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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    McAlester, OK
    Posts
    101

    Post

    When stimulative feeding is initiated in February and results in overcrowding before the desired time to split a hive in April, what management techniques can be used to prevent swarming prior to making the split?

    It is requested that the management techniques address hives wintered in the following configurations: double deep hive bodies; and, three medium hive bodies.

    Thanks,

    Jim Young

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Langley, B.C. Canada
    Posts
    413

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    McAlester, OK
    Posts
    101

    Post

    Terry, Thanks for posting the website; however, I do not believe it adequately addresses swarm prevention techniques relating to overcrowding caused by stimulative feeding. I'm not inclined to believe that reversing hive bodies will alleviate overcrowding directly related to bee numbers, brood, capped honey and pollen stores. My primary interest is doing a cut-down split two weeks before the Black Locust tree nectar flow.

    I'm seeking discussion on the possibility of removing honey filled frames from the hive bodies and either placing them into another hive body placed above the original hive bodies or store the frames of honey outside the hive for later use. Then separate the brood nest frames and either place one or two frames of foundation or drawn comb in the center of the brood nest. Another alternative would be to leave the honey frames in place in the original hive bodies and move the two topmost center brood frames up into the center of an additional hive body and replacing the two brood frames with either foundation or drawn comb. The remainder of the additional hive body would be filled with either foundation or drawn comb or a combination thereof.

    Jim Young

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    oneonta al.
    Posts
    848

    Post

    could go in each hive ever 10 day's & cut out queen cell's. sure hope you don't have many hives. >>>>Mark

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,949

    Post

    I would work on keeping the brood nest opened up. Pull some honey out and move it to a new box above and put some empty frames drawn or not, in the brood nest. Don't over do it, but a good strong brood nest can take a couple of empty frames in the middle.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    McAlester, OK
    Posts
    101

    Post

    Michael, Thanks for the input on opening up the brood nest. That appears to be the best approach.

    Mark, I'm not too crazy about checking 12 hives every 10 days until about 1 April to destroy queen cells. Hopefully, maintaining an open brood nest is a better plan to alleviate overcrowding in the hives receiving stimulative feeding, thus prevent swarming until I am ready to do the cut-down split on 1 April. In my area, first Spring swarms normally occur about 10 April.

    Thanks again to those providing input.

    Jim Young

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    North Georgia mountains
    Posts
    923

    Post

    Not specifically checking for queen cells, but when I see them I do cut them, and it's once a week with far more than 12 hives.

    BubbaBob

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    McAlester, OK
    Posts
    101

    Post

    BubbaBob, thanks for the input on removing queen cells on a weekly basis when they are observed. As you and Mark suggests, I may have to resort to queen cell removal on a weekly to 10 days basis if the management practice of maintaining an open brood nest in the upper hive body does not deter swarming.

    I have the challenge of this being my first venture into cut-down splits plus I'm dealing with an unusually warm winter pattern resulting in trees such as elms, maples, redbuds and wild plum trees blooming a month early. Elm trees began blooming on 18 January versus about 15 February. Such an unusual warm winter and spring could possibly result in mid to late March swarming flights which normally occurs in my area about 10 April. Therefore, the timing on performing the cut-down split may become even more critical in insuring it is done before the temperature conditions are ideal for their normal swarming flights which are launched just before the major nectar flow.

    Setting these challenges aside, I'm planning on periodically inserting a frame or two of foundation into the center of the upper part of the brood nest while removing frames of honey up into the ends of an added hive body which will also contain frames of foundation. Hopefully by using foundation, the bees will consume some of the honey stores to draw the comb, thus further relieving some of the overcrowding in the hive as it relates to space for brood rearing.

    Anyone having experience on doing cut-down splits are more than welcome to discuss their management techniques, particular those which do and do not work. I'll post my successes and/or failures on my efforts with cut-down splits.

    Jim Young

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