Bees Refuse to Draw Foundation

Discussion in 'Beekeeping 101' started by Rick54, Jun 19, 2019.

  1. Rick54

    Rick54 Member

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    I believe the nectar flow is in full swing now in my area of Michigan as we just finished the Black Locust and I see the Dutch Clover and Yellow Sweet Clover are in bloom as well as many other roadside flowers I'm not familiar with. So you'd think the honey supers would be filling right up! Unfortunately my medium supers of Acorn plastic foundation are going untouched. I even put a fresh coat of melted bees wax on them and still the bees show no interest in drawing them out. There are also no excluders to restrict their upward movement either. Any suggestions as to why my bees have lost interest? So far we have had a bad spring. It seems we get sunshine one day and rain the next 3.
     
  2. Gypsi

    Gypsi Super Moderator Staff Member

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    feed sugar syrup, it takes a LOT of sugar to draw wax. This is why I had a freezer full of comb all winter, so I could give the comb to my bees when the flow started. Greatly assists. As far as the plastic versus natural battle, mine have been drawing out plastic foundation from the beginning in 2011. Without a phenomenal flow and/or sugar syrup AND the correct age of bees, no comb gets drawn.

    and my wood frames only get a few strands of 20 lb test fishing line run across and the wedge dropped at the top and wax painted on it. Foundationless all the way

    As the age of bees, I think days 8 thru 12 are wax workers? I could be wrong, please check a sticky note on bee life cycle.
     

  3. srvfantexasflood

    srvfantexasflood Member

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    I agree with Gypsi regarding the need for plenty of food. Also, the first 5-6 days of life bees need plenty of pollen for protein. The protein is needed to produce fat glands which will aid in wax production later on. Randy Oliver often talks about "fat bees". The weather plays a role in wax production too. Honey bees will produce wax during warm weather when there is plenty of foraging taking place.
    The build up of the colony could be another factor. Beekeepers need the colony to be at it's population peak when the main nectar flow begins.
    Rick54, I think your weather conditions are part of your problem. If you had a week of good old sunshine and a nectar flow, I think you would have drawn wax.
     
  4. Gypsi

    Gypsi Super Moderator Staff Member

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    well it seems to me that this dead thread popped up because someone posted something not nice?

    According to my email, this was 100TD's post. i don't see a problem, bees need fed, they build comb on pretty much anything including plastic foundation.

    "Why force your bees to build, they know when and how to already. They draw and fill plastic just the same as foundationless or foundation. So if the conditions are RIGHT in their colony, AND the resources are available, they will build, then store excess nectar. If they are concentrating on brood rearing or other jobs, they obviously need to be."
     
  5. 100 TD

    100 TD Member

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    I can't see anything "not nice" about what I said, what I said is factual and a response to the original question. If you aren't going to like the answer, don't ask the question. A question came through to my email so I looked at it, then answered this one, then I saw that it was from a post a long time ago so I deleted it as it wasn't worthy continuing an old thread.
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2020
  6. 100 TD

    100 TD Member

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    And you say this in another thread and then say my post is not nice, I'd say there must be some bias somewhere, as well as quoting my deleted text! Surely you must be joking!
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2020
  7. Gypsi

    Gypsi Super Moderator Staff Member

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    100 TD - I didn't know you had deleted it. I'm an admin, nothing fancy, don't own the site and I didn't know why it disappeared, typically spam gets deleted. I apologize if I hurt your feelings, I couldn't find anything wrong with your post. I think the site may be haunted.