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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Fair Grove,MO,USA
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    1,665

    Default Drone Cells in Comb Honey

    I run 10 to 15 comb honey supers (med. and shallow supers) for cut comb and chunk honey sales at our local farmers market. The last couple of years i have drone cells on the bottom half of some of the comb honey frames? These frames are above the queen excluder and it's always drone brood no worker cells, an old time beekeeper (older than me) told me that in strong hives with several supers on, that you can have some laying worker activity in the upper supers? Makes sense to me, but was wondering if there could be something else going on here and how to prevent it?
    PS. i have at times had this problem in honey supers above the excluder also?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Athens, OH
    Posts
    2,740

    Default Re: Drone Cells in Comb Honey

    You could market it as "extra meaty!".
    Buy the ticket, take the ride. -H.S. Thompson

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Kingsport, Sullivan, Tennessee
    Posts
    789

    Default Re: Drone Cells in Comb Honey

    Quote Originally Posted by cg3 View Post
    You could market it as "extra meaty!".
    Be sure to charge extra for the protein content. -js

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Fair Grove,MO,USA
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    1,665

    Default Re: Drone Cells in Comb Honey

    Where's Michal Palmer when you need him, as for you two above, i don't take special orders but i'll make an acception for you.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
    Posts
    10,136

    Default Re: Drone Cells in Comb Honey

    I think Michael Bush will tell you that there is a small percentage of laying workers in every queen right hive.

    You could core them out and stick a good and plenty in the hole for color. Might be a new marketing scheme.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,585

    Default Re: Drone Cells in Comb Honey

    Quote Originally Posted by brooksbeefarm View Post
    Where's Michal Palmer when you need him
    Don't know what to say. I get drones in comb honey too, on occasion. I don't use excluders.

    One thought...

    I only use the best producing colonies to make comb honey. Two extracting supers go on in late April. In early June, colonies that are really filling these first supers get a comb honey super under the first two. There must be a strong flow on, or there will be drone brood in the comb. You want the comb honey supers on just before the flush of the flow, and off as soon as the comb is finished.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Rajshahi, Bangladesh
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Drone Cells in Comb Honey

    Have you got your problem solved yet ?
    Hi all..I am Emdad.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Fair Grove,MO,USA
    Posts
    1,665

    Default Re: Drone Cells in Comb Honey

    Thanks Mike, It's no big deal to cut the drone cells out for me because i don't have that many supers to deal with. I can see where a laying worker could be at work, i had another beekeeper tell me that he thought workers would carry eggs above the queen excluder? i didn't buy that. Just wondered if others had this happen.Mike, if you put the comb honey super under the extracting supers (over the brood nest) without a excluder, how do you keep the queen out? I do this with an excluder and then when they get most of the comb drawn out of the comb honey super i move it to the top for less tracking. I have a top entrance on all my hives.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Evansville, IN
    Posts
    2,566

    Default Re: Drone Cells in Comb Honey

    You might consider a frame of drone brood (foundationless or green foundation type) so the bees can make all the drones they want in the brood boxes. My brother and I get a short row or two of drones in the lowest honey super in the spring in hives that don't have much drone comb, and I suspect it's because there isn't anywhere to make drones besides the honey supers and between the brood boxes.

    Only in the spring, never see drone brood in the summer in the honey supers. Maybe we are lucky.

    No excluder since we extract everything.

    Peter

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,585

    Default Re: Drone Cells in Comb Honey

    Well, I would look at the brood to determine where the eggs came from. Is the resulting brood drone? Would the bees carry only drone eggs through an excluder. Doubtful.

    It's the strength of the flow that keeps the queen out of the super.


    Quote Originally Posted by brooksbeefarm View Post
    Thanks Mike, It's no big deal to cut the drone cells out for me because i don't have that many supers to deal with. I can see where a laying worker could be at work, i had another beekeeper tell me that he thought workers would carry eggs above the queen excluder? i didn't buy that. Just wondered if others had this happen.Mike, if you put the comb honey super under the extracting supers (over the brood nest) without a excluder, how do you keep the queen out? I do this with an excluder and then when they get most of the comb drawn out of the comb honey super i move it to the top for less tracking. I have a top entrance on all my hives.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
    Posts
    10,136

    Default Re: Drone Cells in Comb Honey

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Palmer View Post
    It's the strength of the flow that keeps the queen out of the super.
    Do you or should you keep empty supers off during summer flows and run the risk of a swarm or do you even care if you get brood in the supers?
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

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