How Would You Do This Split?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Rutland County, Vermont,USA

    Default How Would You Do This Split?

    Hi Everyone,
    Going into my 3rd season this spring and I have never done a split before so its time. I am going to split 3 hives and know how I want to do 2 of them, but need thoughts on how to split a hive that I will need to transport 1.5 hrs away to my daughter's apiary after it is split. Besides the objective of increasing my daughter's apiary, I would like to use this split to deter the hive from swarming. I know there are different ways of accomplishing this, but it seems to me that the new hive from the split should include the old queen, leaving the old hive in place and letting it make a new queen. If I am wrong on this, please correct me because it would be much easier not to have to find the queen.
    My other question is how to keep the brood warm enough during transport for 1.5 hrs and still keep them ventilated? Just crank the heat in the car, or some other method? I am planning on using a Jester nuc box with added ventilation panels cut out. Also, when would you do this split? I am in Vermont and have had hives swarm in mid May at the dandelion and apple blossom season. Keep in mind that the temps can still be quite cool compared to what most of you are used to in April and May. I would, of course, try to pick a nice, warm day to do this. Many thanks! J

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Decatur / Cullman, also. 35603

    Default Re: How Would You Do This Split?

    I read about walk away splits, and doing a split with adding a queen cell from frame with cell capped, and hatching out in New hive split. Lots of good bee videos on YouTube. I watch all of the " 628 dirtrooster."
    He's from Georgia, and has a nice info on most everything bees !!! Simple and easy to watch, and informitatve. He's got about a hundred vids. Find him on youtoub and search for splits.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    KC, MO, USA

    Default Re: How Would You Do This Split?

    >but it seems to me that the new hive from the split should include the old queen, leaving the old hive in place and letting it make a new queen.

    Sounds like a "cut down split" Usually you take 2 to 4 frames or more and the queen with a few shakes of bees. Moving them will prevent foragers from returning to the old hive. The old hive will make a bunch of queen cells, you can make more splits with the queen cells for leave them. If the hive is swarmy I may remove all but two queen cells. Check them in 30 days (from egg to laying queen) to verify they made a new queen. If not give them a frame with eggs or queen cells from another hive to speed them up. depending on the population if I give them another chance or combine them to another hive. Do not let them go too long without brood they will turn in to a laying worker hive.

    You plan on transporting them inside the vehicle? If the temp is comfortable for you, a split should have no problem keeping brood warn. It's usually overcrowded bees that can get overheated.

    Our swarm season is mid April through June, splits anytime during that time do well. They have lots of time and resources to build up quickly.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Aylett, Virginia

    Default Re: How Would You Do This Split?

    Search Beesource for fly back split. Lauri goes into great detail as to why this split does well. Basically, you move the old hive to a new location, it can even be in the same yard, and leave the queen and one brood frame and a whole lot of foundation in the original location. The old hive with all the nurse bees will make several high quality queen cells and the split with all the foragers and old queen will draw comb like crazy. I will be splitting both of my overwintered full sized hives this way in just a few weeks. I'm going to give the nuc till April and then do the same thing.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.


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