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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What do I do if I need at some point split my colony and I only have room in my yard for 2 hives?
 

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Contact botanical gardens, gardening clubs, colleges, universities and everyone else with outdoor living. Sell them on putting your hive in their space for pollination and education.
 

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crazy8days said:
What do I do if I need at some point split my colony and I only have room in my yard for 2 hives?
If you want to split your one colony, you can do so right where the hive is. Make your split however you plan to and move the queenright part to the place in your yard where you want the second hive, leaving the split on the original site. I know plenty of guys who split hives and move the queenright half to a position behind the original spot. Field bees will return to the original site, boosting the split's population and stimulating the hive w/ pollen and nectar coming in.

Other methods work well too. But, unless you have means to move to another yard, and you have another yard, the above works okay.
 

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Not sure if I grasped your problem properly.

You can take frames with Q cells and put them in a brood box. This box can then go on a special board which replaces the inner cover. The special board has its own entrance(s). Almost like two hives on one stand. Not without its problems. This is the simplified version.

Hope it helps. May be rubbish.
 

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Mark's right- I made several splits last year right next to each other. Move the queen with the new split- she'll replace the field bees that return to the old spot. You don't have to put the split miles away.
I made two nucs in the summer that I kept small and am overwintering now.
Or you can make your Spring split, then recombine the two hives back into one strong one in the Fall, eliminating the older or poorer queen.
Or you can sell frames or nucs you take off your strong hive- it's like a split.
I strongly suggest you at least get yourself a couple of nuc boxes- you can do all kinds of stuff with them and manage your two hives. Nucs take up very little space.

Keep in mind that splits, nucs, and hives can all be created and then recombined or 'uncreated' as you wish- according to your fancy. Nothing needs to be permanent. Pull some brood frames and a queen off a strong hive to keep it from swarming in the Spring- make a nuc with those frames, let the nuc grow and the old hive make honey and a new queen... recombine everyone in the fall for a big strong hive going into winter if you like.
All kinds of cool things you can try out!
 

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If you don't have space for more then 2 hives, and you see swarm cells in your hive,you may do following:
Chances are the queen cells are at the bottom of the second story of your colony. Make sure the queen is not in that box. Remove the box, and in it's place put empty box with drawn comb if you have, if not foundation will do the job. On the top of the new box place a double screen board, and on top of it box with queen cells, brood and nurse bees. All foragers will return to the original colony, where the queen is, and the colony will not swarm because they are almost broodles, second story is empty.
So swarming is prevented and you got new colony. After 3 weeks or more new queen will hatch and mate.
By the time a new queen is operational (laying eggs) you found a new location for your hive, move it there, top it with another hive box and good luck.
This split is possible when you have a good nectar flow, up here it's after May 10th , right on swarming calendar. Good flow diminishes chances of the new colony being robed.
Double screen prevents one queen from killing another, and provides warmth for a new colony.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Marbees said:
If you don't have space for more then 2 hives, and you see swarm cells in your hive,you may do following:
Chances are the queen cells are at the bottom of the second story of your colony. Make sure the queen is not in that box. Remove the box, and in it's place put empty box with drawn comb if you have, if not foundation will do the job. On the top of the new box place a double screen board, and on top of it box with queen cells, brood and nurse bees. All foragers will return to the original colony, where the queen is, and the colony will not swarm because they are almost broodles, second story is empty.
So swarming is prevented and you got new colony. After 3 weeks or more new queen will hatch and mate.
By the time a new queen is operational (laying eggs) you found a new location for your hive, move it there, top it with another hive box and good luck.
This split is possible when you have a good nectar flow, up here it's after May 10th , right on swarming calendar. Good flow diminishes chances of the new colony being robed.
Double screen prevents one queen from killing another, and provides warmth for a new colony.
That is what I wanted to know. Never thought about placing another hive on top of another. Like a double decker! Will be looking this year for other places this year. Thanks everyone!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
PerryBee said:
I think Marbees is referring to one of these.



Double screened with a 3/8" gap between and an entrance for the top box.

I'm assuming that is used as a bottom board, correct?
 

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nope between two active hives in the same stack. this 'double screen' is equipped with a trigger entrance (some double screens have two trigger entrances on opposite side and on opposite ends). this allows you to flip the screen and there by alter the entrance and direct more or less bees into which ever half you wish.

you could of course use the above double screen for a screen bottom board if you wished.

a double screen has a number of other uses.
 

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crazy8days said:
PerryBee said:
I think Marbees is referring to one of these.



Double screened with a 3/8" gap between and an entrance for the top box.

I'm assuming that is used as a bottom board, correct?
Yes, you can call it a temporary bottom board for the new colony :)
If short on equpment you may use a regular inner cover providing that the hole in the center is double screened. And don't forget entrances for both colonies :) Better if not on the same side.
Mine are the same as Perry's. Plan to build a few of them "Robo style"
http://www.bushkillfarms.com/gallery2/d ... intro1.jpg
 

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In for my two pennyworth.

Possible drawbacks to the double screen two box method are : - If the top box is very strong you could get casts each time a virgin emerges, a rule of thumb is that 'the bigger the colony is the slower will be the new Q starting to lay'. If Perry has a pic of a Snelgrove board, this has 8 entrances (to reduce the strength of the top box). Another drawback is that you have to lift off the top box and board should you wish to add a super to the bottom box or check that the bottom box has not raised another crop of Q cells.

If you have space on either side of your colony then a Pagden method of swarm control may be suitable.
 

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Now here I go, proving you are never too old to learn something!
I probably should know the answer to this and I have read this elsewhere before in situations like this, but why would you destroy any capped queens cells? I have also read about doing splits (or some similar scenario) and such and going in on day 4 and getting rid of started queen cells. I have never been able to figure out why? I suppose it must have something to do with the quality of diet fed to the developing larvae?
Geezer seeking enlightenment! :oops:
 

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I think the Brighton beek is rather "over-egging" the system. Pagden can be a lot simpler. I suspect he is destroying capped Q cells to avoid a Q emerging/leaving before his day 6 step. I always thought that if you've got sealed Q cells the swarm will be ready to go.

These South coast beeks can be a law unto themselves ---- as can us Northerners. :roll:
 

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Barbarian said:
I think the Brighton beek is rather "over-egging" the system. Pagden can be a lot simpler. I suspect he is destroying capped Q cells to avoid a Q emerging/leaving before his day 6 step. I always thought that if you've got sealed Q cells the swarm will be ready to go.

These South coast beeks can be a law unto themselves ---- as can us Northerners. :roll:
:lol: Yup, how many times you read or heard, the way I do that is actually variation of Demaree/Taylor/Pagden...
Those beeks :roll: :roll:
 

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kebee writes:
Ok here i am again, what is a Pagden method

tecumseh:
I am glad someone mentioned demaree so I 'kind of' have an idea of what them 'loyal subject of the queen' are talking about.

for a lot of southern and mid states (US) bee keepers the demaree system is really a large waste of energy and time. imho we do not have the kind of nectar flow required to take advantage of this kind of manipulation. even reading about this method in my very old abc/xyz makes me dizzy.

however... you 'could' use a variation of the demaree system (shrunk quite a bit) to produce a young vigorous replacement queen at the same time the old queen is still laying.

other uses of double screens (just off the cuff)
1) great for covering stacks of honey as you haul them back to the honey house.
2) provides a means to stack a weak hive on top of a strong hive and thereby supply some heat for the weak unit in the colder months.
3) can be used (often is in a commercial setting) for rearing queen cells in a queen right hive (a triggered double screen is almost essential here.
4) a good way to combine hives since the two parts will fairly quickly obtain the same smell (not as fast as a paper combine but still works just fine).

I myself am of the opinion that destroying queen cells is a large waste of time. I still do it from time to time, but still know that while I am doing so that it still is largely a waste of my efforts.
 
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