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Bee space issue or other?

1740 Views 6 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Tommy Hodge
One of my hives continues to build comb between the hive bodies. This makes pulling frames and inspection difficult. The set up is two deep (10 frame) hive bodies under a 10 frame medium honey super added last week…I suspect this is a matter of too much bee space between the frames of each hive body? I may change out one of the hive bodies on next inspection to see if that fixes the problem…what have been your experiences and solutions to this problem. Thanks!
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They will build burr (or ladder) comb between frames all the time. If it is seeming excessive I would recommend going over the measurements on your boxes.
Sounds like one or more boxes has top bee space, and the others have bottom bee space.

When used together there is too much space and the bees tie them together.

Could be Cleo…I may have to trim one of the boxes down a bit…just inconvenient…!
Are all of the boxes from the same supplier? Is that one colony a different breed of bee? Some bees build more propolis, maybe they build more burr comb too. But I really suspect bee space isn't right.
If you have plastic frames they will always burr between the boxes no matter what the space. The top bars are too thin to discourage this. "it is known"

“…that very practical Canadian bee-keeper, J.B. Hall, showed me his thick top-bars, and told me that they prevented the building up of so much burr-comb between the top-bars and the sections…and I am very glad that at the present day it can be dispensed with by having top-bars 1-1/8 inch wide and 7/8 inch thick, with a space of 1/4 inch between top-bar and section. Not that there is an entire absence of burr-combs, but near enough to it so that one can get along much more comfortably than with the slat honey-board. At any rate there is no longer the killing of bees that there was every day the dauby honey-board was replaced.”--C.C. Miller, Fifty Years Among the Bees.

“Q. Do you believe that a half-inch thick brood-frame top-bar will tend to prevent the bees building burr-comb on such frames, as well as the three-quarter inch top-bar? Which kind do you use?
A. I do not believe that the one-half inch will prevent burr-combs quite as well as the three-quarter. Mine are seven-eighths.”--C.C. Miller, A Thousand Answers to Beekeeping Questions
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Sqkcrk - yes, both boxes are from the same supplier. And, this colony is the same breed as the other colony in the bee yard. Checking bee space measurements this weekend.

Michael - interesting...good read…Mr. Hall nail the essence of my problem and that is killing brood upon inspection...thanks for frames are all wood and top-bars are 1" x 3/4"…not sure about the bee space between top-bar and section…apparently top bar thickness is as important as 1/4" bee space…
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