capped drone cells in honey super...

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by Joe_P, Sep 9, 2017.

  1. Joe_P

    Joe_P New Member

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    I left a medium honey super on one of my hives with no queen excluder as well....
    I just checked out the super and it is literally full of capped drone cells on every frame.
    No honey at all.
    Since this is September 9th in eastern penna. ---
    Do i let them emerge, for the colony to throw them out in a month anyway ?
    None of my other hives did this so it has me confused on how to proceed.
    *As a note the bottom 2 deep brood boxes are packed with eggs, capped brood and food stores - They look GREAT !
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2017
  2. ccjersey

    ccjersey Member

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    You could speed up the process by raking them open or freezing them and then raking them open for the bees to clean. A benefit would be destroying a significant amount of varroa. What are your mite numbers running?
     

  3. Joe_P

    Joe_P New Member

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    less than a month ago I did a sugar shake and had 3 mites appear on the plate ...

    I did an oxalic acid vapor treatment the following day on all my hives as well.
    (I know it doesn't get to the mites inside the capped brood but I am going to hit them once more before the winter cold sets in )
    I do think I will rake a few spots throughout that box and check for mites on the larvae.
    If present then I think I will freeze them .

    decisions , decisions

    I always have a two way street in my thinking....
    <--- one way to make my best guesses and try to be proactive
    ---> other way is the bees must have done this for a reason and let them carry out their plans

    decisions , decisions .....

    thanks for your input !
     
  4. Gypsi

    Gypsi Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I have chickens. they LOVE drone brood. opening it will give you a very solid assessment on mites as well. I would not let the drones emerge, I'd open them up, shake them out for chickens or other wildlife, freeze frames for 2 days and return them to bees after warmed up
     
  5. eltalia

    eltalia New Member

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    Assuming there does exist the usual drone population in the broodchamber
    I would go one step further and cut the combs out, letting the chickens do the cleaning.
    Drone comb saturating a frame is not good practice as frame managment
    unless it is a single frame in a broodchamber. So when running foundationless this is a task one should pay attention to when comb is being drawn.

    Bill
     
  6. Joe_P

    Joe_P New Member

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    this drone brood was all in a honey super that was left on the hive , technically making it part of the brood chamber since there was no queen excluder in use... 2 deeps and this medium ...
    I did check some of the drone brood and no mites were present ... the rest of the drone brood was left to do its thing since it is part of the chamber...
    Since my original post the drones have emerged or are emerging and the workers are backfilling with nectar . My shot at letting them make the decision seems to be good so far .
    Thanks for the replies . once they cluster in the cold that medium will most likely then come off .
     
  7. eltalia

    eltalia New Member

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    " technically making it part of the brood chamber since there was no queen excluder in use.."

    Yes, this is a known classic for that config - not at all technicaly correct but a fault in management. However the use of excluders is an art in itself, and not at all understood - nor entertained - by many a BK.
    Why that is and the problem of drone comb in honey supers I leave to others best versed in local dialect.

    Bill
     
  8. Joe_P

    Joe_P New Member

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