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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    JACKSON OHIO
    Posts
    485

    Default Re: Comb rotation - what do you do?

    no comb rotation for 8 years

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Bunker Hill, IL
    Posts
    495

    Default Re: Comb rotation - what do you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by WI-beek View Post
    This is exactly the type of thing I wish I could devote my life to, testing theory as such as this.
    it frustrates me to see people attempt science only in a really poor way.

    Seems the simple answer is for someone to have comb samples tested in a gas chromatograph over a period of years building up a real data set of how (or if) chemicals build up in used brood comb. You would then have real values of chemical buildup to put with observations of hive health instead of just guessing at some arbitrary period of time. You could also correlate chemical buildup in comb with chemical load of pollen brought in by bees by regular testing of pollen from pollen traps. Is there a strong correlation to chemical contamination of pollen brought in vs chemical build up in the comb?

    without tracking of something like the above (a hard number) then your results will be subject to so many other variables as to make any results a subject of endless debate on forums for forever in the future.

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
    Posts
    9,219

    Default Re: Comb rotation - what do you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by WI-beek View Post
    This is exactly the type of thing I wish I could devote my life to, testing theory as such as this.
    If you want to test the theory. Find out how long a feral hive will last before the bees take off or die out. I would use that cycle as the number of years between cycling out old comb. The problem is foundation is not new comb. Secondly, bees come back and reuse the old comb after a fashion. So maybe the comb has to lay fallow for a few years and then it is good again.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  4. #24
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    2,747

    Default Re: Comb rotation - what do you do?

    Analyzing what's in a comb is one thing, figuring out how it interacts with the bees is another.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Citrus County, Florida, United States
    Posts
    258

    Default Re: Comb rotation - what do you do?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    >Beekeepers who kept bees in colonies where the average age of the brood
    comb in their operation was less than 1 year old, lost on average 7.5 more
    colonies per hundred when compared to beekeepers who managed bees in
    colonies where the average age of the brood comb in their operation was
    between 1 and 2 years old.

    Then it's better to have old comb...
    Only if you think it's all ABOUT or IN the COMB. The process of actually building the comb (thus comb less than 1 year) has its implications and impacts. Clearly, packages put onto comb have an advantage in that they don't actually have to BUILD the comb and can start laying and stocking quicker, thus the impact upon colony survival. This is also one possible advantage of nucs over packages. Again, data interpretation through pure numbers alone isn't going to find all the answers.

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Walker, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    883

    Default Re: Comb rotation - what do you do?

    There's another factor from the survey that I really don't know how to analyze, namely reusing brood comb that's been taken out of production:

    Beekeepers who reported reusing old brood comb in their colonies reported losing on average 12.6 more colonies per 100 (49.5% more) than beekeepers who did not report reusing brood comb that had been taken out of production or purchased.
    I'm not quite sure about the meaning of "taken out of production" in this context. Don't most of us move comb around from hive to hive and store any excess comb until we need it? Sometimes it's needed in a few days, a week, or just later in the season as the brood nest contracts and expands. Don't we all strive to have some comb on hand that is already drawn but empty? So I have no idea how ( or even IF) to apply this particular stat. It seems like it is saying this is a dangerous method and leads to losses--but that doesn't make any sense to me!

    Again, data interpretation through pure numbers alone isn't going to find all the answers.
    I agree. But it should at least point us in helpful directions, don't you think? The problems arise trying to figure out what the stats actually mean, or if they mean anything at all!



    Rusty
    Rusty Hills Farm -- home of AQHA A Rusty Zipper & Rusty's Bees ( LC and T)

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Rupert, Idaho, USA
    Posts
    86

    Default Re: Comb rotation - what do you do?

    without tracking of something like the above (a hard number) then your results will be subject to so many other variables as to make any results a subject of endless debate on forums for forever in the future.
    ANY results no matter how obtained will be debated by beekeepers endlessly on forums.

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Citrus County, Florida, United States
    Posts
    258

    Default Re: Comb rotation - what do you do?

    @Rusty
    "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics."
    - Mark Twain

    The numbers/data can point us in the direction, but answers...

    @dirt road

    Debate can often be solved through scientific method. There doesn't seem to be a lot of money for that in beekeeping so one has to go with what they "know", have been told from trusted sources or what they learn themselves. Fortunately, bees seem to be tolerant and adaptable so there seems to be a lot of room at the margins.

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Chippew County, WI, USA
    Posts
    650

    Default Re: Comb rotation - what do you do?

    "it frustrates me to see people attempt science only in a really poor way."

    Thats because you frustrate yourself by a lack of observation skills. I made no reference to comb contamination!

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