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Greg V - Maybe I misunderstood the concept and did the split incorrectly. I was under the impression that you move the old hive to a new location, then pull a frame of bees with the queen and place into a new hive at the old location. That is what I did and it left the new hive (in the original location) with mostly the queen and house bees, and the old hive (in a new location) with bunches of bees and no queen. Maybe I should now split the old hive to increase the chances of getting a mated queen.
Never mind (deleted my response after re-reading).

In theory this sounds OK.
In practice, you want that old hive left alone exactly as-is in its present place (just gutted off the contents).
You move the contents away, but leave the hive behind.
In fact, you can keep the old hive empty for 2-3 days (with a queen in a cage or on a single empty comb) - a very good way to stop a pending swarm.

The hive smell is a very powerful driver - if you move the old hive few feet away, you only confuse the bees (because you now caused their visual orientation to be countered by the smell orientation - it is a chaos for them - they literally can not believe their own eyes as the smell tells them their hive has moved).

With the old hive left alone in its location as-is, the fly back is really a very simple and reliable maneuver and will work every time exactly as it should.
 

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Greg V - Maybe I misunderstood the concept and did the split incorrectly. I was under the impression that you move the old hive to a new location, then pull a frame of bees with the queen and place into a new hive at the old location. That is what I did and it left the new hive (in the original location) with mostly the queen and house bees, and the old hive (in a new location) with bunches of bees and no queen. Maybe I should now split the old hive to increase the chances of getting a mated queen.
How you explain it is how I do mine. I might leave the bottom board when moving the hive cause I move by the box but can't really remember. I have never fed the old side with the queen and it worked also. I did feed the moved hive even though it did have stores in it. Opinion but I think it helps with the bees that are making a queen.

I would not split the old hive till the queen cells are at least capped cause more bees make better queens but after capped if you wanted to hedge your bet on getting a mated queen, gregs ideal has merit. I am always too lazy to do all that cause I am usually just playing around and not after maximum expansion.

Good luck with your split, I really like the fly back split cause of its simplicity. I have did one that I split too small and had to recombine when the queens did not get mated but even then, it was coming out even and so no loss. It seemed the ones I made earlier had better queen return then the ones I made late in the year and probably in a derth.

Good luck
gww
 

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..... if you wanted to hedge your bet on getting a mated queen, gregs ideal has merit. ....
gww
For me, the fly back is an excellent way to create a queen-less resource full of brood and young bees - perfect for queen raising.
Not really thinking of a single mated queen - rather several mated queens.
 

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Maybe I should now split the old hive to increase the chances of getting a mated queen.

If you have several good Q cells this is a valid plan, increases the odds of getting a good mated returned queen.
For me in Mich it is getting late,, to winter small splits ,, but this is exactly what I do in the early June time frame.

Can do this and pick the "better" queen, if both are good then re queen some poor performer or split a big hive into a couple mediums.
Do keep in mind the winter is coming :) so need be ready with stores and enough bees to make it thru.

GG
 

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For me in Mich it is getting late,, to winter small splits ,, but this is exactly what I do in the early June time frame.

Can do this and pick the "better" queen, if both are good then re queen some poor performer or split a big hive into a couple mediums.
Do keep in mind the winter is coming :) so need be ready with stores and enough bees to make it thru.

GG
GG, those splits need not be permanent and need not to go into the winter.
This time a year for us up here, mating splits are still fine (just 1-2 frame or a mini).
The OP is in GA, in fact.

Last round of mating for me was not great - queens got lost (could be the dragon flies).
Will get set for another round this weekend - because why not.
Eventually, all this fleet of little nucs I got will get dumped into few hives, around the better queens.
 

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Good morning. Just an update on my split which I did 30 days ago (first split ever, started with a package in May). I checked today and both colonies doing well. New colony has a big fat queen with a bunch of larvae and even some capped brood. Old colony building up, having drawn out 7 frames filled with bees, brood, and stores.
 
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