Okay to Split before Queen Cells?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    79

    Default Okay to Split before Queen Cells?

    Hi,

    I have a TBH that is full of bees right now. As of a couple of days ago I didn't see any queen cells, but there were queen cups, and lots of drones, and so I'm assuming they're getting ready to swarm. Is there any problem with me just taking the queen and splitting the hive now? Or do I have to wait for a certain point? In past years I've had some success with keeping my hives from swarming, but not enough to keep my neighbors happy (I live in an urban area), so I'd really like to do my best to eliminate swarms this year. Thanks!

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    53,748

    Default Re: Okay to Split before Queen Cells?

    Queen cups are irrelevant to anything. You can do a split anytime you have a strong hive and drones flying.

    http://bushfarms.com/beessplits.htm
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 42y 40h 39yTF

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    79

    Default Re: Okay to Split before Queen Cells?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    Queen cups are irrelevant to anything. You can do a split anytime you have a strong hive and drones flying.

    http://bushfarms.com/beessplits.htm
    Thanks for the response and the info. Sounds great. I'll go ahead and make my split this morning.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    79

    Default

    Sorry, have a couple other questions now that I’ve been thinking about it. The link you provided said to move the queen and then move uncapped brood. My gut would tell me to move the capped brood because then they would emerge sooner, and therefore provide more bees to the new hive. Why does it recommend moving uncapped brood?
    My other question is, I know I am not supposed to disturb the original hive for a month so it can raise a new queen, but the reason I was splitting it was to try and prevent a swarm. If I can’t check it for a month, how can I monitor it to make sure the swarm urge has passed?
    Thanks!

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