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Hi everyone,

I wonder if anyone else encounter the same problem...

My bees do not like to go to foundation in 3/4 supers. I have two hives , two different locations ,the same problem. Two full width brood boxes have brood and honey and supers have only few bees crawling around and not drawn foundations. 2 months ago I removed the excluder in one hive -no results. 3 weeks ago I put full width frame with brood and 2 full width honey frames to 3/4 super to encourage bees to go up . They built up the comb on the bottom of frames to close up the space below , but still did not even started on empty frames. They even had a go on plastic frame in the super....

I wonder if there has been a faulty foundation around ???that bees do not like it?:thumbdown:

Cheers

Maja

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Yes I've noticed that some hives are reluctant to work on new frames (plastic). My observation is that strong hives take to new frames more readily than weeker ones. I tend to treat my weeker hives to a few "wet" frames to encourge them.

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Thanks for replies.

Its wax foundation only, new frames. Both hives filled completely both bottom boxes to extend that I was worried that was no room for Q to lay eggs. Only foundation that has been touched was a plastic frame.

I wondered if at that stage of season I could smear some honey on the foundation to encourage bees to come to it???? I do not have any wet 3/4 frames...

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Maya is nothing wrong with you or the bees. It is true the honey flow is reduced but my bees still drawing the frames.

So, where can be the problem?

It is in your hands and I would like you to share it with us.

 

Who made and sold those wax foundation sheets to you?(I only want to know that to make sure I'll never buy my foundation sheets from him/her) Yes, that is the problem!!!!

 

Every commercial wax foundation sheet manufacturer is using machinery to make them. Using only bee wax it will not work. During the process the wax foundation sheet will brake and damage. The technology to prevent damages during the process was invented long time ago and is used all around the world.

So, every wax foundation sheet from a commercial manufacturer will contain PARAFFIN WAX. Oh, yes that harmful staff made from crude oil in Saudi Arabia or Irak or ...... ever.

The paraffin wax will give strength and elasticity to the wax foundation sheet and the machinery will work on a full speed without damages.

The more paraffin wax = lower cost in manufacturing = more money for the manufacturer.

It is nothing personal , just business.

I already gave you the answer. The more paraffin wax in your foundation sheets = the more chance as the bees will not like it.

 

So , what you should do? Go to your local liquor store and buy some distilled fruit spirit. The better quality = the best.

Now put it into a plastic spray bottle and spray over the wax foundation sheets and put them back in the hive. In most of the situations will help.

 

The plastic frames are usually coated (when coated by the supplier) with the lowest quality of bee wax(you can't see that because the frames are black) and paraffin wax is used in a lower percent(by my best knowledge). I can definitely say there is a big difference between the plastic frames coated by the supplier and those coated by me with my own bee wax.

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Maya is nothing wrong with you or the bees. It is true the honey flow is reduced but my bees still drawing the frames.

So, where can be the problem?

It is in your hands and I would like you to share it with us.

 

Who made and sold those wax foundation sheets to you?(I only want to know that to make sure I'll never buy my foundation sheets from him/her) Yes, that is the problem!!!!

 

Every commercial wax foundation sheet manufacturer is using machinery to make them. Using only bee wax it will not work. During the process the wax foundation sheet will brake and damage. The technology to prevent damages during the process was invented long time ago and is used all around the world.

So, every wax foundation sheet from a commercial manufacturer will contain PARAFFIN WAX. Oh, yes that harmful staff made from crude oil in Saudi Arabia or Irak or ...... ever.

The paraffin wax will give strength and elasticity to the wax foundation sheet and the machinery will work on a full speed without damages.

The more paraffin wax = lower cost in manufacturing = more money for the manufacturer.

It is nothing personal , just business.

I already gave you the answer. The more paraffin wax in your foundation sheets = the more chance as the bees will not like it.

 

So , what you should do? Go to your local liquor store and buy some distilled fruit spirit. The better quality = the best.

Now put it into a plastic spray bottle and spray over the wax foundation sheets and put them back in the hive. In most of the situations will help.

 

The plastic frames are usually coated (when coated by the supplier) with the lowest quality of bee wax(you can't see that because the frames are black) and paraffin wax is used in a lower percent(by my best knowledge). I can definitely say there is a big difference between the plastic frames coated by the supplier and those coated by me with my own bee wax.

 

WOW!!. That is unbelievable. I am not doubting you. It is just that I have had the same problem getting the girls to go to new foundation. This is no doubt the same problem. Thanks for the tip about distilled fruit spirit.

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Not sure if you have any, but putting a frame of drawn out and hopefully with some necter will make the bees move up.

 

Not sure what the honey flow is like in your area, but wouldn't be the time of the time to start reducing not adding new boxes?

 

I know our girls have slowed down in the last couple of weeks, we are in Auckland.

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Hi Kiwi Bee, I have never heard of parafin wax in comb foundation, so have checked with the people who make my foundation, NZ Beeswax, and they tell me there is no parafin wax in their foundation and in fact they were amazed anybody would think this.

 

Perhaps it happens in your country I don't know, but doesn't look like it happens in New Zealand.

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Every commercial wax foundation sheet manufacturer is using machinery to make them. Using only bee wax it will not work. During the process the wax foundation sheet will brake and damage. The technology to prevent damages during the process was invented long time ago and is used all around the world.

So, every wax foundation sheet from a commercial manufacturer will contain PARAFFIN WAX. Oh, yes that harmful staff made from crude oil in Saudi Arabia or Irak or ...... ever.

The paraffin wax will give strength and elasticity to the wax foundation sheet and the machinery will work on a full speed without damages.

The more paraffin wax = lower cost in manufacturing = more money for the manufacturer.

It is nothing personal , just business.

I already gave you the answer. The more paraffin wax in your foundation sheets = the more chance as the bees will not like it.

 

Hi Kiwi Bee, what's your source for the above info? I'm not saying it doesn't happen, I just don't know of it happening in NZ.

 

I was of the understanding that NZ foundation is made using the 'Weed Process'

A quick google shows up this page for SI made foundation - http://www.beeswax.co.nz/foundation.htm

 

In the book 'The Hive and the Honeybee' they talk about trials using a 3 ply layer with carnuba wax (a vegatable oil) but the bees would knaw away at the foundation to get rid of it.

In 1943 the Root company patented a system using 30-50% hydrogenated castor oil (also a vegetable oil).

 

From ABC & XYZ of Beekeeping (remembering this is a very old book).

"Combs made from foundation containing twenty-five to fifty percent of adulteration of paraffin or ceresin are very liable to melt down in the hive in hot weather. Paraffin is ductile enough to make beautiful foundation, but does not stand the heat of the hive. Ceresin, on the other hand, while more closely resembling genuine beeswax in point of specific gravity and fusibility, is too tough and brittle, under some conditions, for bees to work. Work it? Yes, they will, and construct combs; and in Germany considerable ceresin foundation has been and perhaps is being sold; but experience shows that it is poor economy, and that it will lead the beekeeper or the poor bees to grief sooner or later.

Some recent work seems to show that there are certain wax compounds, that can he used to strengthen ordinary beeswax from the hive. In 1922 there was introduced a three-ply comb foundation, the center ply of which is of a much harder wax. The tests of this foundation at this writing seem to show that it is much stronger and better than ordinary foundation for the brood-nest."

 

I managed to find some foundation for sale in China with 30% to 50% paraffin. http://www.alibaba.com/product-gs/483973941/bee_products_beeswax_sheet_with_30.html

 

Other than China however, nothing popped up on Google showing it for sale anywhere else - at least nobody admitting to it.

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Thanks for replies.

Its wax foundation only, new frames. Both hives filled completely both bottom boxes to extend that I was worried that was no room for Q to lay eggs. Only foundation that has been touched was a plastic frame.

I wondered if at that stage of season I could smear some honey on the foundation to encourage bees to come to it???? I do not have any wet 3/4 frames...

 

My experience as been that a strong hive on a good flow will draw out foundation fairly quickly. A weaker hive can struggle though, even on a good flow. Sometimes lifting a frame (as you've tried) will work, but not always.

 

It may simply be that they have noticed that it's starting to cool down (we've all had some cooler weather of late I think), and they are simply at the point where they are winding down for the year. The queen is laying less, and so they are storing honey in what was the outside of the brood nest instead of drawing more comb.

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Yes, as I said before, here in the south it's about time to feed if you need foundation drawn for winter stores. Last year for new hives I was feeding in February to make sure the comb was drawn and filled while there was still warm enough weather. Then after I'd bought all that sugar, the winter was so mild the beggars hardly used their stores anyway. But they were strong in the spring.

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Could it be the hives are honey bound? I have it on one of my hives, they filled the top half of the frames on the top FD box and never really wanted to go up to the next level. It was a fairly late swarm so they may have just decided it's too late to continue up.

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Guys, go to this website and scroll down till you find the wax foundations.Some manufacturers are not keeping this in secret:

http://www.alibaba.com/countrysearch/CN/paraffin-sheet-wax.html

 

If any of you want to buy paraffin wax in NZ go to Ceracell in AKL. They'll guaranty the melting point is 60-62 celsius degree , not below. Don't just use the google, use google translate to read websites in different language than english.

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Kiwi Bee, I didn't see a single New Zealand wax supplier in the alibaba listings - primarily companies were from China or India.

 

If you have an example of a New Zealand supplier selling parrafin/beeswax blends as foundation (especially if it is not clearly identified as such), please identify them.

 

If you have an example of a New Zealand supplier using beeswax imported from overseas, please identify them.

 

Otherwise, don't assume that what international suppliers do is relevant to what New Zealand suppliers do.

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This reminds me of a conversation I had with my dear old mum a while ago, just before I placed a ban on her listening to the wireless rather than sleeping at night. It went something along the lines of - She said did you know that bla bla bla and upon myself showing some surprise at the statement & wondering if she might have at long last lost the plot, asked her to quantify the statement and it origin the dear old thing said I heard it last night on the wireless from Jack B who rang in from timbucktoo or somewhere, and he heard it down at the RSA the other night or thinks it was the other night:)

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Hi ,

Very interested replies...

KiwiBee-"distilled fruit spirit" -I have some Cointreau, Blue Curacao , Galliano and Kahlua at home ...Any of them do you think bees would prefer????

Is the idea to make them drunk so they do not know what they doing?:D

Thanks

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Kiwi Bee, I didn't see a single New Zealand wax supplier in the alibaba listings - primarily companies were from China or India.

 

If you have an example of a New Zealand supplier selling parrafin/beeswax blends as foundation (especially if it is not clearly identified as such), please identify them.

 

If you have an example of a New Zealand supplier using beeswax imported from overseas, please identify them.

 

Otherwise, don't assume that what international suppliers do is relevant to what New Zealand suppliers do.

Illegal to import bees and bee products such a comb -- is this correct?

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Illegal to import bees and bee products such a comb -- is this correct?

 

yep, by and large. There might be some finished products that include a bee product ingredient, eg, beeswax in cosmetic products, but they are a long way removed from the raw product at that point.

 

product imports are covered by import health standards issued under the Biosecurity Act 1993 which specify what can come from where and under what conditions.

http://www.biosecurity.govt.nz/ihs/search

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Thanks for replies.

I wondered if at that stage of season I could smear some honey on the foundation to encourage bees to come to it???? I do not have any wet 3/4 frames...

 

You could try it, and it would draw them up into the box, but that doesn't mean they'll be willing or even able to draw the comb.

 

As Paul, John and others have noted, they're only physically capable of drawing comb at certain times of the year. I removed all undrawn foundation from my hives three weeks ago when the girls stopped drawing. They won't get any more foundation until they're expanding in spring and start a bit of whitewaxing.

 

As John noted, if it were left on the hive, they'd eventually start chewing it out and make a bit of a mess of it. Foundation sheets are only left on the hive from now on through winter where I'm out of comb and need them to maintain correct frame spacing - for that it's worth sacrificing a sheet.

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