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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Jackson, MO

    Default Re: Walk away splits

    Dandelions are the key? I will be watching my neighbors yard to time my walk away split.

    My mentor has had good success with a walk away splits in the past. Until this year when one of his splits was robbed into oblivion after he pulled supers to extract honey.

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Rock Port, MO. USA.

    Default Re: Walk away splits

    Has anyone tried the Snellgrove or double screen board to do a split? From what I have read, it seems to be a safer way of splitting. If the one queenless hive doesn't make a queen successfully, the two hives could be rejoined with minimal problems.

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Apr 2009

    Default Re: Walk away splits

    Quote Originally Posted by genie View Post
    Thanks eastside buzz, that's what i was afraid of cause i really do want to get honey
    If that is the case I would pull a couple frames of bee's with Brood add a queen in put in a 5 frame box with a frame to build out during a flow preferably and let them grow. This way you reduce the size of the double box but not to much that they cant build out the frames and give you honey. If you split the two boxes now they have a whole box to fill before they make you any honey. If you do it at the beginning of the season that nuc will also make it to two boxes by the end of the season.

    Quote Originally Posted by chrisd4421 View Post
    If you hive is strong enough, have you considered a cut down split?
    Cutdown is a good option also.

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    KC, MO, USA

    Default Re: Walk away splits

    Last spring was my first spring as a beek. I had 3 hives and wanted more. I had no drawn comb.
    I did walk away splits on them all, each a few days to a week apart. Started as soon as I saw the first drones (maybe end of mar)
    All of the splits had queen cells in the hives, which were also split equally.

    First hive was a 50/50 one deep and one honey super.
    Second 33/33/33 was a 2 deep.
    Third was 33/33/33 was a deep and a half.

    The flow was good the bees went crazy. By the end of spring this is what I ended with

    First two, had/made queen, filled 2 deeps each and one 80% full honey super (left for the bees).
    Second splits had/made queen,3 hives each grow to 2 deeps.
    Third splits 30 days later had no queens so I gave them all frames from the other successful splits, 30 days later 2 had queens and grew to one and half deeps. The third was given another frame which it again did not make a queen, it was later given a queen and a few bees from a small cutout. It was robbed right after I put the new queen in(it turned out she was ok). I stopped the robbing just so it could start the next day. I moved the hive one mile away and it has done well since.

    Turned 3 hives into 8 that were all bigger than the starts. Plus they all donated several frames of brood for all the swarms I caught. All hives had to draw new comb.

    Next year I want production hives, as soon as I see drones I will take the queen and a few frames of brood and make a nuc. I will then leave the hives to make a new queen. This will give them a break in brood to help in honey production and mites. Also a strong hive with the flow just starting should raise good queens. Similar to mda splitter except I modified it to an earlier flow. IMO for my area there is not enough time to further split the main hive to increase the population then recombine it in time for the flow.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Dexter, Missouri USA

    Default Re: Walk away splits

    I would use frames with swarm cells if you're doing walkaway splits. They were fed royal jelly from day one, and during periods of optimal nutrition. Emergency cells are not nearly as consistent. Doolittle figured that out in the 1800's. It works like this..... Bees pick several "appropriate" aged larvae and begin feeding them royal jelly. Typically the first one that hatches, destroys the competition. It seems to me that the first one to hatch was the oldest larvae that still developed into a queen, and therefore more likely to have been fed worker mix at some point, inhibiting complete development of the ovaries. Less developed ovaries=less eggs/lower populations. That's the science behind Doolittles observations of emergency queens being inferior.
    There are a lot of variables in beekeeping. I've had emergency queens before that were awesome...... But if you have options use swarm cells, or properly grafted cells.

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    jackson county, alabama, usa

    Default Re: Walk away splits

    i don't think all emergency queens are inferior.

    i have one made last spring that i will probably graft from this year.

    likewise, not all queens made in a palmer style cell builder end up great.

    a queen is not proven until she is proven.

    (and by extension, a colony is not proven until it is proven, i.e. for desirable traits)

    fair to say though, the likelihood of getting a great queen (and a better colony) is better when conditions are optimal for doing so.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives


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