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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pike, Pennsylvania, USA
    Posts
    295

    Default Introducing cells to a nuc?

    Hi Everyone,

    I wanted to get some feedback on how you all make up your nucs.

    I am trying to reduce drift when I make mine up so I'm looking at closing the bees in a little longer, here is how I'm currently making them;
    I select the resources I want to make a nuc, one frame of honey, one frame of capped brood and adhearing bees, one shake of bees off brood comb. The nucs are taken to another yard about 1 mile away(12 to 24 hrs queenless), cells are planted the next day at which point I open the entrance and let them fly. I read a previous post on planting cells in a mating box and the poster suggested keeping the box closed up until the cell had hatched, keeping it closed for two days after, then opening up the entrance.
    I have a couple concernes about this, heat build up and no water. I know the virgin won't have much of a smell to her until she's been mated and starts laying so I'm not sure of the benefit of keeping them closed in to minimize drift. I have had good success with mating, it just seems that I don't have the bees in those boxes I should have to get things going.
    Thanks for you opinions!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    syracuse n.y.
    Posts
    2,061

    Default Re: Introducing cells to a nuc?

    For my first batch of nucs for the year, I put in two frames of sealed brood, but I move mine more than two mile away, and plant the q cell as soon as the nucs get there, and never bother leaving them locked in. for nucs in warmer months I only use 1 1/2 frames of brood and only in the earliest nucs do I shake extra bees in. The only time I have had a problem with nucs being short of bees is if one of the nucs has a queen in it, that nuc ends up loaded with bees and all the bees have smiles on there faces. Some people do what they call trashing the hives, they put one frame from multiple hives in each nuc and leave them in the same yard, but would be hard to do if you are only putting one frame of bees in each nuc. I never tried it by leaving in the originating yard. Hope your having a nice vacation this winter.
    mike syracuse ny
    I went to bed mean, and woke up meaner. Marshal Dillon

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Grosse Ile, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    2,901

    Default Re: Introducing cells to a nuc?

    I have found that unless you move newly made up nucs at least 1 1/2 to 2 miles away from the parent yard, you are going to get considerable drift back. I also have experimented with confining bees in the hive for a couple days if you are only moving them shorter distances or not moving them at all, and it doesn't work, you still get drift back. Someone recently said here that bees will reorientate after three days of being confined, and I don't find that to be the case at all, in fact, I have moved free flying nucs to a different position in the same yard, like 30 feet or so, and then they get confined because of bad weather for over a week, and as soon as they get good weather to fly they go right back to the original location and cluster on the empty hive stand, so you can see that it takes long distance moving to eliminate drift back, that's really the only sure way to do it.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pike, Pennsylvania, USA
    Posts
    295

    Default Re: Introducing cells to a nuc?

    I usually divide my parent colonies between 3 yards, the furthest of which is 4/5 miles away. I would make nucs out of each yard then move it to another. I felt dedicating one of those yards for just nucs would help w/drift and robbing. I realize a little further then a mile would be better but I don't have that situation right now for a nuc yard. the other consideration is good coverage with drones. I also try and make up the nuc with nurse bees assuming that if any drifted they would be older field bees anyway.
    I appreciate the comments and will look at what I can do.

    Ah, Mike, I wish it were a vacation for me down there. I keep taking the fishing rod and it never leaves the truck, seems like when the work is done it's time to come home and rest

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,758

    Default Re: Introducing cells to a nuc?

    It's much less stress on the bees, and less for you to worry about, to put an extra shake of bees in to make up for drift and don't confine them...

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beessplits.htm#accountfordrift
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Brainerd, MN
    Posts
    544

    Default Re: Introducing cells to a nuc?

    Couldn't you put some open brood above an excluder the day before and use those for the split?
    Not Michael Bush. My name is Dan. Sorry for the confusion.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Pike, Pennsylvania, USA
    Posts
    295

    Default Re: Introducing cells to a nuc?

    I enjoyed reading that section
    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    It's much less stress on the bees, and less for you to worry about, to put an extra shake of bees in to make up for drift and don't confine them...

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beessplits.htm#accountfordrift

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