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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Dickens County, TX, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default cutout comb orientation

    How important is it to orient the comb the same way it came out of the hive?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Danbury, CT
    Posts
    2,887

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    I always do, but as long as it is upside down or right side up and not sideways, the bees do not care most of the time. If it is already installed wrong it is too late to worry about it.
    Always question Conventional Wisdom.

  3. #3

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    I try to always keep it upright. If you look at a comb from the side profile you'll note the cels slope upwards from base to face (foundation to caps). I've read that if you put it in upside down the bees will allow brood to hatch out of it but then won't use it anymore. Again I've only read this. The most important thing is to make sure you maintain proper bee space when everything gets moved around!
    After 20 months I'm over a 20 hives and growing. See my videos! http://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8fVrmUsyYlRuASdX6UQk1g

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Dickens County, TX, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    I put it in side ways because it fit nicely into the frame that way. That night I remembered that bees angle the cells slightly up, but I couldn't do anything about it for a while. It has been a couple of weeks. I need to check on them.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Casey, Il, USA
    Posts
    1,020

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    We put one in sideways on accident and they never touched it, I finally put it in a super and it wasn't untill they had almost ran out of room before they started re working it they finally filled and capped it

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Ft Myers, Fl 33967
    Posts
    161

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    It is rather important that the comb be put into a box in the same orentation that it came out of the nest. Not only up and down but left to right and in the same sequence. If you look through a cell at the bottom you will see a "peace symbol" (or a Y if you prefer); turn the comb around and look through the cell you will see an upside down symbol. All the comb on one side of the center comb will be orientated one way and the comb on the other side of center will be orientated the other way. I think all the "Y" face out from center but i could be mistaken.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Dickens County, TX, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    I guess bees do what they want. I did the cutout on labor day, and when I checked them today they have a patch of capped brood and most of the rest is uncapped honey. It was almost all capped brood when I did the cutout. My son took some pics. I will post them later.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Dickens County, TX, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    Here are some pics. I need to help my son with his photography.
    DSC_0978b.jpg
    DSC_0981b.jpg
    DSC_0977.jpg
    Attached Images Attached Images

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Rockford, MI
    Posts
    2,534

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    Orientation is key to a successful, thriving hive especially after a cutout. The 10 degree slope upward keeps the all important nectar in the cell so it can be stored and finally capped as honey. Not to mention eggs, larvae and sometimes royal jelly.
    If bees wont be able to use it the may just leave and start over..... yeah it's important.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Dickens County, TX, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Beeman View Post
    Orientation is key to a successful, thriving hive especially after a cutout. The 10 degree slope upward keeps the all important nectar in the cell so it can be stored and finally capped as honey. Not to mention eggs, larvae and sometimes royal jelly.
    If bees wont be able to use it the may just leave and start over..... yeah it's important.
    I actually went to the hive to remove the cutout comb, but since they are using it, I guess I will remove it in the spring when they move up to the medium above it. It has 9 frames of of capped honey.

  11. #11

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    I had always read that the bees will still use the combs for honey/pollen, but the queen will not lay in them anymore. Sounds as if that's what's been observed here. Thanks for sharing!
    After 20 months I'm over a 20 hives and growing. See my videos! http://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8fVrmUsyYlRuASdX6UQk1g

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Dickens County, TX, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Brueggen View Post
    I had always read that the bees will still use the combs for honey/pollen, but the queen will not lay in them anymore.

    If that is true then that capped brood in the picture above is at least 35 days old.
    Last edited by hopeful; 10-08-2013 at 09:25 AM. Reason: add quote

  13. #13

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    Haha, touché. Maybe it is! Have you seen any of it hatch? I guess more importantly, are there eggs/larva in any of that comb now? Or is it ALL capped honey now? Granted that could be a product of back-filling and still not settle the argument.
    After 20 months I'm over a 20 hives and growing. See my videos! http://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8fVrmUsyYlRuASdX6UQk1g

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Dickens County, TX, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    I found no eggs, only capped brood and uncapped honey in the cutout frames. I hope this brood is recent or I may not have a queen.

  15. #15

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    If the capped brood is dead, the caps should appear sunken, and normally the live bees will remove them. Use a toothpick and open a few cells to see if the larva inside is still white and fresh or if it's dead/rotten. Or just check back after a couple weeks (the max length the brood is capped) and see if it's still capped or has hatched.
    After 20 months I'm over a 20 hives and growing. See my videos! http://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8fVrmUsyYlRuASdX6UQk1g

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Dickens County, TX, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    Thanks for the info. I am a new beek. I have learned a lot from this site.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Dickens County, TX, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    Here is the best close up I have of the brood.
    DSC_0977c.jpg

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    5,956

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    Michael Bush has a nice page summarizing bee brood development timing:

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesmath.htm
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Tangipahoa,LA, USA
    Posts
    30

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    Quote Originally Posted by hopeful View Post
    Here is the best close up I have of the brood.
    DSC_0977c.jpg
    I know I'm an old fart with bad eyes, but isn't that eggs in adjacent cells?

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Dickens County, TX, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default Re: cutout comb orientation

    Quote Originally Posted by BeeThere View Post
    I know I'm an old fart with bad eyes, but isn't that eggs in adjacent cells?
    I hadn't noticed that. The picture has so much glare in it, I just assumed it was glare. I wished I had more experience inspecting. I wish I had someone close to teach me.

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