Re: When to split a package?
Splitting is based on the hive population that will support another nuc hive. Doesn't matter if you start it from a package or a nuc hive. With timing, it will depend on your local environment. And you should do it as early as possible when there are enough bees to do so. Some will do a 50/50 split while others will make a 5 frame nuc split. Feeding will help them establish faster before the cold winter sets in. Because I don't follow traditional I took 3 hives to split 6 nucs out of them in a fairly populated hive. This will help the new queens to establish faster. With good timing and the production hive's help, these nucs will grow much faster. Maybe they will be able to harvest some nectar on the Autumn flow too. I'm also planting echium to help them along.
Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?