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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Installed a 3# Carniolan package last week in my top bar hive along with a quart of 1:1. Did a very quick today to be sure the queen was released (which she was) but did not see any comb. Many bees were festooning, however. They had maybe taken about 30 oz of the 1:1 during a time when the weather has been mixed - spotty showers with temps in high 50s/mid 60s during the day and 40s at night.

Curious as to how long it generally might take a package to build the equivalent of one bar of comb? Any benchmarks I can use to gauge their progress?

Thanks,
Kevin
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
It is a ten bar space which is approximately 10" high, 18" across the top, and 7" across the bottom.

A related question - how soon should I be seeing any comb production as I did not see any on my quick four day inspection?
 

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Hi Kevin - I'm out of my depth on this one, as we don't have packages over here - but 3 lbs sounds like a good-sized cluster of bees - and so I'd have expected some comb to have been drawn by now - at least a few inches.

On the assumption (rightly or wrongly) that 3 lbs is roughly equivalent to the number of bees in a 5-frame nuc, I'm wondering if reducing the cavity size might help the bees keep up the necessary temperature required for them to work wax ?

Hopefully somebody with first-hand experience with packages will be along shortly to give a more informed opinion.
Good luck
LJ
 

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I'd bet that there was comb being built under those festooning bees. It sounds like they are on their way. :thumbsup: Check again in a few days.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Good suggestion, Little John, to reduce the cavity a bit to see if that will raise internal hive temps a bit and provide an assist. I think I will give it several more days as I don't want to be in there too often too soon.

I've just seen these videos of people inspecting their top bar hives after three days and they show beautiful comb being built out. Mine is not like that, but also perhaps there was some comb under the festooning that I just did not see. I can only hope.

I am not feeding a protein supplement, but would that aid in production? I don't think so, but thought I would ask.

Kevin
 

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I'd compress to 5-6 bars and feed.
Nest temperature (~high bee density) and food should do the trick.
 
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