Question about Combining

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by kemptville, Aug 1, 2013.

  1. kemptville

    kemptville New Member

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    Hello All!

    I have a queenless and a queenright hive and I want to combine the two using the newspaper method. How should I proceed with combining the two? Queenright on top of queenless or queenless on top of queenright? Does it matter?

    Cheers
     
  2. DonMcJr

    DonMcJr New Member

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    Hmmm... I don't know if there's a right answer but if I were to Guess I'd put a piece of Newspaper on top of the queenright hive, make a few slits in it and then put the queenless hive on top...

    Or Maybe have the queenright hive on bottom then queen excluder then queenless hive on top...still with newspaper so they get used to each other...

    Again that is just my Hypothesis ( I got some big words too Tecumseh :wink: )
     

  3. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    I did the same combo Yesterday. I put the queen right on top. Not because it was queen right, but because it was weakest and I left fewer foragers returning to the old location. If the queenless had been the weakest, I would have moved it and it would be on top.
     
  4. kemptville

    kemptville New Member

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    Thanks!

    Here's another related question, the queenright hive that I claim above is in fact in the process of raising a new queen. It swarmed a week and a half ago and when I checked in on it I observed a few swarm cells in the upper chamber. Would placing a queenless hive with this post swarm hive work? Or am I asking for trouble?

    Marc
    www.facebook.com/apiary43
     
  5. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    My guess is, it will work fine as long as the queenless is not laying worker. Installing a queen cell in a queenless hive works quite well.
     
  6. kemptville

    kemptville New Member

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    I didn't even think of that Iddee - installing a queen cell in the queenless hive! It might be too late for me to do that at this point as I observed the queen cells on July 22nd. Darn it!
     
  7. Crofter

    Crofter New Member

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    Maybe it is getting late in the season anyway to get two hives up to speed for the winter. Better one live one than two deadouts. You might get some fall flow but it has not been a good season. Lots of folks with queen problems your way.
     
  8. kemptville

    kemptville New Member

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    What kind of queen problems crofter?
     
  9. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

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    Count your days from the swarm and the queen cells. You do not want to be moving a colony location it the queen is between her orientation flights and he mating flights as she could get lost or enter the wrong hive.

    As far as colony placement it depends on which colony is being moved. The colony that remains in the original location is the colony that will have the returning foragers that will return to the entrance being used. So you would not want those bees entering the super with the strange new queen.

    In most cases when combining you want to create a hive with the greatest population so you would use the location of the colony with the largest population. If they are using the bottom entrance, then the moved hive should be placed on top. If the colony is using both top and bottom entrances, the top entrance should be closed so the bees will fan and get the bees marching down to the bottom entrance and the new combine given an entrance out the back.
    Only if 2 hives to be combined are close beside each other or are the only 2 hives in the area will all the bees migrate to the new location.
    Keep in mind that in a colony that has been queenless and has little or no brood, most of the bee will be older and foragers that have oriented to their location so moving that colony will result in the forager bees returning to their old location and joining hives closest to their original location. Not strengthening the colony you intended.

    Should of started with the long answer to your short answer is... Like my daughters add when they ask a question. The Readers Digest version.
     
  10. Crofter

    Crofter New Member

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    Multiple supercedures, failing to return from mating, queen in hive but wandering, not laying. Just seems much harder to keep hives settled queenright. Besides the wet weather, maybe nosema? Just guessing on the latter but some high winter losses not too far NW of you.
     
  11. kemptville

    kemptville New Member

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    NW of me in Arnprior was hardest hit this winter. An eye opener for sure!

    Interesting about the supercedure issues. I'll have to keep my ears out for talk on that at the summer field day in Carleton Place this month.
     
  12. Crofter

    Crofter New Member

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    I had nearly given up on a small split containing capped queen cells. Figured she did not return from mating but yesterday found eggs and a new queen. I had taken newspaper with me expecting to combine. If you dont know the exact time of capping it can sometimes warp your sense of when to see results. Have another hive to check for new queen from another frame with cell about same timing. Will give it till the middle of the week to inspect; I know I have a queen in the nuc so no hurry. I think I have everything straight for queens now. I get antsy worrying about getting laying workers and have probably disrupted things on occasion by trying to fast forward the bees.