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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have told some people that I would do a cut out on a large hive in a storage building on Monday morning. The hive is between studs that are spaced @ 24" and the propolis squeezing out of the siding is about 6 ' tall. The owners say the hive has been there for at least 5 years. The weather has changed and it will probably be a little cool on Monday morning. I think it will be around 50 degrees when starting out. My question is how can I keep the brood warm while vacuuming off the bees and transferring the comb to the hive? I had a thought of putting a heating pad under the box but I do not know if that will be sufficient. Any suggestions?
 

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I did a cutout a few weeks ago when it was probably 53 degrees. It wasn't ideal and I was worried because there weren't a ton of bees. All the brood seemed to survive though.
 

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why not cut the comb with bees and all and place in frames that way, S few will head for the hills but many will stay with the brood comb.
 

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or vac a bunch up and then shake them into the box with the brood. or brush a bunch into a cardboard box lid like JP beeman does and shake a bunch in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I just was not sure how long it would take me to get the comb into the frames. I have never done that before....Just swarms and trapouts. I have a vacuum the same size as a 10 frame hive with a slider door on the bottom. I could vacuum the bees then cut the comb and then set the vac on top of the hive and just dump them in as I go I suppose. I may be over analyzing...Just trying to get the most out of it that I can.
 

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In my experience, I try to isolate the brood area by removing all the honey and pollen comb first. Some I put in the hive to give the bees a sense of home. Then I start working the brood area always looking for the queen, but transferring the brood comb with the nurse bees intact. The nurse bees hang pretty tight to the brood comb and will keep doing their nursing through the transfer. If I vacuum, it's at the end when I have a hive set up to dump them into. But my primary goal is to get the queen in a clip and in the hive. Removing all the other comb first keeps the brood warm and systematically reduces the area for the queen to hide. She is generally with the brood. But if you get to the end of a cutout and still haven't found the queen, leave one comb there and then vacuum around toward that comb. Many times I have captured the missing queen on that last comb, like in a cutout this am from a popup camper trailer. But once you have the queen in a clip, all the bees will join her in the hive at sunset, reducing the need to vacuum and kill some bees.
 
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