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I have research foundation and frames on the internet to see which would be the best to uses in a hive from what I read that Plastic is better than wax and foundationless is the best because it improve colony health is this true









thanks allan
 

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Debatable, and the answer is multifaceted. Firstly, the entire wax supply is saturated with chemicals that have a negative effect on bee health. Starting with plastic you can reduce that to a negligible degree, but that plastic is still coated with a tiny amount of wax from the commercial supply -if you are just starting out you probably dont have a stash to use yourself yet. Foundationless is great because you can reduce this contamination even more and if using crush and strain harvesting techniques you can build up your stash of clean wax. Foundationless also allows the bees to put drone cells where they want them. It has been proven that having a proper drone population reduces overall colony stress. This comes with a caveat. More drones will also mean more varroa which will have a severe negative effect on the colonies health. So, a slightly stressed out colony from lack of drones will not cause them to die out, whereas a varroa infestation will. So take that for what it is.
 

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I agree with Honeydrunk (I assume when he speaks of the wax supply saturated with chemicals he is referring to purchased wax foundation). Michael Bush has opined about this, specifically about small cell size having a beneficial affect on reducing varroa, but do controlled studies affirm his belief? (I am still a skeptic) As Honeydrunk stated, in my experience I sometimes found one comb with a large portion of drone brood. I think the bees probably perform better with foundationless, compared with their having to deal with wax foundation and/or plastic frames.

I went to a large degree to foundationless last year, with results that delighted me for the most part. Unfortunately in one super we put 9 frames in a 10-frame box, and separated the frames to allow for what we believed would be wider combs. The girls ran cross comb all over the place; it was not very funny during last summer's inspection, but it makes me chuckle now. However, in the deep brood chamber of another colony I squeezed an extra frame into the box. I had shaved the frames down to 1-1/4 inch; the resulting combs were orderly and straight, and beautiful.

Hope my rambling helps.

Phil
 

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Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
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>I have research foundation and frames on the internet to see which would be the best to uses in a hive from what I read that Plastic is better than wax and foundationless is the best because it improve colony health is this true

There are certainly a lot of opinions on the topic. I found that natural cell size was necessary to handle Varroa. Clean wax is a bonus. Drones probably play a part in all of this as well. I would guess my typical hive has 25% drone comb.
 

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>if I may ask which foundation do you prefer Mr. Bush

None is the most appealing to me. I have a lot of PF120s which are plastic 4.9mm and a lot of foundationless and a fair amount of wax dipped PermaComb (fully drawn plastic) and a few hundred Honey Super Cell.
 

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I prefer pure beewax foundation. My bees seem to love it more than plastic. It gives them room to build like everyone says, what they want. I have noticed a healthier and more productive bee.
 

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The chemical load of wax increases with each passing year. If you are hesitant to destroy the comb after four years there will be more chemicals than in commercially produced wax foundation, even on an organic farm unless it is 5 miles in diameter, and there are absolutely no chemical compounds used for any reason. We even find chemicals on analysis that have been off the market for many years. On and near the organic farms (which are numerous around the University) there are more than a dozen chemicals found in untreated hives.
Foundationless cycled out every couple years or less is the best right now.
 
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