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Comb straightener

Post new topic   Reply to topic    beekeeping forum -> Horizontal top bar hives
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New Bee

Joined: 08 Nov 2013
Posts: 8
Location: Australia, Melbourne

PostPosted: Wed Dec 17, 2014 4:48 am    Post subject: Comb straightener Reply with quote

Hi All,
We are well into the new season here and I have 2 new hives (from caught swarms) going fantastically. The problem is that I don't have the time to check their progress as I would like and consequentially they have started to cross comb fairly badly.
Last season I was following an interesting thread about an idea for comb straighteners. Now I can not find the thread.
I wanted to give the "comb straightener" idea a try to see if it might help. As I recall it was a piece of material the shape of a follower board but with a bee space all around and a big hole cut in the middle.
If someone can give me some more information about these straighteners and their construction and use, it would be very much appreciated.
Thanks, Gary.
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Golden Bee

Joined: 04 Apr 2009
Posts: 1681
Location: Canada, BC, Delta

PostPosted: Mon Jan 12, 2015 7:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Your two best options are to use wax foundation strips that extend the full length of the bar with a bee space left on each end from the wall. It should also extend to an exposed depth of a minimum of 1". A short follower board attached to a normal width bar that is as thick as a normal worker comb will minimize curving of the comb ends. This should extend down 1 1/2" to 2" and have the bee space at the ends to the side walls. They will build comb extended from the bottom of the board which is what you want at the same time gives a barrier above to stop the curving of combs built next to it.

I've had very good results using the 1" foundation strips with many hives that I don't have time to regularly check. Some as long as one month between visits.
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Quality Top Bar Hives by Andrew Vidler

Conserving wild bees

Research suggests that bumble bee boxes have a very low success rate in actually attracting bees into them. We find that if you create an environment where first of all you can attract mice inside, such as a pile of stones, a drystone wall, paving slabs with intentionally made cavities underneath, this will increase the success rate.

Most bumble bee species need a dry space about the size a football, with a narrow entrance tunnel approximately 2cm in diameter and 20 cm long. Most species nest underground along the base of a linear feature such as a hedge or wall. Sites need to be sheltered and out of direct sunlight.

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Information about the Tree Bumblebee (Bombus hypnorum)

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