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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am considering doing some splits that immitate a hive just swarmed. Is there a name for this or is it a common way to split?
Day 1:Seperate the supers from the brood chamber. Install a new bottom board and outer cover on the supers and keep the supers in the original hive location. catch the queen and put her in the super hive.
Move the brood chamber containing alot of nurse bees.
Night 1 : Take the supers hive and move all those bees a distance to a new box with no drawn comb. The old Queen and foragers.
For the brood chamber same night : Move it back to the original hive location .
A day or 2 later Kill any queen cells that were made and install a virgin or mated queen the next day.
What would happen?
Is there an easier way already to mass produce comb and obtain a split?
Maybe even make acceptance of a virgin easier?
 

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The name you're looking for is an "Artificial Swarm". However, you may way to adjust your method a bit.

If you remove all the brood and let the foragers go back into the "super" you now have a box FULL of flying foragers. When you move that hive again, queen or not, they will all fly back to the original location leaving your box empty - as that's what foragers do, fly. And since they know where home is, that's where they'll go.

You'll also have a box full of the oldest bees in the colony - as foraging is the last stage of life for a worker bee. Even if you move the colony some distance away you'll have to deal with that issue. Natural swarms have bees of all ages, not just the oldest.

To be more successful I'd use a tested and proven method of removing frames of brood, nurse bees, and resources into a new colony and introduce your new queens. When dealing with virgin queens you don't have to deal with the acceptance issues of a mated queen. I move virgin queens into 2 hour old splits all the time without issue. However, I do prefer to plan ahead by moving capped brood above an excluder and allowing some time to pass so any eggs in the brood are too old to raise new queens. I then take the brood frames now covered in nurse bees and emerging brood into splits and introduce a virgin queen.

Even with one hive, you could move some of the brood above an excluder for 10 days with the queen left below. After 10 days remove all the brood above the excluder and place that into multiple or one new colony in a new location. The nurse bees in there wouldn't have yet flown so they accept the new location as well as any new queen you add. IMO that's the fastest and safest way to secure genetics of your choice. It also doesn't really slow down the original colony this early in the year so you can continue using the colony as a brood builder if you wish.

I did this a couple weeks and and as soon as my cells were ready I was able to make up 32 splits into queen castles. I had a 100% virgin queen acceptance rate and now we're just waiting for them to mate. Temps coming in the low 70s so fingers crossed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The name you're looking for is an "Artificial Swarm". However, you may way to adjust your method a bit.

If you remove all the brood and let the foragers go back into the "super" you now have a box FULL of flying foragers. When you move that hive again, queen or not, they will all fly back to the original location leaving your box empty - as that's what foragers do, fly. And since they know where home is, that's where they'll go.

You'll also have a box full of the oldest bees in the colony - as foraging is the last stage of life for a worker bee. Even if you move the colony some distance away you'll have to deal with that issue. Natural swarms have bees of all ages, not just the oldest.

To be more successful I'd use a tested and proven method of removing frames of brood, nurse bees, and resources into a new colony and introduce your new queens. When dealing with virgin queens you don't have to deal with the acceptance issues of a mated queen. I move virgin queens into 2 hour old splits all the time without issue. However, I do prefer to plan ahead by moving capped brood above an excluder and allowing some time to pass so any eggs in the brood are too old to raise new queens. I then take the brood frames now covered in nurse bees and emerging brood into splits and introduce a virgin queen.

Even with one hive, you could move some of the brood above an excluder for 10 days with the queen left below. After 10 days remove all the brood above the excluder and place that into multiple or one new colony in a new location. The nurse bees in there wouldn't have yet flown so they accept the new location as well as any new queen you add. IMO that's the fastest and safest way to secure genetics of your choice. It also doesn't really slow down the original colony this early in the year so you can continue using the colony as a brood builder if you wish.

I did this a couple weeks and and as soon as my cells were ready I was able to make up 32 splits into queen castles. I had a 100% virgin queen acceptance rate and now we're just waiting for them to mate. Temps coming in the low 70s so fingers crossed.
I'm going to go buy some excluders!
I like that .
And also, I have 6 virgin queens coming in april or may. Its kinda hard to find any info on introducing virgin queens to hives. So is it pretty much if a colony is queenless they accept a virgin easier?
 

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A virgin queen is generally treated like a nurse bee or even a drone. They are just kind of "there" to be fed and tended to without much thought. They aren't yet mated, laying, and full of pheromones' to indicate otherwise.

The method I mentioned utilizes almost entirely nurse bees. On top of the virgin queen mostly being ignored, nurse bees are also incredibly friendly to anything new and will accept even mated queens much easier than older bees. That's the beauty of my mentioned method, it keeps all the older bees with the original queen and keeps her working while putting the nurse bees to work in producing more hives due to their docile and accepting nature.

If I do a split and have virgin ready to go in immediately I'll mix up some diy "honey bee healthy" and spray that on top of the hive before I let the virgin go. It's probably not necessary but does give me that feeling of "I did something extra". The theory is they are distracted by the syrup, cleaning it up, and the essential oils mask any pheremones that may hinder acceptance. If I weren't utilizing nurse bees I'd likely use a standard jzbz queen cage with a marshmallow so she's not released immediately, but fast enough to get onto her fattened up on onto her mating flights.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
A virgin queen is generally treated like a nurse bee or even a drone. They are just kind of "there" to be fed and tended to without much thought. They aren't yet mated, laying, and full of pheromones' to indicate otherwise.

The method I mentioned utilizes almost entirely nurse bees. On top of the virgin queen mostly being ignored, nurse bees are also incredibly friendly to anything new and will accept even mated queens much easier than older bees. That's the beauty of my mentioned method, it keeps all the older bees with the original queen and keeps her working while putting the nurse bees to work in producing more hives due to their docile and accepting nature.

If I do a split and have virgin ready to go in immediately I'll mix up some diy "honey bee healthy" and spray that on top of the hive before I let the virgin go. It's probably not necessary but does give me that feeling of "I did something extra". The theory is they are distracted by the syrup, cleaning it up, and the essential oils mask any pheremones that may hinder acceptance. If I weren't utilizing nurse bees I'd likely use a standard jzbz queen cage with a marshmallow so she's not released immediately, but fast enough to get onto her fattened up on onto her mating flights.
Thank you! That sounds much easier than what I was thinking.
 

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Awesome. Just about exactly what I do, but I put the brood above a queen excluder for 10 days so there aren't any eggs that can be used to make queens. Then, take the brood / nurse bees and split it out into multiple queen castles for cells/virgins.

I do the same thing for my cell builder/finisher but shake in a bunch more nurse bees. Once I tear down a cell builder they can fill out new frames in about a week! It's amazing!

I'm not sure you mentioned what you did with the boxes of brood? I read the auto captions as to not wake anyone up so may have missed it.
 

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I’ve used a cut-down split to achieve similar aims. Also for brood-break, swarm prevention, honey/comb production and to get a good quality young Queen raised. It sounds confusing at first. At first I used to keep an index card in my pocket with a drawing of what goes where. Now it is one of the best techniques I’ve learned. Good description here:
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Have yall ever felt bad being masters at manipulating things? LOL
Dang those are very good ways to acheive end results Big Time!
Thats very good information. I'm marking this page for reference. Or following ???
 
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