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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Kingston Springs, TN
    Posts
    117

    Default TBH swarmed, questions about whats next

    My TBH swarmed on Saturday morning. I found them and hived them in a langstroth. I am worried about the existing tbh. I am going to inspect it in the morning, but I found a queen cell on the outside observation window on the back side that I dont usually open. I know they are just bees and they dont know that they are in a tbh. But what im getting from reading is that they could cast numerous after swarms. If they have 4 queen cells, should I eliminate 2 or 3 to reduce that risk ? Honestly they dont have enough bees to do any more swarms, but again., ive read that they will cast after swarms with virgins. Or should I put queen cages on the cells to protect them until they hatch and then remove them and put them in a mating nuc ? My only preference here is to keep them from casting a tiny swarm and decimating whats left of the tbh, plus them dying.
    My blog and website: FromtheHive.org

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Kingston Springs, TN
    Posts
    117

    Default Re: TBH swarmed, questions about whats next

    No opinions on what to do with multiple queens cells in a tbh that just swarmed ? leave them alone ? crush all but one ? Am I risking virgin queen after swarms ? Am I thinking too much about this ?
    My blog and website: FromtheHive.org

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    St. Louis, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    627

    Default Re: TBH swarmed, questions about whats next

    Do you have a nuc handy? I'd make up a nuc with two as a bit of insurance for if one doesn't make it or they afterswarm.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Essex, England, UK
    Posts
    27

    Default Re: TBH swarmed, questions about whats next

    You could choose to leave them as they are. I choose not to crush any queen cells and let them take a chance. Generally, if they have already lost 50% to the prime swarm and the parent colony is low on numbers, they wont throw many (if any) cast swarms. Provided that parent colony is disease free, the bees dont risk its survival just to throw lots of after swarms. They already have their plan so let them continue. Once you have seen a prime swarm go, its all a little bit late for remedial action. The only real down side for you, is dont expect to take much of a honey harvest from them this year.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,593

    Default Re: TBH swarmed, questions about whats next

    I would not destroy any queen cells. I would open the brood nest, but not too much as they have lost some bees, but you also want to prevent after swarms. Two empty bars in a moderately populated hive should work. If that was a primary swarm you won't see a laying queen for another three weeks.

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

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Kingston Springs, TN
    Posts
    117

    Default Re: TBH swarmed, questions about whats next

    Thank you ! I just went in for the first time since the swarm. They have 4 queen cells and luckily plenty of bees, which is good and bad I guess. I was worried they would swarm again and leave a small amount of bees in the hive. I didnt think there were that many left, which Is why I was so worried. But there are still lots of bees in there and plenty of capped brood. So I think an afterswarm is a real possibility. I took your advice and put 2 empty bars where the majority of the brood is though. So hopefully that will keep them distracted. On another topic though, ive been wanting to raise a queen to requeen a weak hive. I havent had much luck yet with my nicot. I have mini mating nucs and 5 frame nucs that are empty. Could I cut out one of the queen cells from this hive and out it in a mini nuc and let it hatch with a few cups of bees in it ? Or what would be the best way to steal a sealed queen cell from them to hatch. I also have queen cages that go around cells and a push in cage. I think I have all the tools and the queen cell, but no the confidence to know what to do.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Canada BC Delta
    Posts
    447

    Default Re: TBH swarmed, questions about whats next

    You could cut a cell and place it the weak hive. I would put it in the cell protector until she emerges and then release her. She can then mate right from your weaker hive.

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