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General Q&A, Bee chat and only Bee chat please
 #5917  by AdamD
 12 Mar 2020, 12:20
One of the plus points that BIBBA say about the bee they consider native, is that it flies in colder weather and it tends to have large pollen stores. So could well be better in poor or windy spring conditions.
I suspect Nigel, that you locals would not be considered by BIBBA as anything resembling their kind of bee! :lol:
 #5920  by Chrisbarlow
 12 Mar 2020, 14:02
Buying plywood for making transport boxes
 #5921  by NigelP
 12 Mar 2020, 17:58
AdamD wrote:
12 Mar 2020, 12:20
One of the plus points that BIBBA say about the bee they consider native, is that it flies in colder weather and it tends to have large pollen stores. So could well be better in poor or windy spring conditions.
I suspect Nigel, that you locals would not be considered by BIBBA as anything resembling their kind of bee! :lol:
Take anything they say with a very large pinch of salt. /wry grin/
When I ran locals and exotics side by side they all would fly or non.....many exoytics flying today despite it being about 8C and blowing a gale....again....
If you look at the literature Honey collection is inversely proportional to pollen collection. So basically if you have a bee strain that collects large pollen stores your honey yields are compromised.....something I noticed when I ran Amm's vs ANother. Despite colony sizes being about equal the "native" bees collected about 2/3 less honey. I'm not impressed with them...
But, even though I get prodigious amounts of honey from my preferred bees I still have to dispose of pollen clogged frames every year.....so god knows what they are doing.....
If there was a solution to pollen clogged frames I'd be delighted to hear it.
 #5922  by MickBBKA
 13 Mar 2020, 15:51
NigelP wrote:
12 Mar 2020, 17:58
If there was a solution to pollen clogged frames I'd be delighted to hear it.
I soak the combs in a water tub for 24 hours then use the spray on the garden hose gun to wash the pollen out, works a treat :D
 #5924  by AdamD
 14 Mar 2020, 09:48
I've never had what I would consider to be a problem with pollen clogged frames; occasionally frames seem to retain pollen but those are the really dark - almost black - ones with a fair amount of drone comb that I probably should have chucked out a couple of seasons before-hand.
My view is that, in most cases, bees will sort out the frames for themselves and arrange them how they wish.
 #5928  by NigelP
 14 Mar 2020, 13:49
Perhaps not in this case Adam....as the bees have no access to these excess pollen clogged frames. Currently 5 1/2 brood boxes worth. I was hoping by storing them in a warmer shed overwinter the pollen beetle /mites might do the job for me....alas it's not looking good.
Most likely cut out and throw aways.
 #5932  by MickBBKA
 14 Mar 2020, 23:12
NigelP wrote:
13 Mar 2020, 18:25
Before or after they have been stored and dried out/gone mouldy over winter?
Ha... Long before Winter. My bees suffer such a lack of pollen that once its calm enough to fly probably 70% of the bees come back loaded. I end up with supers half full of it and no room for nectar. getting the balance right is a real art, mainly because I don't know what I am doing and the rest of the time I am too busy working..LOL If I had space I would freeze pollen frames for early spring use when they can't fly like the last 6 weeks. Absolutely blowing a hoolie here for weeks now whatever the temp. Pollen filled frames would be great as all the early flowers are finished and they probably never had a single flying day.
 #5935  by Patrick
 15 Mar 2020, 09:22
A few years ago I had similar with all my first supers on single brood with an arch of pollen in them. Knowing at extraction if I left the supers with all that pollen until spring they would be hard pellets and need to be scraped out, I just scraped back the affected areas to the foundation midrib after extraction. The bees cleaned up the residual mess and drew out the comb next year (mainly as drone comb, which was an issue as they seemed reluctant to fill those areas with honey - maybe I should have kept back those frames until later in the season which would have made them less likely to draw out as drone).

I mixed the pollen and wax slurry with honey and fed it back to the bees in spring and they loved it.

Not had the issue since in sufficient quantity to repeat the experiment or refine the methodology. As Nigel doesn’t seem short of pollen anytime maybe not for him.

My overwintered bred in brood combs (of which I try not to have many) where they have fresh pollen stored is mainly turned to dust by pollen mites by spring. They are in a shed same as Nigel, so not sure why the mites are maybe less active. Random thought - could oxalic vaporising affect pollen mites as well? Don’t know enough about them tbh. Braula flies have sometimes alledged to have been largely eradicated in hives by varroa treatments.
 #5940  by NigelP
 15 Mar 2020, 18:45
Interesting thoughts guys...Patrick...it's just much colder up here in the Yorkshire Tundra.
Mick I have man y pollen clogged frames available....you can collect whenever...
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