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Cell Spacings On Cell Bar


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I removed my queen cells today and put them into my mating nucs - things went great with the Cloake Board - I ended up with 6 capped cells out of ten - not too terrible for my first time! 

 

One thing I did notice was that in one place the bees had built brace comb between two of the cells. It took me a bit by surprise because I've been looking at lots of pictures of perfect model queen cells (probably photoshopped - :) ) that looked nothing like these chubby things. Only two of the cells would fit into the Nicot cell protectors - the rest had too much comb being built around them. I got around the protector problem by using tin foil wrapped around the larger cells, leaving the bottom open for the queen to emerge. I'm not sure I even needed cell protectors - my mating nuc has been queenless for about a week, and I've been through and got rid of all the cells they made (I read later somewhere that cell protectors aren't really needed if the hive/nuc/mating nuc has been queenless for more than 24-48 hours).

 

Anyway - I got wondering about why they might have made so much brace comb on the cells and read a couple of comments on another forum about how the spacing of the cells on the bar could be a contributing factor. I have 10 cells - Nicot style - spread evenly across the top bar. Should I be reconfiguring this and putting 15 or so across there? I've since made another cell bar with the cells closer together but in groups of 2 or 3 - still only ten per bar though. Am I doing it right or should I, as I mentioned above, be putting more cells on the bar?

 

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If there is a honey flow on I like to have a frame of foundation in the hive so the bees can do something with the wax making urge other than put wax all over my cells.

I don't think you're doing anything wrong - with a flow on, the bees will just make comb - it's what they do. It can usually be removed with care so the queecells can be put into other colonies.

Regarding preventing construction of brace comb over the cells, as mentioned above - having two foundations per batch of grafts in a finisher helps . Empty foundationless frame, even better, but still

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I don't think you're doing anything wrong - with a flow on, the bees will just make comb - it's what they do. It can usually be removed with care so the queecells can be put into other colonies.

6 out of 10 is not bad. One of the joys of beekeeping is getting the bees to raise queens rather than buy them in. :)

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On 13.12.2017 г. at 9:01 AM, EasyBee said:

...

 Am I doing it right or should I, as I mentioned above, be putting more cells on the bar?


 

Regarding preventing construction of brace comb over the cells, as mentioned above - having two foundations per batch of grafts in a finisher helps . Empty foundationless frame, even better, but still doesn't solve the problem completely.

 

Things that work best are:

Queenless finisher

Putting the cell bars into a insulator frame (queen excluders)

Hair roller cages over the capped cells (left open). Good for small scale queen rearing. Cells get ugly, but unaffected otherwise.

 

About the spacing, believe this is the right one:IMG_20180114_141407_581.thumb.jpg.b4df4cab10a109c2561e2d8ef921a978.jpg

 

Less space between cells does make them smaller, but more than this doesn't seem to make them any bigger.

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