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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    LaGrange; Oldham County; Kentucky
    Posts
    158

    Default Anyone making splits in KY?

    Hi all. A friend wants me to help split some hives tomorrow. Was curious, any other Ky beeks splitting yet? I was in my own hive this afternoon, and didn't think to even look for drones. I did see some drone brood but didn't think to look for drones flying in particular. We want these splits to raise their own queens so will be pulling appropriate open brood. The weather is great and the blooms are blooming, and these hives are FULL of tons of bees, I just don't want to do anything risky. Thoughts?
    Last edited by MelanieWoosley; 04-05-2013 at 08:31 PM. Reason: Clarify

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,963

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    Yes, now is the time to do a split. If the weather continue to be good and warm then you can do a split. It takes one month
    to raise some good queens. Hopefully by then you will have some good laying queens. Be sure though to keep more bees for
    the split in case the weather does not cooperate. And feed feed feed them some more.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    LaGrange; Oldham County; Kentucky
    Posts
    158

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    Yes beepro it seems the conditions are right : if I can just know if drones are flying here yet. I may just see what we get into tomorrow. If no drones it will be a no go

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Evansville, IN
    Posts
    2,539

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    Just looked in my hives today for the first time this year. The "small" hive has lots of capped brood, a few drones, and enough empty comb in the top box to checkerboard with the second one down (both mediums). The "big" hive has only a little bit of maturing brood, lots of empty brood comb, and a supercedure cell (or at least a queen cup being drawn out).

    So I think I'll wait a while. I was planning to do cut-down splits this year to get more hives, but I don't think that would be a good idea if the "big" hive (named for the size of the swarm last year) is superceding their queen at the moment. Quite a bit of drone brood in that hive, capped mostly, and lots of empty cells, I think I'll wait.

    The other hive will probably get a cut-down on the next round of brood. We are behind here, usually have more warm weather by now. My grapes are just beginning to break bud and I'm usually worried that the new shoots will get frost damage by the first week in April, so I'm guessing swarm season will be a while away yet.

    No new wax in any of the hives, they've only had a few days of forage this spring, so I'm waiting and will check on them next week.

    Peter

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,963

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    Yes, I see the weather pattern much like us here of last month. I got 4 good laying queens now. When the drones emerged from my original hive there were no flying drones available for any virgin queens. But somehow they did got mated. How? Only answer was there are other hives
    from local keepers that have the flying drones ready for my queen bees. So this is a chance I have to take. Good thing that the weather
    is good so far. Are there any other beekeepers around with a booming hive also? Maybe their drones are already flying now. We just cannot see them hiding somewhere else.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    LaGrange; Oldham County; Kentucky
    Posts
    158

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    Thanks psfred. Very helpful. In my hive today, they had been drawing comb like mad! Tomorrow we will see what we have to work with as far as my friends hives go. I got distracted by burr comb when doing my inspection today. Initially I was trying hard to see if I could see drones. I forgot about that once I started tidying up.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,963

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    Peter, if you do a cut down on your big hive now will they cancel the supercedure queen cup?
    Then after the split they can make more new queen cells, right.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Bardstown, KY, USA
    Posts
    321

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    I am splitting one hive into 3 on Wednesday- but I'm adding mated queens from Walter T Kelly's Bees.
    Grandchildren are the best.... Bees a close second....

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    LaGrange; Oldham County; Kentucky
    Posts
    158

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    Ky beeks, are you seeing drones?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Evansville, IN
    Posts
    2,539

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    I have drones in both hives. Just across the river from Henderson here. The other way to check for drones is to hang around the hive in the early afternoon. Typically the drones fly from about 1 pm to about 4 pm, ditto for virgin queens, and you will hear them as they go in and out.

    Anyway, I'll not be doing a cut-down on the "big" hive, can't do anything with it until the new queen is laying in any case. I'll do a summer split on that one for an over-wintering nuc maybe. Since there is no brood at the moment, I suspect I have a virgin queen in there somewhere, I'll check next week to see how they are doing.

    This is the normal time for doing splits here, but with the extended winter, I think they are a few weeks behind and I'll wait til next weekend to do a cut-down on the other hive.

    Peter

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Park City Ky
    Posts
    1,936

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    Quote Originally Posted by MelanieWoosley View Post
    Ky beeks, are you seeing drones?
    Melanie.... I am in Park City, Ky, about 100 miles South West of you. Yes there are drones, and yes the hives are full of drone brood. I split out one hive today because it had 5 capped queen cells on one frame.

    I am getting my first queens for splits on Tuesday, but I will be using mated queens. However, if I find capped queen cells, I will split them out and let them make their own queens. Most of my hives are way ahead of what i thought they would be. It has been cold, however, most brood hives have 5 - 7 frames of brood in all stages. Today is the first day that I have looked inside. I checked about 25 hives and they are much futher along than I expected. Unless most of them are split, they are preparing to swarm.

    cchoganjr

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    benton ky
    Posts
    41

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    I'm in west ky. I split 2 nucs off my hive yesterday. I have drones in my hive but they aren't sexually mature. The bees have queen cells with a larvae inside. Yesterday was the first day with a 50 degree night. Expect swarms to start on the 27. I'm not that smart I just read charts. I think it was in dadant but in not 100% sure

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Bell County, KY, USA
    Posts
    414

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    Quote Originally Posted by MelanieWoosley View Post
    Ky beeks, are you seeing drones?
    Yep, the drone numbers are increasing.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,963

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    Yay! Spring is finally here. The bees know much more than us about the environment.
    You are very smart if you know how to read the chart. I am so dumb that I don't even
    know what kind of chart you are talking about. The weather chart or?

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Grayson, KY
    Posts
    290

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    Quote Originally Posted by MelanieWoosley View Post
    Ky beeks, are you seeing drones?
    Yes saw some in hives today. Not flying only in hives.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    LaGrange; Oldham County; Kentucky
    Posts
    158

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    Cleo, big gun, David, thank you! Once in the hives today, there were drones, in the hive and flying. These particular two hives didn't have queen cells, although one looked like it had started one. (It was the one w/ the most bees) ; we pulled three splits from the two hives which was conservative. It was a lovely day but they did get cranky towards the end, hindsight we took too long should have been in and out, but was doing a lot of talking and teaching.

    Would your next steps be? I'm feeding syrup via top feeder. When do you all typically check in after a split?

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,963

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    If the split have enough eggs and young larvae they will make some queen cells for you.
    It will take 3-5 days to see any cells they make. So you can do a hive check a few
    days from now to see.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    LaGrange; Oldham County; Kentucky
    Posts
    158

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    Cleo, I noticed the hives were way ahead of what I was expecting as well. With the cold snaps and snow we've had I was expecting delay but was pleasantly surprised. Thanks again for all your advice!

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Dresden ,Tn 38225
    Posts
    113

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    I am in upper northwest TN about 15 miles form KY line. I caught a swarm yesterday and talked to another club member who caught one last week and knew of another one. I found swarm cells in one hive the first of the week, which was really not expected with the weather we have been having. Plenty of drones in the hives and apparently plenty mature and flying in our area.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    LaGrange; Oldham County; Kentucky
    Posts
    158

    Default Re: Anyone making splits in KY?

    Wood yard anytime you want to send those swarms up here, I have seven swarm traps a-waitin'

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