Never say never.
Never say never.
Another update. Checked to see if the Italian queen cell had emerged and found that it had (I had moved this frame up into the top Italian side super for easier access.) I haven't looked through the brood nest for eggs yet.
But looking through the supers I found a frame that I had moved up into a super in mid December had an emerged queen cell on it! Doh! I caused it! The virgin queen would have being the one who killed the Italian queen. Also, I had already removed a queen cell of this same frame, 10 days after I had moved it into the super. So I don't know how I missed this other queen cell.
In regard to the frame I notched from the Carniolan queen, they have made one queen cell on one of the notches, and it is sealed. So I have moved this cell (in the four frame box it was in) and set up a Nuc.
Update for those who are interested:
After a couple of weeks I checked the Italian side and found another queen cell on the edge of a frame, in the middle of the old broodnest (which now was completely full of lots of capped pollen and honey). No other brood at all, no empty space, except around the edges. Just the single queen cell with a larvae that was just about ready to be sealed. I moved this frame up so I could check it easier.
I also checked the Carniolan side and saw the queen.
A week later I checked the queen cell and it was empty and starting to be torn down.
A couple of weeks later I checked the Italian side again and there was still no sign of eggs.
Since then I hadn't checked the hive until this Saturday.
The last couple of weeks I noticed a lot more young bees doing orientation flights in the later afternoon, but many of these bees have different markings, literally half the abdomen (back end) is Carniolan and the other half a light Italian marking.
So Saturday went into the hive, without smoke as usual, and they were MEAN. Also they had glued up everything with propolis. This is a totally different hive! They must definitely have a new queen. Looking like the virgin queen must have gone into the Carniolan side. I didn't get into the broodnest. So haven't seen what she looks like. But found a few frames up the top with decent areas of capped drone cells.
So it looks like I'll be getting them to make a new queen now!
The Nuc actually made two queen cells on the frame that I had notched. They now have a nice Carniolan queen that is laying like crazy.
I have done this using a carni and itialin queen as well but the set up was different. I sat them up in april with the carni in the bottom super and the italian it the top two supers and there is is only one word to discribe that-PROLIFIC. By june the bottom box had no honey or pollen, just brood, and the italians lower box was 8 frames of brood and the top box was 6.5. It's no wonder that when the blackberries and clover flow turned on I did 7 standards of honey on her. But even the regular double queens are good too. I ran a lot of DQ's through the 90's but not so much in recent years since doing pollenation but now that I'm stepping back from pollenation and going back to honey production I might do a lot more DQ's again.
Will Gruenwald Chilliwack BC
Is there any advantage to doing this set up with two new packages? Both carnies. Would a person be better off with just installing in two hives? Thinking about strength for next winter. Not worried about honey this year.
Two queen hives can be a little tricky. If you only have 2 packages, run them as individual hives. Worry about the fancy stuff when you have mastered the basic stuff. I know of one commercial stationnary beekeeper who runs all his honey producing hives this way and he says most years it pays off to have 2 queen colonies but some years it is not worth the trouble.
Besides if you want two hives for winter, start with two this spring.
I have seven hives. Just wanted to try something new.
thoroughly enjoyed this thread. i have a hard enough time tryin g to keep up w the hives i have, but may have to try this
If starting with packages I would put in a partition and let them get to a few frames of brood each. Ideally they should be similar in size and amount of brood when merged. This is because the queen with the most brood is preferred, so when there are similar amounts of brood there is no obvious drift. Otherwise the queen who has less brood may not survive.
When wintering I would divide them again, as one queen may be left behind an excluder as the cluster moves to stores. Also again, preference will be given to the queen who starts laying first and the other one may not survive going into spring.
TNT: Go for it.I thought if these were your first two hives the benefit would not outweigh the risks. That is one nice thing about this hobby/profession, there are many things to learn, many methods.
Now there's three queens!
A few weeks ago I found that there appeared to be two broodnests on the one (old Carniolan) side. One in the bottom box and one in the second super, with only two frames of brood in the first super that was in-between them. I didn't see any queens as they were still a big testy, so I moved the top (second) super to the other side to see if there were actually two queens.
Well they made queen cells in that box and today I saw the new virgin queen. She hasn't started laying yet.
The bees were much nicer today as the Autumn flow has started.
So I did a much thorough examination of the broodnest on Carniolan side. Well in the first super I found the old Carniolan queen (who is marked)! She is still alive!
Then in the brood box I found the other queen! She is definitely from the original Italian queen, as she is mostly an orange colour with only a bit of a black tip. So the two queens have been coexisting in the same boxes for up to three months.
I've now made another split and moved the Carniolan queen so she doesn't get killed. I prefer her workers!
Now that's the third split from this hive this season.
Thanks for the updates Matt. Very interesting thread.
I've refrained from doing a double queen hive because of the obvious problems with the stack method. I'm going to build a double queen hive this year and have only a few weeks to do so. I noticed on your sight that you have pictures of you 3x10 frame long hive. Did you find that this worked better than the 2x10 frame long, with a "U" shaped brood, you did earlier?
On the 2x10 hive you had mesh on the bottom of the super. (I've never been clear if upper three boxes were open inside so that the bees could move from the upper broods to the center super of that one. I'm assuming they would have to in order to lay up honey since there is mesh on the bottom. Please verify or correct me if I've misunderstood.
Now on the 3x10 if I understand properly, over the brood box you put two supers in the center with a short lid on each side. I assume that you also have a screen dividing the brood box to keep your queens apart. When do you put the 1st super on and is this after you remove the screen, once there are 3 frames of brood on each side?
Hi Kathy, the 3x10 long hive has worked well. I have a vertical queen excluder in the middle of the hive. It's just like a follower board with a rectangle hole in it and half a queen excluder stapled to it. So each queen has 15 deep frames each. You can just super each side as you would a normal Lang hive. I do not remove the queen excluder most of the season, but replace it in late Autum (fall) to separate the two sides over winter.
One on side I could still get access the brood frames. On the other side they back filled the outside frames and I had to take off the super to get to the brood nest later in the season.
With the U shape Broodnest in the 2x10 box they actually got into the middle super via the 10 frame width lid, because the sides were 4 frame boxes.
Michael, in the 3x10 hive I've had them supersede a queen on one side while there was a queen in the other side. There were honey frames between the two broodnests.
I greatly appreciate your thorough reply. I'm fairly new to beekeeping, only a few years and up to 4 hives this year. You've stirred a few more questions that need answering before I'll know exactly what to do.
1. Even if it weren't more productive as a two queen hive, the long hive would be worth it to save labor, and my back, but I'd like to know if the honey yield truly is considerably more using the long hive with 2 queens vs. either a 1 queen hive or the 2 queen stack hive?
2. I noticed on the 3x10 hive you have bottom entrances. Which do you recommend, the top as on the 2x10 or the bottom as on the 3x10 long hive? In my thinking the top entrances would same time when they are laying up in the supers? Or is there another reason to keep them on the bottom?
3. I noticed on your 2x10, your cover is at a slant. Why is this? and is there an inner cover needed? Is the cover of the 3x10 slanted as well?
4. Would you consider putting a thin, slide out, "white" board above the bottom board for mite control; good idea or not?
5. Have you written down any plans for making your 3x10. If so, will you share them? :~) If you have and don't want to share them, I understand. Please don't feel obligated. It would just be a real time saver for me, seeing I'm only weeks from receiving my bees.
Thank you so much, Matt,
1. I have not used a 2 queen stacked hive, but the 2 queen long Lang has definitely produced a bit more honey than two individual hives.
2. There are both top and bottom entrances. The top entrances are in the lids. Air flow is better if it is vertical.
3. The slant on the 2x lids was on the inside of the the lid. I don't think it made much difference other than to help drain condensation. The 3x doesn't have this. There are hive mats on top of the frames to stop comb being built above the frames. The hive mats are simply a piece of vinyl flooring cut so that there is a 1 inch gap both front and back.
4. We don't have problems with mites so have not used a 'white' board. The bottom of the hive does slide out (sideways), so that it can be cleaned. No reason that you couldn't add a shim with mesh on it above that.
5. In terms of plans, it is really no different than making a standard hive, just the width is 3 times longer.
The legs are made in a 'H' shape looking from the side. So the hive just sits in the top of the two 'H' shaped legs and is screwed on front and back. The bottom of the 'H' has extra wood on inside of the legs to help support the weight on the cross bar.
The lids are simply a sheet of Marine grade plywood with shims. The front shim is not as high, so there is a bee space directly next to the plywood. This allows the entrance to be reduced or closed off if needed. Put a ventilation hole or two at the back of the lid as well.
The lids are what took the most time to make. See here for more information: http://www.beesource.com/forums/show...ottom-entrance
Thank you again. Only two more simple questions.
1. How do you keep rain from getting in the hive with the split top pieces?
2. I'm afraid that I cannot tell how you've made the bottom board to slide in. Do you have a picture? or simple explanation?
If you don't mind I'm going to make some modification suggestions. Please feel free to shoot them down if for any reason you think they are not good. I'd like to know.
1. Instead of using a rigid board on top of the frames, I'd use duck cloth (the same material bee suits are made of). That way if you lift off, say three pieces from one end, you can simply flip the cloth out of the way instead of removing the whole board.
2. I'd make the hive a little longer to accommodate feed the bees in the spring. Here is a video that would basically explain what I'd do. The video is 15 min. 37 seconds long. If you fast forward to 14 mins. 16 second mark, you'll see what he did. I would use larger jars though. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w4qvPZaOXFo
3. Oh, the most important question: are there any modifications that you would make on the next one?
I'm very excited about making your hive. I'm in Alaska and I know of no one that is using anything like what you've made. Everyone I know is using the stack hive method.
Last edited by MurrayK1; 03-09-2015 at 10:48 PM. Reason: forgot to add a link
1. Unfortunately I have had to use a sheet of plastic over the top of the hive held down with bricks. The bees will propolize the gaps after a few days or so though.
2. It's not how I originally intended. The plywood base is just not attached and I can slide out the two bars holding it in place. Then slide out the plywood.
1. The hive mat is not rigid. It is soft and flexible also called linoleum. Others use old animal feed bags.
2. Up to you. I do not feed the bees unless the bees have run out honey in a dearth. I feed using zip lock bags.
3. The base should instead have a 1" shim, front and back with entances in the front and a plywood base. Hinged side shims that can fold down. Then a sheet of plywood placed of top of the other plywood sheet which can be slid out.
Thank you!!! You've been very helpful.
Thought you'd like to see what I ended up with. I now have my long hive made. I'll be painting it next week.
The lid has a 1" piece of R5 foam for insulation sandwiched in between the boards. The bee entrances have different size blocks made slightly beveled to wedge the hole snugly. The brood sits on the bottom board and is removable.
P1050985 (Medium).jpgP1050984 (Medium).jpg P1050982 (Medium).jpg P1050983 (Medium).jpg
I'll have two foam dividers creating a small brood area in the center, narrowing the brood to about 9 frames, with a screened divider in the middle of them to separate the queens. these can be removed later and expanded out as they need the room and require less insulation. I will sit three brood boxes on top of the inner covers, with the center on used for a feeder until nectar begins to flow. The lid will fit on top of those. When it's time to place supers, I'll use three, starting off with only the center one accessible for laying up nectar and expand from there.