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I really really hate to pinch the old queen, she has been a wonderful layer - finishing a 2nd year very strong. I am just wary of what will happen next year if she start failing, and the current trend is to reQueen.

Can I try and make a nuc with her, I have 5 or 6 good drawn frames. I tried to make a split in June and they got robbed out by the mother hive - all my fault. I would be more careful and work with a robbing screen this time.

Any suggestions?

New Bee Lady:scratch:
 

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I really really hate to pinch the old queen, she has been a wonderful layer - finishing a 2nd year very strong. I am just wary of what will happen next year if she start failing, and the current trend is to reQueen.

Can I try and make a nuc with her, I have 5 or 6 good drawn frames. I tried to make a split in June and they got robbed out by the mother hive - all my fault. I would be more careful and work with a robbing screen this time.

Any suggestions?

New Bee Lady:scratch:
You could be setting yourself up for trouble by attempting to replace your queen this late in the season. There is no guarantee that she will be accepted and if not, the colony will likely face the winter queenless. I am of the opinion (based on experience) that your hive will supersede the queen when its time. You can also raise your own replacement in the Spring if you feel the need and retain the local genetics.

If your current queen ended the year strong, why not allow her to continue through the winter?
 

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>finishing a 2nd year very strong
MB has had good queens for 3+ years

>just wary of what will happen next year if she start failing
Your bees will sense long before it is a problem and replace her, your hive could have two queen while mother daughter work together until the old queen passes away.

>Can I try and make a nuc with her
Yes there is time to make splits, I like big 4 frame splits with the queen. You will need to get them up to the size you want for wintering.

>tried to make a split in June and they got robbed out
there will be more of chance of robbing now than in June.
 

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I never replace a GOOD queen. I replace BAD queens. If you have a good queen , why would you want to risk replacing her and facing the uncertainty of acceptance and unknowns of the queen you will replace her with. What if the new queen is not a good queen. Lost time replacing your new queen.

Timely inspections of your hive will give you indications that your GOOD queen is going bad. That is when I would replace her.

To address your question, yes, you can make a split, may have to just manage it a little more closely this time of year. May need help getting through the Winter.

cchoganjr
 

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With the main flow over, now is an excellent time to requeen. Your new queen has time to settle in and have the new vigor that should reflect in the new crop of fat winter bees.

I definitely would make a nuc using the old queen. In fact, I never pinch queens but stick them in a nuc to live out the season and possibly the winter. Having her in a nuc is an insurance policy against the unlikely event your new queen should prove to be a dud. The nuc may produce some honey, possibly new comb and workers that you may use to combine if needed.

Wayne
 
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