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Discussion Starter #1
OK, if it isn't one thing it's something else! My girls are REALLY testing me!

One of my new hives (new package in April of this year) are building in their second deep brood chamber. The problem...

It seems that on the couple of the frames they aren't building from the foundation up/out! What they are doing is going from the edges of the frame itself and building a comb across the top of the foundation that appears to be up on stilts! There is a space between the comb and the frame! So, bees are on the outside of the comb and walk around to get to the other side of the comb and not building it from the foundation... What's up with this?

Thanks!
 

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Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
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>It seems that on the couple of the frames they aren't building from the foundation up/out! What they are doing is going from the edges of the frame itself and building a comb across the top of the foundation that appears to be up on stilts! There is a space between the comb and the frame! So, bees are on the outside of the comb and walk around to get to the other side of the comb and not building it from the foundation... What's up with this?

I'll bet you either have the frames too far apart (not tightly together) or you have plastic foundation or both. If it's full of brood, and if it's plastic, I'd probalby move it above an excluder to emerge and then scrape off the bad comb.
 

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On plastic frames, particularly dipped ones, it helps to turn the frames upside down before you put them in, and run a hive tool along the underside of the top bar. I found that a ridge of wax had collected on the underside, right at the edge. The bees didn't really like the plastic to start with, and used this ridge as a comb guide to build comb exactly like you describe.
 

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This also happened to me, but I was using the duragilt sheet plastic foundation with the wax cells imprinted onto it. My bees stole the wax from the outer frames, effectively stripping it down to the flat plastic. They can't draw on this, so they drew off of it and made a real mess. The foundation comes standard with the Dandant beginning beekeeping kit, and I certainly won't use it again. My best luck so far, and I've only done this for two years so take it with a grain of salt, has been starter strips of wax and letting them draw their own.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
OK, thanks. So, I';m guessing it isn't a bad or super unusual problem.... I'll be checking them again this weekend to see what they are presenting me with next....

Thanks!
 
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