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Long Cells Sometimes Turned Upward


When storing honey in boxes, cells of this size are usually much
longer, in which case they are crooked, the ends turning upward,
sometimes half an inch or more; this, of course, will prevent the honey
from running, but if the box is taken off and turned over before such
cells are sealed, they are very sure to spill most of their contents.
The cells in the breeding apartment, of ordinary length, will hold the
honey well enough as long as horizontal; but turn the hive on its side,
and bring the open end downward, in hot weather, or break out a piece
and hold it in that position, the air will not sustain it in them, but
will, in the size suitable for workers.

When the hive is fully supplied with bees and honey, (unless destitute
of a queen,) I never examined one, winter or summer, but it had a
number of unsealed cells containing honey, as well as pollen; it is so
when they have stored fifty pounds in boxes, even when so crowded for
room as to store honey outside or under the bottom-board; ever having
some cells open for a ready supply.

Young swarms seem unwilling to construct combs faster than needed for
use; it would appear, at first thought, to be a lack of economy. When
no honey is to be obtained and nothing to do, then it would seem to be
a fine chance for getting ready for a yield; but this is not _their_
way of doing business; whether they cannot spare the honey already
collected to elaborate the wax, or whether they find it more difficult
to keep the worms from a large quantity of comb, I shall not decide. Of
this I am satisfied, that it is better arranged by their instincts,
than we could do it. Large swarms, when first located, if honey is
abundant, will extend their combs from top to bottom in a little more
than two weeks; but such hive is not yet full; some sheets of comb may
contain honey throughout their whole length, and not a cell be sealed
over; but, however, they generally find time to finish up within a few
inches of the lower end as they proceed. Whenever unfinished cells
contain honey, it will generally be removed soon after the flowers
fail, and used before that which is sealed; and the cells will remain
empty till another year.

Next: Is A Dry Or Wet Season Best For Honey?

Previous: Philosophy In Filling A Cell With Honey

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