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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Tipton, TN, USA

    Default Re: My foundationless experiment

    I think you will find that bees do whatever they want.

    I have hives :
    foundationless that were drawn perfectly.
    foundationless that were partly drawn with huge holes.
    ignored wax foundation and drawn comb on the side of the hive box.
    draw double stacked comb next to plastic
    draw 20+ little cross combs instead of with the cells.
    just refuse to touch any plastic.

    So far, I haven't found a pattern. If your bees draw the one piece plastic, then I'd go with whatever you like.

    I personally, I have a mixture of all three and still can't make up my mind... LOL

    I like plastic from the ability to level set, if they decide to bugger up the drawing. But generally, they seem to wax better.

    I have 100 something pf combs in the garage that are about to get a liberal roller brush painting of wax...

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Crystal Water, Queensland, Australia

    Default Re: My foundationless experiment

    Thanks for setting up the experiment. I plan to do more of them too.
    from the Bee House -
    40 years - +/- 20 H - TF - Subtropical

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Romania, Sibiu

    Default Re: My foundationless experiment

    I use both foundation and foundation less and could see the way they are both drawn in my nucs. I'm very relaxed on using both ways but for now I really have no choice but giving them foundation less (lack of time).
    I have partially drawn foundation: they don't look very well... and natural comb. I like the way they build it and the way the queen starts laying in the partially drawn comb. I guess both ways are heavily dependent on the flow and queen.
    If I were to remain a hobbyist I would choose foundation less for sure. Why hurry?
    Dfa (Humid continental warm summer climate)

  4. #24
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Rockford, MI

    Default Re: My foundationless experiment

    I for one like the idea that experiments, no matter what they are, have conclusions and findings at the end. Even more, I like the idea that people are willing to take the time to perform the experiments and share the conclusions and findings with us.
    My dog.... lol


  5. #25

    Default Re: My foundationless experiment

    Quote Originally Posted by grozzie2 View Post
    I didn't realize it was a fight.
    Nor did I. I was replying to this comment made earlier.
    Quote Originally Posted by Barry View Post
    I have no dog in this fight, just going on my own experience.
    Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted. - Emerson

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Searcy, AR, USA

    Default Re: My foundationless experiment

    An experiment with larger numbers would perhaps provide a more accurate test. Now if we could find a beekeeper with 20 or so hives in the same yard who was interested enough to put entire supers of foundationless frames on 10 hives, and full supers of plastic on the other ten at exactly the same time, we might see more decisive results. This way the foundationless frames could be constructed just the way they are normally used instead of being just a hole in a plastic frame.

    There would still be variables, but much more balanced results than with one frame split in half or by choosing just two hives in the same yard. The law of large numbers has always been accepted to be more accurate in mathematics/science.
    Rick Brooks: Keeping bees and pastoring a church are similar...I try to keep them both from swarming.

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Santa Monica, CA, USA

    Default Re: My foundationless experiment

    I needed to hive my swarm and I was not prepared. So I grabbed what I can find - medium box. In 10-frame box I had 8 empty frames (foundationless) + 1 with plastic foundation + empty space (I run out of any frames). They started in the empty space creating elaborated bridge to the neighboring frame, so comb was in the place of absent frame. Than they start building in other empty frames and there is tiny-tiny piece of disorganized comb attached to the plastic
    Since I am a hobbyist, I have time to observe my bees. Recently I come to conclusion that bees learned how to build the comb. In my situation - they learned how to build straight comb on top bars. I helped them to understand the concept by straightening the comb for a while. Now, my bees made 95% comb straight without any interference from my side. From another hand, my bees do not know how to built comb on foundation - they are confused
    If bees originated from hive with plastic foundation, they likely to be more comfortable with such type of foundation. The same - for the wax foundation etc. So, my current theory is that my bees can learn and keep this knowledge. My bees are building straight comb on any properly spaced horizontal bar with or without any guides. Swarms of my bees do the same. There are some examples below. PS I think pics #1&2 are the same bar at different stage of developing.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by cerezha; 06-11-2014 at 01:24 AM.
    Серёжа, Sergey

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