• Post Reply
  • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

Starting with bees and TBH

 
Isabelle Gendron
Posts: 173
Location: Montmagny, Québec, Canada (zone 4b)
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
well, this is it. I bought Christy's TBH plan and hubby is working on it. SOOOOOO excited

But a friend of mine that has beehives for a longtime now, is very interested in TBH but was having a concern about the production of wax. Since it seems to asked a lot of worked and nectar from the bees to produce it, is concern was about always taking off the comb compare to the one with foundation that you can reuse. What do you think about this?

Isabelle
 
Isabelle Gendron
Posts: 173
Location: Montmagny, Québec, Canada (zone 4b)
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
And to keep you on appetite, I put you this amazing video of a hive full of honey

 
David Livingston
steward
Pie
Posts: 2581
Location: Anjou ,France
100
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
There are lots of opinions on this find two beekeepers and you always get three opinions .
Firstly there is some debate about weather having wax of any size cell is a good idea . Conventional Beeks either keep bees on standard size cell or small sized celld and they argue over the respective merits of either size . Me I think the bees know best as to how big the cell size should be . They have been bees longer than I have. Naturally they make cells of a range of different sizes dependant on conditions .
Secondly some argue that if the bees dont have to make wax then they can make more honey for me or for themselves . Although I accept this is true up to a point, is beekeeping only about getting honey? . I just want to provide a home for bees , the honey is a bonus.
I trust the bees to do what they think best Would you like a stranger to choose your furniture ?.

David
 
Isabelle Gendron
Posts: 173
Location: Montmagny, Québec, Canada (zone 4b)
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
David, you just confirm what I was thinking. For me honey is a good thing but since I am working in herboristery, wax will have a special place and a royal one. I think that bees will be very happy here with 5 hecates of wild flowers, and 30 hectars of forest. We decided to live our field that way and to work with nature insetad of trying to fight it. Our ground is more acid so perfect for wild flowers. Also perfect for an herborist. What can I ask more? I will have my little food forest, my Garden with Hazelip technique...hopefully Landrace seeds and now...bees....life's good :p

isabelle
 
Angelika Maier
Posts: 690
Location: cool climate, Blue Mountains, Australia
2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
What is a herborist? I know what a herbalist is but a herborist?? (Sorry for the thread drift)
 
Rob Browne
Posts: 65
Location: Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I don't run top bar hives but do run Langs with only starter strips. We crush and strain to harvest the honey so our bees always build new comb, good for cycling the old brood comb out. If the size of the honey harvest is the gauge of success then building new comb does not worry the bees at all. When there is a good flow on they build comb at an astonishing rate. We have kept ourselves and friends in honey for years now but I think it's the flow more than the new comb that defines the harvest.
 
Isabelle Gendron
Posts: 173
Location: Montmagny, Québec, Canada (zone 4b)
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Angelica....herbalist, sorry....

Rob, thank you for the info. I trust the girls, and I guess that if one year they need narrower comb or larger comb they can adjust.

Isabelle
 
Angelika Maier
Posts: 690
Location: cool climate, Blue Mountains, Australia
2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I am disappointed I thought it was something new!
 
Rob Browne
Posts: 65
Location: Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Isabelle Gendron wrote:Rob, thank you for the info. I trust the girls, and I guess that if one year they need narrower comb or larger comb they can adjust.


That is one of the really good things about crush and strain. Sometimes they just need to build drone comb then, when the drones emerge they usually backfill with honey. But later that may be empty and they need workers but the comb is not right. If the comb is cut out they just build what they need at the time.
 
Isabelle Gendron
Posts: 173
Location: Montmagny, Québec, Canada (zone 4b)
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
@ Angelica: Sorry to disapointe you

@ Rob: So it is a good thing then?

isabelle
 
Tim Eastham
Posts: 52
Location: USDA Climate Zone 9, Central Florida
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
It is over a year later, but I will chime in on this thread. I chose TBH because I wanted the bees to have the experience that I consider most bee like. When it comes to TBH, you will be removing a lot more wax than a conventional hive. Here are the reasons why I think this is not only OK but beneficial:

1. Bees step all over the comb. Each comb probably receives hundreds of thousands of tiny bee footsteps on it each day. Some of those bees just returned from foraging for water, pollen, or nectar. This will cause a buildup of whatever the bees encounter in the wild. In an ideal permaculture world, this would be fine. But in our world of chemicals, they will be accumulating chemicals on the comb. Slicing off the comb and making them rebuild it reboots this. Every other part of the hive is non-continual. Queens, workers, and drones die and are replaced. Honey is consumed. The only chemical weak link in my opinion is the wax.

2. In nature, when the hive is attacked by a mammal, they will take the comb. So, if I want the honey, I believe I should take the comb too.

3. I think the cost to the hive is negligible, especially compared to a modernly managed conventional hive. The only reason why they reuse the comb is to shorten the cycle to fill them back up with honey. The only reason why they want that situation is so they will be able to harvest more honey. When you take into account all the honey that will be taken under this technique, I would be hard pressed to think that the economics of the hive are any different than taking the comb.

4. Causing them to rebuild comb gives them the opportunity to change the comb size to fit any changes in the hive. Whether it be genetic changes caused by a queen change or environmental response, allowing them to rebuild the comb makes sure the hive is designed in the best way for their current surrounding, genetics, and environment.

Tim
Mountain Tranquility Farm
Clermont, FL
 
Isabelle Gendron
Posts: 173
Location: Montmagny, Québec, Canada (zone 4b)
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
@ Tim,
About the wax. Christy did some test on beewax on a goldstar hive. You can see the result here. Very interesting.

http://www.goldstarhoneybees.com/shopcontent.asp?type=wax

Isabelle
 
I agree. Here's the link: https://richsoil.com/wood-heat.jsp
  • Post Reply
  • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic