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Thread: drawn comb

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    merrimack nh usa
    Posts
    7

    Default drawn comb

    Hello,
    This may be a silly question, but I am still a bee-ginner. We had an unfortunate hive die already this winter (NH) and wish to purchase new package and local Queen this spring, but are thinking of transitioning the two deeps to three mediums. My question would be, would it be a mistake to use the drawn comb from this hive's honey super, which is a medium box, in the new medium hive body we are thinking of hiving the new package in? I imagine comb from a honey super has different comb than a brood box frame, for example, no drone cells. If it would be a mistake to use ALL comb from the super, would it be alright to alternate fresh foundation with this drawn comb in the new medium brood box?
    Thank you so much for any advice.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Imperial, MO, USA
    Posts
    167

    Default Re: drawn comb

    Its fine to use comb from a medium honey super to fill a medium brood box. I prefer not to to the opposite - using brood comb for honey, but there isn't anything stopping you from moving it the direction you're going.
    No there won't be any drone comb, but they'll make that where/when they need it. If you're really concerned about drone comb you could put one frame of new foundation in there and they'll draw out what they need.
    "Teach your kids to hunt and fish, and you won't have to hunt for your kids"
    Four Ridge Apiaries www.fourridgebees.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Baker Oregon
    Posts
    2,290

    Default Re: drawn comb

    The drawn comb will give the new package quite a good jump start.
    Dan Hayden 4 Years. 9 hives. Tx Free. USDA Zone 5b.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Springfield, MO, USA
    Posts
    102

    Default Re: drawn comb

    As the others have said, it is alright to use the old comb - as long as you're sure the other hive did not die of a disease like American Foul Brood.

    I know several BKs who do not prefer to use brood comb for honey supers, and I respect their preference. Just know that many of us use brood combs in supers because the brood comb does not affect the honey in any way. It is a preference, not a rule.

    The deep frames can be used in the medium supers as well. Cut them off so they are the same height as the medium frames. I have altered many a frame this way when necessary. Use one of the medium frames as a template to get the proper height. It would be a terrible shame to waste 18 good drawn frames.

    That said, I would caution you to keep the deeps since you are so far north. Bees in colder climates do better on larger frames i.e. deeps vs shallower frames. Bees seem to prefer larger combs when they can get them.
    Jeffrey Maddox
    www.MaddoxBees.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    North Berwick, Maine, USA
    Posts
    45

    Default Re: drawn comb

    Yes. And as Maddox said, don't waste the deep comb! If you are not going to use the deeps, cut the comb down and tie it in or just chop the frames.

    I'm further north of you and use deeps but I'm in the minority these days. There are lots of folks up here in mediums and they do just fine.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    5,429

    Default Re: drawn comb

    Wildbee I'm just wondering why you think there might be a problem.

    Was the comb in the honey super drawn on comb foundation, and if so, standard foundation or small cell foundation? Long as the cells where drawn out true to the foundation, and that is the size foundation you want in the brood nest, then no worries.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    merrimack nh usa
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: drawn comb

    Thank you, Oldtimer, I guess what I was worried about was whether or not honey comb is different in any way than brood comb, as in more uniform, or too uniform, but now from what I am reading here, that doesn't seem to be an issue. This comb was drawn on standard cell size foundation. Some day we may attempting transition to small cell size foundation, or natural comb, but are keeping it one step at a time. Thank you so much for your advice.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    merrimack nh usa
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: drawn comb

    Thank you everyone for your help and advice!

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