A while back I attempted to split my hive, but they failed to produce a new queen (rat smashed the cell) and I ended up with a laying worker. Almost two weeks ago I purchased a queen to try and save the split. It seems to have been successful, and I learned a lot in the process. The big lesson was that it wasn't nearly as difficult as I thought it was going to be.

Cleaning the hive out to get rid of the laying worker was actually easy (it helped that it was only one deep), although I wondered what the neighbors thought, what with me fully suited up and lugging a hive into the front yard, bees all around. The most difficult part was deciding to kill all the bees that didn't make it back to the hive. They were milling around on the side of the house, so to prevent any chance of the laying worker(s) making it back I hit them with some soapy water. Thankfully, it seems to have been very quick.

To make a long story short, after reassembling the give and returning it to where it had been (and facing a large group of agitated bees wondering where their home was), I put the queen cage in (that was easy). Two days later I uncorked the cage (that was scary) and added a marshmallow. Five days after that I inspected the split, and actually saw the queen on the comb, doing her thing. The bees actually seem happier, and there's a lot more activity from that hive now as well.

[On a side note, some of you may remember that I re-queened my main hive a few weeks ago, as well. I'm happy to say that seems to have been a success, too, with eggs and larvae in abundance.]