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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I did a site search for answers, and googled around a bit. Just looking for some experience to weigh in.

I live in Maryland. It's hot right now (100 degrees F and humid). I have 2 hives and 1 nuc. I'm running all mediums, and one piece plastic frames throughout - other than my nuc, which is a 5 frame deep with one piece plastic frames. 2 hives are a few feet apart on a shared stand. The nuc is 100 feet away. All 3 have laying queens.

Primary objective: get the bees out of my nuc so I can have it as a swarm trap.
Secondary objective: boost the "slower" colony.
Tertiary objective: move the nuc worth of bees away from my house (long story on this poor placement. short: never wanted a 3rd colony)

I recognize there are several ways to achieve my primary objective of evicting the bees from the nuc, but I'd like to keep them without losing the swarm trap option. What I'm envisioning is putting the nuc on top of the slower colony (above a queen excluder), using the newspaper method, and cutting some ply wood to cover the rest of the top of the receiving colony. After they've "become one," I'll simply remove the nuc, and shake the bees back into the newly expanded colony. And move the nuc away to be used as a trap. I don't want to buy a deep, or any more deep frames.

The biggest questions I have are:
1. What about the nuc queen? Just slay her, or let her fight it out with the other queen?
(maybe I'll let the local bee association know I've got a freebee queen)
2. Is there an easier or better way?

Am I overthinking this? What are your thoughts? Ever done this with mismatched hardware?
 

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OR Use a frame of brood from your strong colony to help the "slower" one, keep the nuc overwinter and sell it in the spring.
Transfer the 5 frames into cardboard nuc box. They're like $7.00.

A true overwintered nuc with a laying queen can sell for $175.00. Especially early in the season.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
A true overwintered nuc with a laying queen can sell for $175.00. Especially early in the season.
I do like the sound of $175.
Also it'd be nice to have a nuc to get started with next year (assuming all my bees are going to die slow, cold, miserable deaths this winter).

But that still leaves me with 3 problems:
1. The nuc is in a bad spot in my yard and I need to move it. I guess I can just pick it up one night and plop it between my 2 other hives.
2. I still don't have a swarm trap. I've read that having a vacant nuc box with drawn comb is a good spot to catch a swarm.
3. That honey smells real good, and I want to eat it.

Maybe I should just shut up and buy another nuc box, transfer a couple frames into the new one, move them both to my bee yard. Then when the comb is drawn in both, I can combine nucs and have my bee trap, and a buzzing overwinter nuc attempt.

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If this becomes too expensive or time consuming in my mind I'm probably going to go out there and just shake all the bees into the slow hive, and have my trap. Is the shake out method not good?
 

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Move the nuc to where you need to and sell it. Buy two medium boxes and tops/bottoms with the money for a nuc and a swarm trap. Mixing sizes is a commitment and a chore, believe you me.
 

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Stack two mediums. Put 5 medium frames in the bottom box and top box. Put the 5 deep frames in the top box after it is stacked.

Eventually will draw extra comb on the bottom of the frames, but in the bottom box it is rarely a problem.

Option 2: shake the bees off and cut off the bottom of the all plastic frames with a circular saw.
 

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Swarm trap= 15 bucks
Nuc= 150 bucks
It makes no sense to me to whack a nucleus colony just for the box.
I'd use the nuc to boost the other colony as needed. And keep it- you may need the resources or the queen in the future.
Just buy another box for a trap. Swap it with an old box if you want to. Could be a shoe box for all they care.
Still not clear though... If you want less colonies, why do you want a swarm trap?
 
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