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Split a Hive and Found Queen cells.

1472 Views 2 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  Jbetschart
Here is the short question:
I just installed a new mated queen in her cage yesterday into a fresh split and that same evening I found (looking in through the bottom screen) three caped queen cells. So do I destroy the capped cells or will my new queen do it for me.

Here's is how I got there:
I have a strong hive overwintered that I planned to split do avoid a swarm.
Last Friday I separated the two Full deeps to see where the queen was since I have not been able to find her. All the foragers flew back to the bottom deep box and the other deep has a lot of bees in it but no foragers just nurse bees from what I can see. After keeping them separated for 2 days I moved over the one without the queen to the new stand and installed the new caged queen yesterday (Sunday). Then yesterday evening I looked underneath to see what was going through the bottom screen and noticed what looks like three capped queen cells. So I figure my two choices are when I let her out of the cage I can remove the capped cells (1). Or will my new queen destroy the capped cells once she is let out from her cage(2)?

I don't think my original queen in the original side of the split got hurt or missing even through I cant find her because they are very active and bringing in pollen still.
I also don't think I lost a swarm because both boxes are packed with bees.

Please give me some advise on my next steps about the queen cells.

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If the queen is around in the original box, you should find eggs, and all should be well. If not, I might put one of your queen cells in there.

You didn't mention whether the queen cells where supercedure or swarm cells; or why you chose to re-queen. But:

I would be tempted to pull the queen cells in the second box before installing the new queen... and,

I would be tempted to try a third split in a nuc with the queen cells.

All that having been said, my besetting sin is to get greedy about making increases, and leave hives too weak.
Ill check the original box to see if I see small eggs to verify the queens healthy. The queen cells were in the second box.

Queen cells were at the bottom of the frames which I think says swarm but they are capped which confuses me since It doesn't look like anyone has gone anywhere.

I didn't choose to re-queen just add a new queen to my split side.
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