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Thread: Drone Comb

  1. #1
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    Default Drone Comb

    Took this pic of a nice drone comb, a comb like this can add 2,000 plus drones to the mating pool each brood cycle

    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Drone Comb

    A good sign. When I find a frame like that from one of my better queens I pull it to put and hatch out it a different hive and give them a drawn out drone frame to refill.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Drone Comb

    Yes good idea.

    I make these frames by putting an empty frames with starter strips in a hive, there are hives near my nuc yards and the ones that are making the right kind of drones get two of these combs.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Drone Comb

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    Yes good idea.

    I make these frames by putting an empty frames with starter strips in a hive, there are hives near my nuc yards and the ones that are making the right kind of drones get two of these combs.
    I was caught short-handed for frames one time this year when I went out to the hives, and didn't have enough frames ready to fill one of the supers I had just put on, so I put a few foundation-less wooden frames. They all turned out as drone comb like this.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Drone Comb

    Cool. Am I correct in thinking they will only do that for a few weeks in the spring?
    5Y-25H-T-Z6b-0 winter losses in '14

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Drone Comb

    They do it all season, but once the hives have enough drones they stop making more and there will be little drone brood, then the drone population drops and they haul honey out of the drone combs and raise some more drones.

    If you are past the time when you are mating queens you can always pull the drone combs, along with any mites that are in there.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Drone Comb

    I usually just move them outside and up where they will be back filled with honey. I could probably do better on IPM than I do.
    5Y-25H-T-Z6b-0 winter losses in '14

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Drone Comb

    Quote Originally Posted by David LaFerney View Post
    I usually just move them outside and up where they will be back filled with honey. I could probably do better on IPM than I do.
    Drone comb only attracts 60% of mites... Yet they still need to be fed like all other larvae. Can't say I'm really sold on the idea of culling so much (drone) brood to get such a low percentage of the mites. You also get the risk of greatly increasing the mite count if something happens and you don't remove the comb in time.

    And it just feels wrong to cull so many bees... I kind of like the drones, cute fuzzy little critters. And a waste of the resources the bees put into feeding and warming all of that brood...

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Drone Comb

    Waste of effort if you have bees that cull the mites on their own.
    DarJones - 44 years, 10 colonies (max 40), sideliner, treatment free since 2005, 11 frame broodnest, small cell

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Drone Comb

    Those look to hatch at about the same time, must be a real sight when they all hit the landing board and start their figure 8 flights!
    Julysun elevation 23 feet. 4 Hives, 2 years.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Drone Comb

    Yes it's actually pretty amazing how loud a hive is when it's full of drones and it's flying time for them.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Drone Comb

    A comb full of brood is a beautiful thing, drone or worker.
    Mark Berninghausen "Ships at a distance have every man's wish on board." Zora Neale Hurston

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Drone Comb

    Quote Originally Posted by Fusion_power View Post
    Waste of effort if you have bees that cull the mites on their own.
    Where do I get me a cpl hundred queens whose offspring do that?
    Mark Berninghausen "Ships at a distance have every man's wish on board." Zora Neale Hurston

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Drone Comb

    Or 5-10?
    5Y-25H-T-Z6b-0 winter losses in '14

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Drone Comb

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    Where do I get me a cpl hundred queens whose offspring do that?
    Theoretically, any VSH breeder?

    I wouldn't rely on that alone, but that's good enough for me not to cull my drone brood.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Drone Comb

    A friend of mine has been producing queens from II VSH breeders for long enough that his local population has to be relatively saturated with those genes. They are good queens, and it seems to help a good bit with mites - I don't have sufficient means of measurement to say to what extent. But VSH alone isn't a magic bullet. That's what he says, and my limited observations agree. He counts mites and treats when needed.
    5Y-25H-T-Z6b-0 winter losses in '14

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