Looking for some collective knowledge here as this is my first foray into doing splits.
So, the story so far. I'm doing some OTS splits.
On the 10th of March I removed the queen and made new colony with her and 4 frames. Its going gangbusters and ready to add another box.
On the 17th of March, we went back in the hive and made splits of all of the queen cells we found. I made 5 splits with 3-4 frames in each into nuc boxes. They all look good as far as traffic coming in and out. I am hesitant to disturb them and haven't been in the boxes since I closed them up on the 17th. Ideally the queen was ready for her mating flights last weekend, which was sunny and 70 here in the bay area. 3 good days for mating flights, then it rained all week, and forecasted to rain into Saturday.
I plan on going into the splits (Nucs) this Sunday to determine if I have queens and add another frame or two for them.
- If I find any of the queens, should I mark them this weekend? Are they past their mating flights window, or might they still head out for another rendezvous? Does a dot of paint inhibit her flying ability?
- Is it too early to move them into another yard? Should I leave them alone for another week?
- If the queen is out while I'm in the hive with a smoker, will she come back into the hive while I'm there? Will I drive her out with a smoker?
- What should I anticipate seeing inside the nucs? I think too soon for capped brood, but possibly eggs and larvae? All the capped brood from the original split should be opened up, right? (It'l be 4 weeks since the old queen was in there)
- When is a good time to treat with Oxalic Acid dribble?
Thanks for any insight.
Phil in Fremont.