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One troublesome hive

718 Views 3 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  elmer_fud
Hello All,
First year beekeeper here. I have two hives. One is great and easy to deal with. The other i cant stop from swarming. A local guy I have been using as a mentor says he has never seen anything like it. He has 8 hives and 9 years of experience.
So here is the dirt. Im running double deep brood nests, 10 frame. The hive has 20 frames of drawn comb and was started this April from a 5 frame nuc. They swarmed first by may. They had a deep with 8 frames of drawn comb and a second deep that was just foundation. It takes this hive about 3-4 weeks until they have a laying queen again. With in days of a laying queen there are 10-20 swarm queen cups. within days of queen cups they are have eggs in the cups. I was in this have every week pulling out 15-20 cups and or early cells a week. eventually I missed one and stopped tearing down the others for fear of only having one queen emerge. This process has happened over and over. 3 times this season. and they are working on #4. They backfill like crazy when they are queenless and stop building comb. Thank god for the other hive as it builds fast. several frames have gone from the good hive to the troubled hive.

In any case, this hive had no laying queen two Fridays ago. last Wednesday she was laying and i tore down 9 cups, 4 of which had eggs. I have no doubt i will pull down many more tonight.

Dont know what to do. My mentor thinks it could be that this hive just wants to swarm weather they have room or not. He suggested i could split them but would run the risk of two trouble hives and at this point its very possible neither would survive winter.

Any advice at this point will be helpful.
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Do post your location.
Otherwise, the talks are mostly unproductive.
Chester county PA. 30 miles N/W of Philadelphia
I would be inclined to re queen the hive with a store bot queen to get rid of the genetics that keep wanting to swarm.

What breed of bees are they?
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