Combine question

Discussion in 'Beekeeping 101' started by Eddy Honey, Sep 16, 2011.

  1. Eddy Honey

    Eddy Honey New Member

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    I think I'm going to need to combine 2 of my hives for winter.
    My question is about the order of boxes.
    Does it matter if the strong hive goes on top or bottom?
    Do I put the second hive directly on the 1st hives brood chamber or go ahead and put on top of their 3rd box? One queen is a laying machine using 1 eight frame deep, an eight frame medium, and part of another medium to lay brood while the other queen is happy with 1 deep for brood and 2 mediums above for stores. I'd like to keep the friendly laying machine but I can't find her.
    Will the bees know which one to "off" or will the queens meet and duke it out?
    The slower queen was raised this year by my nuc while the productive queen was received with the another nuc, then they swarmed, and I captured them.

    I'm just not seeing the stores I thought I should with all this goldenrod blooming. All the hives wreak of the stuff but I was hoping they'd put more of it away. There is still a month to go of goldenrod here in S.Jersey, All frames are drawn out so all they have to do is get busy!
     
  2. Mama Beek

    Mama Beek New Member

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    Just my personal opinion here....which is not really worth too much. I would do whatever it takes to find and keep only 1 queen. If you allow them to "duke it out" you risk losing both and this is not the time of year that I would want to try to rear a new one.

    Of course you do also have the option of keeping both hives as is and feeding heavily so that they can build up their stores that way. As long as both hives are healthy and have strong populations that is.
     

  3. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    Don't worry about finding the good queen. Its the one you want to get rid of you need to find. As mama said if you let them sort it out you may not get the answer you was looking for. I always put the week hive on top of the strong hive.
     
  4. Americasbeekeeper

    Americasbeekeeper New Member

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    Another option is to put an excluder between the two hives and let them share heat and resources for the Winter. You actually have two decent hives if they can make it through the Winter. You can requeen in the Spring if you are still not happy. I would put the honey supers closest to the excluder, but the bees will move it around like they want anyway.
     
  5. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    an Americansbeekeeper snip:
    Another option is to put an excluder between the two hives and let them share heat and resources for the Winter.

    tecumseh:
    might work in Florida but is a description for disaster here and I would definitely expect for New Jersey also. a question?? when the cluster moves above or below the queen excluder this winter to find provision what happens to the queen left above or below the queen excluder?

    on most occasion a weak hive will get no stronger during the late fall or winter. the 'old school' advice would be to take you loss in the fall and not in the spring time. if you think the hive is weak then re queen or combine.
     
  6. brooksbeefarm

    brooksbeefarm New Member

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    Sounds like the laying fool may be the Italian breed (they don't know when to quit laying for winter) and the other may be the Carniolan breed (they go through winter with less stores and smaller clusters). It seems to me they are both doing good, and with a month left they can put away alot of stores. If i was going to put one hive on top of the other for heat i would use the double screen method. I don't like killing a good queen if she's trying. You didn't say how much stores each hive had?With a month left you could also take brood from the the strong hive and build the weak one up. I'm now going to go to the back of the buss with Murrell, i might have sterted a breed of bee war. :lol: Jack
     
  7. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    We need something exciting to get started here. Maybe it'll pick up the post count.

    A double screen works best for trying to save both colonies.

    When combining, I like to remove one queen, then shake out the bees in front of the queenrite hive and let them walk in, like I do with a laying worker hive. I've found it works quickly, with little or no fighting.
     
  8. Eddy Honey

    Eddy Honey New Member

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    I attended my first chapter bee meeting today. We went through the hosts hives and they were similar to mine. She had 1 hive packed full of bees, brood, and eggs and a couple of hives that had started shrinking the brood nest and backfilling with honey. What I learned is that I just need to start feeding right now. Turns out my hives are fine. I learned that my one slow hive is actually shrinking down the brood nest to make room for stores.

    I was amazed at how many hive beetles that were in those hives. Glad I have traps top and bottom. I also learned about 2 types of nosema now I gotta look it up because I forgot what they were called lol.
     
  9. Omie

    Omie New Member

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    That's nothin', don't feel bad....one of the wise old experienced beekeepers in my area seriously tells people to treat their bees for "no-see-ums" twice a year. It's sometimes hard for me to not chuckle when he does this.
     
  10. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Nosema Apis

    Nosema Cerannae
     
  11. Eddy Honey

    Eddy Honey New Member

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    ^^^That's it! and I treat with "fumigat'em B! lol (Fumicilin-B) (sp)
     
  12. Eddy Honey

    Eddy Honey New Member

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    This may be true...the "laying fool is the original queen that came with the nuc (Italians) whilst the other one raised their own queen and could have been bred by who knows what!?
     
  13. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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  14. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    glad you found a bee club. it is good to not only find local information but also to know what bee resources are just down the block.

    current data suggest that nosema apis is not so prevalent but can be quite lethal at northern locations. treatment before the fact as a preventative may be the reasonable choice for northern bee keeper for nosema apis. nosema cerenna is much more abundant but is adversely affect by cold temperatures. so the cerenna form is much more likely to show itself (unlike it's twin apis the clues are very subtle) in the spring and summer months.

    there is an excellent article in this month ABJ in regards to comparing the two types of nosema.