Snelgrove Method 2 (Modified) - Page 2
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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Covington County, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    1,370

    Default Re: Snelgrove Method 2 (Modified)

    Gww and Nancy: Yes, it was the bottom (Parent) hives that swarmed. If I had it to do over again, I would not have diverted the foragers from the top back to the bottom. I certainly would not have done it on day 5 AND day 10. I have read Snelgrove's book (I have a 1943 hardback edition) and I have several copies of Wally Shaw's paper that I have highlighted and keep at least one in my truck for reference.

    I am stunned that they swarmed so soon. I will say that everything started very early this year. Pollen was being hauled in in earnest in mid-January. I had drones in the hive in the last week of January with heavy brood and a huge population. I should not have attempted to keep the foragers in the parent hive this far out from the nectar flow. February foragers will be dead before my flow begins anyway. I don't know how much difference it would have made, but it is the only thing I can think of.

    The only cool thing about the experience is that I happened to be visiting my hives yesterday when they both swarmed simultaneously. I caught some video of the event. The swarms took off simultaneously and combined in the air. It was really incredible to be in the middle of. I am not social media savvy, but I have an instagram account and I posted it there. If you want to see, I think I have successfully linked it below.

    There are 3 videos and 2 photos. You have to swipe left to get to the additional posts. (You guys probably know that, but I just figured out how to do it)

    https://instagram.com/p/Bg4FcM5l3An/

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  3. #22
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Rosebud Missouri
    Posts
    3,931

    Default Re: Snelgrove Method 2 (Modified)

    Psm
    Well, if you got to lose bees, what a cool way to do it.
    My season is starting real slow. They are talking 1 to 3 inches of snow sunday and still not 60 degree day schedualed till the eigth. Lots of rain and a fear from me that I am handling it wrong and starving my bees. Just went three more days of rain rain rain and I am as worried as I get.

    On your bees, I wonder if you would have had one more super on your bottom part of your split if the bees would have swarmed?

    The last swarm that happened while I was standing there was comming out between my hive bodies like yours is from the back of your entrance reducer. That is how bad some of my boxes sit on each other. Thanks for taking the time to show it. Plus, I am dumb enough on computer stuff that your explination on how to watch your vidio and look at your pict, was helpful to a guy like me.
    Cheers
    gww
    gww
    zone 5b

  4. #23
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Algoma District Northern Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    4,577

    Default Re: Snelgrove Method 2 (Modified)

    psm; your season is so much earlier than Snelgroves England, that some things don't work out the same. You may have to do the second removal of capped brood from the bottom box. I had one of my first trial colonies start making swarm preps because (I think) I set them up too early and did not slow the bottom colony down by installing quite a few undrawn frames. My season is as short and late as Snelgroves location so his timing and predictions work out quite well for me. If your bees lean more toward Italian rather than carniolan behavior that probably has an influence too.

    Rather than let them swarm from the bottom box, have you considered pulling the queen out with two or three frames and brood for a small split, and let them make a new queen in the bottom? I have shaken out a Taranov swarm from the bottom box which collects the queen and the majority of non flying bees which are supposedly a major swarm trigger. The taranov swarm really goes down to business and the well populated queenless bees in the original bottom box are motivated to regroup and forget all about swarming.

    I have a hive lift which will allow lifting all the upper boxes undisturbed in one shot, and allow manipulation of the bottom box. I dont commonly use it but would if the return to swarm conditions was a common occurrence in my conditions. So far, management based on the Snelgrove division board works well for me.
    Frank

  5. #24
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Kamloops, BC, Canada
    Posts
    1,407

    Default Re: Snelgrove Method 2 (Modified)

    I've had good success with the board so far. But the way I do it really messes up the age structure from the beginning. The queen in the bottom 2 boxes only has a skeleton staff with almost all the resources going to the top boxes with brood. Then she gets a bunch of foragers after the queen cells are made. The top box loses its foragers and most of its queen cells.

    I think part of the selection process is making queens from strong hives that respond to swarm control. I would be making a disproportionate number of new starts from those sorts of hives.

  6. #25
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Algoma District Northern Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    4,577

    Default Re: Snelgrove Method 2 (Modified)

    Quote Originally Posted by lharder View Post
    I've had good success with the board so far. But the way I do it really messes up the age structure from the beginning. The queen in the bottom 2 boxes only has a skeleton staff with almost all the resources going to the top boxes with brood. Then she gets a bunch of foragers after the queen cells are made. The top box loses its foragers and most of its queen cells.

    I think part of the selection process is making queens from strong hives that respond to swarm control. I would be making a disproportionate number of new starts from those sorts of hives.
    This has been my experience too. Perhaps it is because our lattitude and flow is similar to where Snelgrove developed his system. When I hear that people have problems with it I wonder if they have veered off in some important detail from his directions. I usually do not wait till swarming sirens are sounding, while some others seem to tease this angle deliberately

    I set three colonies up this afternoon and did do one by the method II (queen in top box) because the bees were just starting to build some suspicious constructions on frame bottoms. No eggs even, in any of them though. I just do not want to risk them swarming and definitely do not want to unstack the boxes to keep checking. I did hedge my bets and checked regularly my first season using the division boards in his method one but found it not necessary.

    No doubt I am somewhat limiting the ultimate production of the colony. I had my kick at three deep colonies and found that too much work for this old fellow

    By not utilizing the diversion doors capabilities I think a person is discarding one of the main powers of the Snelgrove board.
    Frank

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