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I am doing a cut-out tomorrow and from what I can tell it is a larger hive. My last cut-out was a small hive, so it didn't even fill three frames in my Langstroth...

So, when you guys do a cut-out of a large hive, how much of the comb do you keep? Is there a point where the hive is big enough that you fill and stack two boxes worth of comb?

Second question: For a given box, what mix of comb do you install? Maximize brood? One frame of brood for one frame of honey/pollen?

For reference, the hive I am pulling out is between roofing rafters (24in apart) by about 5ft long (from what I could tell in the dark attic).
 

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I use medium 8 frame equipment, I fill one box with end frames of nectar/honey 2 -3 frames of capped brood about 2 frames of larva/eggs and 1-2 frames mixed pollen, nectar and brood. Out of the 4 cut outs I performed only one survived. The one I got the queen. Try and get the queen an have a better survivor rate them I have.
 

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The more comb you need/want, the more you attempt to save. I would recommend you save the brood comb before starting on any stores or empties, time is not always your friend and cut outs seem to multiply the original estimate by some significant factor. Attempting to save nectar/honey makes a huge mess even larger, might consider throwing it in buckets and feeding it back to them later.


If you're working in a San Diego attic in the middle of summer you're going to earn this cut out. Be safe first, this colony isn't worth any lesser option.
 
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