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I did a split yesterday and after the work sat for an hour and watched. i\I saw a lot leaving, some leaving and flying right into original have and only saw 5 returning. Today I didn't see but one returning. Is this a bad sign and if so should I put the frames back as one?
 

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the nurse bees will stay with the brood. any of the foragers that you moved in the split may return to the original hive. from what i have seen posted here part of the trick is to get a lot of nurse bees for the split from the original hive. they stay and take care of the brood until they become foragers themselves. then they leave to forage and will return to the split.
 

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Make sure you have plenty of nurse bees in your split and feed the heck out of them until they get established and have a queen. Splits usually take right off and build pretty fast.
 

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How close is the split to the original hive?
about 4'

the nurse bees will stay with the brood. any of the foragers that you moved in the split may return to the original hive. from what i have seen posted here part of the trick is to get a lot of nurse bees for the split from the original hive. they stay and take care of the brood until they become foragers themselves. then they leave to forage and will return to the split.
So I'm guessing as long as there are enough nurse bees to keep the brood warm until they hatch I should be ok. What will happen if their arn't enough and the brood die from being to cold?

Make sure you have plenty of nurse bees in your split and feed the heck out of them until they get established and have a queen. Slits usually take right off and build pretty fast.
Sounds easy but my bees don't have nurse uniforms! I just left the bees on the frames that I transferred assuming the brood frames would have the nurses with them.
 

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the idea is to do the split during the day when the foragers are out doing there thing (warm temps, pollen and nectar are around). this way it is mostly the nurse bees left in the hive. if you need to you could always add another frame of bees and brood to boost the numbers in the split.
 

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Sounds easy but my bees don't have nurse uniforms! I just left the bees on the frames that I transferred assuming the brood frames would have the nurses with them. Quote;
If you do like Colby said, you will wind up with mostly nurse bees. If you don't feel you have enough bees in your split, you can also take a frame of brood from a strong hive and shake those bees off into your new split and then put your shook frame back in its original hive. Other bees from the hive will immediately cover the brood once it is placed back into the hive.
 

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in my (limited) experience doing splits I've found that the best thing is usually to chill out and wait a month before you start to worry. Then wait another week or two. As long as you transferred over enough nurse bees (as noted before - usually I shake an extra frame or so of them into a spllt) and a frame with eggs or young larvae plus enough stores (honey/pollen), they'll generally take care of themselves awfully well. I get impatient and want to peek at what's going on… but have trashed queen cells in doing so. Also even after the new queen hatches she's often hard to spot as she's smaller than when mature and may be out on mating flights. Per Michael Bush's "bee math", a queen should be laying around 4 weeks from when you do the split, so you'll see eggs or brood around 5-6 weeks out. Be patient.

Then remember that it will take a while for new bees to hatch and mature, meanwhile the initial bees will be dying off. Feeding is thus a good thing, and as mentioned above you can put another frame of capped brood in at some point to help the population.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
in my (limited) experience doing splits I've found that the best thing is usually to chill out and wait a month before you start to worry. Then wait another week or two. As long as you transferred over enough nurse bees (as noted before - usually I shake an extra frame or so of them into a spllt) and a frame with eggs or young larvae plus enough stores (honey/pollen), they'll generally take care of themselves awfully well. I get impatient and want to peek at what's going on… but have trashed queen cells in doing so. Also even after the new queen hatches she's often hard to spot as she's smaller than when mature and may be out on mating flights. Per Michael Bush's "bee math", a queen should be laying around 4 weeks from when you do the split, so you'll see eggs or brood around 5-6 weeks out. Be patient.

Then remember that it will take a while for new bees to hatch and mature, meanwhile the initial bees will be dying off. Feeding is thus a good thing, and as mentioned above you can put another frame of capped brood in at some point to help the population.
It's day 21 of the split and all seems well. I made a 30 day chart so I could see at a glance what stage the new colony should be in. According to my calculations if all went well the new queen should have emerged around the beginning of April. Today should have been the day the last original eggs are hatched and the day with the largest number of worker bees foraging. The foragers should decline until the new queens babies start hatching.

What's puzzling me is the original hive which I just inspected for the first time since the split has what appear to be queen cells. The cells pupae seem to be vary large and the bees are eating them. This is only a second year hive and the queen seemed to be doing fine and I made sure she stayed in the original hive during the split. Why do you think this is happening.
 
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