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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Georgetown, KY, USA
    Posts
    41

    Default About to do first Cut-out in a week

    OK here is the deal, im going to Mississippi to help my dad (who is a first year beekeeper) do a cut-out. The hive is in a porch that is totally separated from the house so from what he has told me seems like they are limited to the porch. The owner doesn't care if we remove the face of the porch(it is a concrete slab). the owner says that the bees have been there for 5 years now but wants them gone because he is allergic. We have a bee-vac and all needed supplies. I know that we are to place the brood in the new box, im just wondering that if there is a lot of honey do we just place it in there as well? or break it up and separate the honey from the wax and feed it back to the bees. My next question is if there are enough bees, is it justifiable to start two hives by purchasing a new queen?

    thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Stillwell, KS
    Posts
    647

    Default Re: About to do first Cut-out in a week

    If your using medium boxes sometime you can rubber band capped honey comb into a frame or two, as long as the comb is not to wide and it fits the frame well. Don't bother trying to get any more than that, slicing thru honey to get it o fit into frames just creates a God-awfull-mess and you end up killing hundreds and hundreds of bees. Uncapped honey comb will just crush on you trying to put it into frames, brush or vacuum the bees off of it and throw it in a 5 gallon bucket, you can feed it back to the bees later. Best to just frame up the brood comb and pollen and call it good. Cut thru as little honey as you can, it just kills bees.

    I try to have three buckets handy as well as a box or two for brood frames. 1 bucket for capped honey (for me), one bucket for uncapped honey (to feed back later), and one bucket for miscellanious scraps that are drone comb, or to crooked or to small to fit into frames.

    I wouldn't split a cutout into two hives. I've found cutouts to be very tramatic to a colony and find it generally takes them about 6 weeks to recover from the trama and chaos and get back to growing good. Seems like even if I save the queen I get a two or three week break in the brood cycle.

    Another tip, I've found also it helps the bees to have a starter strip, like foundationless frames do, for your frames that your going to tie or rubberband comb into.

    Check out "JPthebeeman" videos on youtube, if you need a refresher coarse on removals.

    Good luck, post up some pictures.

    Don

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Georgetown, KY, USA
    Posts
    41

    Default Re: About to do first Cut-out in a week

    watched some JPthebeeman vids, very insightful. im just wondering whats the best way to feed the honey back to the bees if its not placed in the hive.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Stillwell, KS
    Posts
    647

    Default Re: About to do first Cut-out in a week

    I just spread it out a little in a clean bird bath or bucket about 200 yards from the hives. The bees will find it and recycle it over a couple of days.

    One other tip, go ahead and frame up all the brood comb even if there is some thats not currently being used. It take the bees a few weeks to start building comb again after a cutout and they are going to need some room to store that honey that your going to feed back to them. If you (or your dad) only have a hive or two, and you have a flow going I would freeze the uncapped honey for later in the summer when there is a dirth. If you give them all that honey back right away and they have no place to store it, they will back fill the brood nest and it will limit the room the queen has to lay.

    Good Luck. ....Don

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Georgetown, KY, USA
    Posts
    41

    Default Re: About to do first Cut-out in a week

    if i find the queen im going to place her in a trap but if for some reason i don't positively id her what are the indications that she isn't there? And at what point should i purchase a queen? also should i put lemongrass oil in the mediums i intend on placing them?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Stillwell, KS
    Posts
    647

    Default Re: About to do first Cut-out in a week

    Quote Originally Posted by mmarmino View Post
    if i find the queen im going to place her in a trap but if for some reason i don't positively id her what are the indications that she isn't there? And at what point should i purchase a queen? also should i put lemongrass oil in the mediums i intend on placing them?
    Good questions.

    I generally can't tell on a cut out when I've gotten the queen into their new hive during the removal by the way the bees are acting in the new box. Too much turmoil going on. But, you can sometimes tell if she is still in the old colony by the way the remaing bees are acting. Look for a large (say two or three handfuls) of bees that are gathered in clump towards the end of the job. Like JP instructs I always leave a center section of brood comb till dead last and don't remove it till just after sundown. I like to finsh 95% of the removal several hours before dark, go eat dinner or cut the grass, and go back at dusk. The queen and all the remaining bees will congrigate on the remaining piece brood comb and it makes it easier to find her if she is still in there. Some recommend that if your good at finding the queen and miss her while doing the cutout to go through the hive at home the next day and cage her. I'm not good at it so I don't bother.

    As far as the lemon grass oil, I use it if I'm not vacuuming.

    As far purchasing a queen, I give it a couple of weeks, you will be able to tell by the way the bees behave after 4 or 5 days, whether their queenless or not and I want the survivor genetics from the cutout if I can keep it. If your careful removing and putting up the brood comb they can make themselves a new queen if they need to. If you have other hives and your cutout comes up queenless follow Michael Bush's "Panacea" advice.

    Good luck, have fun, pick a cool day.

    Don

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