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With a strong hive and a good flow, how long does it normally take for the colony to draw a frame of foundation? Thanks.
 

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Boy it really varies.........

Heavy flow will kick it into gear. A day or two.

Swarms are amazing at how fast they can draw.
 

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I never really looked at it from a frame by frame basis. But I know with ideal conditions, a box (ten frames) can be drawn in about a week. But I don't count on that happening all the time.

Drawing in the brood chamber is sometimes paced by the queens need for room. And comb drawing in supers is paced by the fact they will fill it in as they go. So the actual maximum speed is slowed by other factors.
 

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Where in mid flow now over here and due to a lack of drawn comb I've had to use foundation in some of my supers. A medium super with 8 frames is taking an average of 30 days to be drawn, filled and capped, the supers with drawn comb are averaging 17 days to be filled and capped. Just shows you the real value of drawn comb.
 

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I don't mean to question that Rob, as each area is different. I know here, in the main flow, I can put on a full drawn super, and they will fill it out within a week. Perhaps its the capping that I need to account for.
 

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As you say BjornBee every area is different and also every hive. I've got hive's that fill and cap a lot quicker than others but I've also got far too many hives that are quite simply "embarassing". Old queens and old frames in the brood box being the main problem, and those hives are what's pushing the average up (plus a bit of bad weather).

<Perhaps its the capping that I need to account for.>

Do you harvest frames before they're fully capped, there's a bloke in our association who sys he gives his frames a shake and if the honey dosen't spill then the humidity is low enough for the honey to be harvested.
Each to there own I guess.
 

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Rob, No. I just take note from week to week if I need to throw another super on. Whether its capped or not, I don't take note. Its whether I see the "white", and know to add another. I can add a super, and within a week they need another, although it may not be capped.
 

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Glad this came up. I'm reading the hive and the honey bee. It says:

"The first supers given above the food (sic) chambers in the start of the flow should be supers of drawn comb."

I assume they meant brood chambers.

Anyway, I'm just starting out and won't have any drawn comb. My supers are shallow and the brood deep, so I can't put the little frames in there to get drawn out, right?

It also says that if supers of drawn comb aren't around, put some drawn comb between foundation to get them started. Duh! If you don't have any put some in between. It says that this is called "baiting the super."

I plan on crush and strain, so never figued to have any drawn comb for the supers. Is this a problem?

The edition I'm reading is from 1975, so perhaps this advice has changed. Thanks.
 

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Tom,
Most of the books go on the "best" advice that the author knows. thats not to say that the second or third option is somehow wrong or not effective. Just may not be the best optimal choice. there are many who crush and strain. The bees will make the comb again next year. It may be a little less productive in honey terms, but you get nice wax every year.
 

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Thanks Bjorn,

When I first met the president of our local association, he said something like "Ask 3 beekeepers, get 5 answers." That seems to be proving out.
 
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