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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    El Cerrito, CA, USA
    Posts
    50

    Default Re: When to fuss about a walk away split

    Rats, I spoke too soon... turns out that it wasn't a queen laying eggs, but a worker. Obvious today, with multiple eggs in the cells, and all drones being raised. Never dealt with this before, so am leaning toward recombining with my strong hive -- newspaper between the brood box and the queenless box?

  2. #22
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    4,147

    Default Re: When to fuss about a walk away split

    If laying workers started just shake them out & remove the hive. Many of the bees will join other hives
    Dan

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    El Cerrito, CA, USA
    Posts
    50

    Default Re: When to fuss about a walk away split

    I just looked at Michael Bush's recommendations (http://www.bushfarms.com/beeslayingworkers.htm) and thought I might try stealing frames with eggs/larvae from my other hive and giving them to the queen-wrong one -- he suggests doing this once a week for 2-3 weeks. This might also work to prevent swarming in my giant hive? Ever tried it?

  4. #24
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    4,147

    Default Re: When to fuss about a walk away split

    I did one that way last year, although I did it late in the season & the queen didn't get well mated.
    If you have the patience, & the hive can afford the bees that will die over time, it works.
    Dan

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,212

    Default Re: When to fuss about a walk away split

    When in doubt a frame of eggs is always good insurance.

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beespanacea.htm

    > I did a walk away split on March 9th (25 days ago). By 3/16, there were already capped queen cells in the hive (fast!), by 3/24, at one of these queen cells was ripped open.

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesmath.htm

    If you do the math, you did the split on the 9th of March. They will start with a 4 day old (from when it was laid) larva. 12 days later (16 days total from when it was laid) she will emerge, which would have been the 25th of March. Two weeks later she would probably be laying, which would be the 8th of April, but it could take as long as the 15th of April. If you have no eggs by the 15th then she will be a drone layer. Sometimes eggs are very hard to find. You'll have open brood then by the 19th and capped brood for sure by the 24th of April at the latest. Those are both much easier to spot.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    El Cerrito, CA, USA
    Posts
    50

    Default Re: When to fuss about a walk away split

    I checked again this weekend and I definitely have laying workers. The only capped worker brood is on the frame of eggs that I dropped in last Saturday. In a last ditch effort to save the hive, though, I added another frame of eggs yesterday, hoping that they start raising a queen. If nothing by next Sunday, though, I'm thinking that I'll shake out the hive and call my first try at a split an (educational) failure. Seem reasonable?

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    West Bath, Maine, United States
    Posts
    1,138

    Default Re: When to fuss about a walk away split

    Does to me. A frame for 3 weeks to try and save the hive is the same investment as three frames at once to start over. I would not say a failure, it happens.
    4 yrs, Peak 14, back to zip, T lite; godfather to brother's 3.

  8. #28
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    4,147

    Default Re: When to fuss about a walk away split

    Since you've already gone this far go ahead & add the third frame, third or fourth week is when they usually start a queen cell. Its up to you, but you're already 1/2 way through the proses.
    Some splits don't work, just like some hives end up queenless after a swarm.
    Dan

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    El Cerrito, CA, USA
    Posts
    50

    Default Re: When to fuss about a walk away split

    Hm, yes, patience is not really my strong suit, I'm afraid. Maybe this is good practice. So as I understand it, I'd add one more frame this weekend, and then see whether they succeed in starting a queen over the course of the next week.

  10. #30
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    4,147

    Default Re: When to fuss about a walk away split

    You would know if they build the queen cell, it should be obvious in a couple days. Then it would be about 30 days from adding the frame until the new queen is laying.

    I like to put a piece of blue painters tape on my hive & write notes with dates on it. It helps when experimenting.
    Dan

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