed all summer. With a swarm, a cutout and a split so far I'm holding at 5 hives, approximately double boxes of comb. Going in this afternoon to add some fondant with pollen sub and I'll check. I didn't try to crunch down into fewer hives, our flow is so short I need every bee on deck for it, or I will have no honey.

    Gypsi
    Time to be a gypsy again, 2014 will be my prep year, my bees want a better area with actual rainfall.

  16. #36
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    Quote Originally Posted by Acebird View Post
    Walt, I am sorry you see my questioning as "Ace bashing".




    BeeCurious
    Trying to think inside the box...

  17. #37
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    Quote Originally Posted by Acebird View Post
    I can assure you I don't have any preferential treatment on Beesource.
    Barry is remarkably tolerant. But sometimes he just lets loose ...

    Quote Originally Posted by Barry View Post
    Yeah, I know, but I just couldn't stand seeing another Aceism go unchallenged as if it was fact. I'm the sucker this time.


    Anyone who wants to see the original context can click the blue >> in the quote box.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  18. #38
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    Ace,
    Is American English your primary language? Read that again with you as the bashee.

    Locally, we would have to feed through the summer to get the equivalent of a double deep filled before winter. I use a deep and 2 shallows - same amount of honey. If I started 2 colonies and overwintered both, I have no drawn comb to checkerboard either in late winter.

    By starting one hive in shallows to be combined in the fall, I have 3 shallows of "honey" to extract for drawn comb in Feb. - one for checkerboarding and two for buildup nectar before repro cut off. That's about the least required for a single colony. I would feel better about the prospects if I had one more. Depends on the spring season.

    The combine has a deep and two shallows at present.

    Walt

  19. #39
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    Quote Originally Posted by wcubed View Post
    If I started 2 colonies and overwintered both, I have no drawn comb to checkerboard either in late winter.
    If you fed at the pace you were feeding these why not? I am not seeing where you are gaining comb by combining colonies. Could I not combine in the spring when it will be more apparent which colony is better assuming they both make it?

    If you start your colonies with all the same equipment you will never have an issue with comb. It is when you get roped into two different sizes from the very beginning that your hands are tied the next season. That is what most beginners face. Too late to smart.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  20. #40
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    Default Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb

    Quote Originally Posted by Acebird View Post
    If you start your colonies with all the same equipment you will never have an issue with comb. It is when you get roped into two different sizes from the very beginning that your hands are tied the next season. That is what most beginners face. Too late to smart.
    Perhaps if I quote the thread title here it will be easier for you:
    "Re: Experiment 2012/13 - Acquiring drawn comb"

    Or maybe 10 letter words are difficult for you to comprehend ... oops... "get"

    ex·per·i·ment
    c: an operation or procedure carried out under controlled conditions in order to discover an unknown effect or law, to test or establish a hypothesis, or to illustrate a known law

    http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/experiment
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

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