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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Berkey, OH, USA
    Posts
    1,487

    Post

    Hi all.

    What swarm prevention techniques do you all use with your TBH's?

    So far I have avoided swarms by taking splits out of the brood nest.

    I shake out the bees from the brood combs into a screened box. If I get the queen it doesn't matter.

    Then I cut up the brood comb and put it into frames, then shake bees out of the box into the new nucs.

    I leave at least half of the brood comb.

    Then replace the empty bars between existing brood comb, alternating an empty with a good brood comb bar.

    You have to wait until it warms up to do this though because of the disruption to the brood nest.

    Ideally one would have equipment that was totally interchangeable in which case you could manipulate the bars between and among hives.

    Anyone have any other ideas or see any problems with this approach?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    43,492

    Post

    >What swarm prevention techniques do you all use with your TBH's?

    I put empty bars in the brood nest during prime swarm season.

    >So far I have avoided swarms by taking splits out of the brood nest.

    But that will weaken the hive and cut into your harvest. If you want more hives, fine, but if you want honey you need to control swarming while expanding the brood nest.

    >Ideally one would have equipment that was totally interchangeable in which case you could manipulate the bars between and among hives.

    Which is why I like the long Langstroth medium boxes for my top bar hives. I can interchange equipment with all my Langstroth stuff which is all mediums.

    >Anyone have any other ideas or see any problems with this approach?

    I don't think you'll get much honey.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Bradenton, FL, and Davenport, IA, USA
    Posts
    930

    Post

    >>>>>>
    >So far I have avoided swarms by taking splits out of the brood nest.

    But that will weaken the hive and cut into your harvest. If you want more hives, fine, but if you want honey you need to control swarming while expanding the brood nest.
    <<<<<

    But a swarm would make things even worse. If you do your split early enough the bees can build up to full strength without the swarm incolination because they aren't strong enough to swarm. You don't want too many bees in a hive because they can swarm even after the cut off date if too strong. I do early splits as soon as drones are present. Within 6 weeks the hives are at full strength and really could through a weaker swarm if they wanted to.

    David,
    Depending on when you did the split, you will get plenty of honey. You loose honey if you split during swarm season, but if you split before swarm season, then you have 2 full sized hives.
    Scot Mc Pherson<br />McPherson Family Honey Farms<br />Davenport, IA<br />BeeWiki: <a href=\"http://beewiki.linuxfromscratch.org\" target=\"_blank\">http://beewiki.linuxfromscratch.org</a> <br /><br />Pics:<br /> <a href=\"http://linuxfromscratch.org/~scot/pics/bees/\" target=\"_blank\">http://linuxfromscratch.org/~scot/pics/bees/</a>

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