drone base or worker base for your supers?

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New Bee
Aug 21, 2009
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Does anyone use Drone base foundation for their supers?. My old beekeeping friend prefers drone base for supers- he reckons that the bigger cups make honey extraction easier, and you should get more out of the comb- which does make sense. I have heard of other beeks doing this.

Others use worker foundation because if you want to run on brood and a half or the queen gets up in to the supers, you'll have loads of drones. I myself don't really mind, and the foundation on offer in the sale at the major beekeeping supplier is worker, so thats what i've bought.

Any thoughts?
I've used Drone base, but it has caused me problems when I've put a super under the brood box this winter. I have had to use a queen excluder between so it's a case of fingers crossed that I haven't lost the queen.
fingers crossed

Probably not. It has quite likely been brooding until recently, so bees will stay with that. Also, early in the winter, so a strong cluster from a brood would unlikely fill itself completely into a shallow box. Brood nests and clusters like to be spherical to minimise heat loss and heat rises.

Somewhat different the other way round, later in the winter, tight cluster, fewer bees, warmest at the top and feeding at the top. Much greater risk.

I wouldn't like to quote the odds but better than 50% and, I would hope' well beyond that.

I do wonder why all new beeks don't just keep it simple for a couple of seasons before they do things out of the 'norm'.

I have some drone super frames. Always carefull that queen is well excluded. Will prefer to place on top super of two. Yes, I like them. Yes, I have ordered more this year. Yes, less (fewer) cappings to deal with. Yes, slightly more honey per super.

But with one colony, stick with the the 'norm'. This is for the new readers to think about when they read these threads. Goes for all the other 'out of the norm' things that we do, too.KISS principle should apply, as there are enough pitfalls out there without adding some more potentials.

Regards, RAB
is it true that the bee's are less inclined to store pollen in drone cells?
Extraction aside and that is debatable as being better.

I see the main concern being what if the Q gets up there like they do on occasion.

Would you prefer to have loads of extra drones or more workers?

I raed that as the brood nest expands and the 'crown of honey' is moved up bees have been known to tear down drone cells and replace them with worker cell, so it may be worth having a super of worker frames and frames with drone cells on top of those.

Next year I have to increase my number of supers considerably as I have 4 more colonies than before, so I am workin out how to spread my existing drawn frames between the new supers, as I'd rather not put on whole supers of undrawn frames, and I think the bees can use a lot of energy drawing them out. I am hoping to get some honey to extract as well.

As you get the frames drawn put one foundation between two drawn if you can.