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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Lewiston Idaho USA
    Posts
    52

    Default Best way to make splits when your hives are full of bees?

    I just returned from helping a friend bring back 90 hives from the California Almond Pollination. His hives are overflowing with bees. Kind of looks like a beer mug poured to fast. We have enough brood and bees to make three hives out of each one. My question is what is the best way to isolate the queen to a particular box. It is not reasonable to attempt to find the queen in each box, it would take day days with the amount of bees in each box. When we try to shake to bees down into the first box, it is way to full of bees and the overflow the edges and we are concerned we could lose or crush the queen in doing so.

    What suggestions do you all have. I am hopeful some of you with commerical experiance can provide some sound wisdom as to how to best do this.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,462

    Default Re: Best way to make splits when your hives are full of bees?

    Set up the bottom box with the brood and stores you want for the old queen. Shake all the bees from the other box(s) in front on the ground or landing board. Place an excluder on hive and empty box on excluder. Set up the remaining frames of brood and stores in the top box in the order you prefer...for your remaining 2 splits...like honey brood brood empty/honey brood brood empty. Cover and leave over night. Next morning, the combs in the top box will be full of bees and no queens. Separate combs at middle into nuc boxes or singles and move to another yard. 3 divides and queens will be in the bottom.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Lewiston Idaho USA
    Posts
    52

    Default Re: Best way to make splits when your hives are full of bees?

    Michael, let me see if I understand this.
    1. Shake bees off some brood comb and place that in an empty box along with honey stores. This becomes the new bottom box.
    2. Place a queen excluder on top of the new bottom box.
    3. Shake the original bottom deep and second deep on the ground. Which would include the queen.
    4. Place the empty old bottom box and old second box on top of the excluder.
    5. The bees including the queen that have been shaken on the ground ground will reenter the new box and fill up the two empty boxes above the excluder. The two top boxes become the nucs.

    Do I have this correct? Will this work on migratory pallets?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Novato, CA
    Posts
    554

    Default Re: Best way to make splits when your hives are full of bees?

    I interpret this as keeping the bottom brood box in tact although stealing some brood frames from it perhaps making sure the queen is not on it. Smoke the bees down to it before you begin.
    Shake the other boxes in front after putting the queen excluder on top of the original bottom box.
    Chances are the queen will stay in that bottom box.

    Looking forward to Michael's clarifications. Tony, how many boxes are the hives made up of?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Lewiston Idaho USA
    Posts
    52

    Default Re: Best way to make splits when your hives are full of bees?

    CaBees, they are all double deeps. The queens in everyone so far have been laying in both deeps. It's amazing.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Hot Springs, Arkansas
    Posts
    306

    Default Re: Best way to make splits when your hives are full of bees?

    put one of those double screen boards, instant 2 hives! easy!

    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Rogers View Post
    CaBees, they are all double deeps. The queens in everyone so far have been laying in both deeps. It's amazing.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Montgomery County, NY
    Posts
    1,849

    Default Re: Best way to make splits when your hives are full of bees?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Rogers View Post
    CaBees, they are all double deeps. The queens in everyone so far have been laying in both deeps. It's amazing.
    If you want to isolate the queen split them apart and put a queen excluder between the two. 3 days later go see which one still has eggs in it

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