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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
When I performed my first hive inspection (about 10 days ago) I noticed a quarter sized hole in the foundation. This was frame number 5 and the hole was at the bottom of the wax foundation. It did not look like anything was eating it. It almost looked as if it had just melted away. Any idea how this happened? This is one of two hives I started this year from package bees. They are my first two hives so I am a beginner. I plan on doing another inspection in a day or two depending on the weather.

Thanks
 

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The girls are the likely culprits. I've seen them make communication holes on the side of the foundation. Sometimes they deconstruct part of the foundation for use elsewhere.
 

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Several of my drawn out frames have quarter-sized holes at one or both bottom corners. I just figured the girls had created some shortcuts because the comb around the holes looked perfectly sound.
 

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Question about the hole. When I put my foundation (wax with metal edge) in my frames to hive my pkgs May 3rd all my foundation had a precut hole in them. I installed with hole to top and all on one side of hive body (i'll check that next inspection). I thought it was there so the bee's could get to frame to frame. My question is this. Will they build comb over that hole or do they leave it for passage?
 

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They are normal. Some folks call them communication holes, I think of them as shortcuts from one side to the other without having to go all the way around the frame.

Perfectly natural.
 

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I installed with hole to top and all on one side of hive body (i'll check that next inspection).

I think the holes in Duragilt are supposed to go to the bottom of the frame.

Will they build comb over that hole or do they leave it for passage?

Sometimes they leave it, and sometimes they draw comb over it.
 

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Yes the foundation was duragilt. It seemed like nice stuff. I did have to trim to fit in my frames. When I install foundation for my second hive body I will put hole to bottom. What are your thoughts about keeping all the holes on same side of hive body? Does it matter?
 

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Yes the foundation was duragilt. It seemed like nice stuff.

Seemed being the key word.

It is wax covered plastic. As soon as the wax gets flaked off the plastic, the bees refuse to draw comb back over the plastic. Do a search on here for Duragilt. Other than ease of installation, there are not many good things said about it.
 

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you might want to consider removing the frames that they haven't started drawing out &replacing with wax or plastic foundation.I was going to order a bunch of duraguilt&a friend of mine showed me why he was throwing away 200 pieces of it .He said it was great stuff the 1st year&seperated after that.The bees burr combed a whole brood box
 

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i am using wired foundation this year and my bees have completely chewed away the foundation around the wire about 1/4 inch either side on 1 frame dead center. They make communication holes and shape it as they want...
 

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All advice is good. I am sooo new at this. I see talk about plastic foundation. Why would the bees build on plastic but not duragilt after wax comes off? Also how does wax come off if it is built with comb. Does it happen to honey foundation during spinning and no worries with brood supers?
 

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The cell pattern is imprinted on the wax coating the duragilt plastic. The plastic in the duragilt is almost smooth. It just has dimples in the plastic sheet.

Plastic foundation has a much deeper cell pattern on it. This is why bees will draw comb on the plastic foundation, but not the duragilt.

If a comb gets bumped during winter, cold wax can shatter, and chunks of comb can break away from the duragilt. If wax moths get into your combs, when you pull the webs away from the frame, you will be down to the plastic.

The only was I have found to fix damaged duragilt is to cut out the damaged area with a knife, and treat it like a foundationless frame. The bees will draw new comb to fix the hole in the comb if you cut out the duragilt.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Just a quick note relative to my original post. During my inspection on Saturday I noticed the bees have closed the hole back up and have drawn out cells in that location.

Go figure!
 

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As some one who used Dura-junk its great the first year but heaven only help if the bees remove the wax. they will never redraw the comb. I like Rite cell plastic foundation.
 

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could they possibly be doing it to promote better ventalation?? Mine are starting to do it as well, from the bottom to about 3 inches up on the sides, I figured they know what theyre doing and wax was probably needed somewhere else.
 
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