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Discussion Starter #1
This is my third year beekeeping. I have had one hive in particular that has struggled since I got it. As far as I know, this is the original queen still (but not marked). I decided last week to remove her and let them re-queen themselves. She had maybe two first-sized clusters of brood (uncapped). I was afraid that might not be enough, so I added (4) frames from another healthy hive, using the newspaper combine method. In my excitement and haste though, I think I may have only added (4) frames of bees and honey (no brood). I did this 5 days ago. I went in yesterday evening and saw no queen cells. So I'm thinking I need to add more frames of YOUNG BROOD from another healthy hive that I have. What would be the best method for that at this stage? How many frames should I add? Is one frame enough? Should I shake the nurse bees off of it first? Should I do the newspaper combine again? Should I just plop the new brood in the bottom dead center and hope they mingle well? Should I spray with sugar water to help that situation?
Any advice would be greatly appreciated. thanks!
Justin
 

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What I would do is take one frame of brood, making sure it has very young brood and hopefully some eggs, leave all the nurse bees with the frame of brood and install it in your intended hive. The nurse bees will continue to tend the eggs and larvae. In my experience your bees in the original hive seem to readily except the nurse bees and you need not do any kind of combine.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
In my experience your bees in the original hive seem to readily except the nurse bees and you need not do any kind of combine.
Thank you sir! Just to clarify....Do you think they will readily accept them because they've been queenless for almost a week...or is it just that bees in their nurse stage are less threatening?
 

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Thank you sir! Just to clarify....Do you think they will readily accept them because they've been queenless for almost a week...or is it just that bees in their nurse stage are less threatening?
I have limited experience also, but I have never had any trouble with bees attacking added nurse bees when adding a frame complete with the nurse bees. I think they are so concerned with making sure the brood is protected that they are grateful for the nurse bees, plus I don't think they see nurse bees as a threat.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I have limited experience also, but I have never had any trouble with bees attacking added nurse bees when adding a frame complete with the nurse bees. I think they are so concerned with making sure the brood is protected that they are grateful for the nurse bees, plus I don't think they see nurse bees as a threat.
Thank you so much for your 2 cents Bill! I really do appreciate it!
 

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Bill and JustFed,

Thank you for your dialog re: acceptance by bees to dropping a frame of brood and nurse bees into a hive.

I have read in several places on Beesource of the non-reaction of bees to a frame of nurse bees and brood.

JustFed, if you are going to do what you and Bill discussed, we struggling wannabeeks would appreciate a follow-up report on how well that frame introduction went, if you please.
 

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Just be very careful that the frame you move doesn't have your queen on it. Very good chance she would be killed if you accidentaly move her, then you'll have two queeness hives.

About 4 days after you move the frame over you can check it for queen cells. If there are none, move another frame over. If there are, leave it alone for at least three weeks and then check for eggs/larvae.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Just make sure you didn't accidentally grab the queen from the other hive. If you did, there would be queen cells in the hive you got the frames from.
Merince, we have 75 degrees and sunny here in Georgia tomorrow, so I will be moving one or two frames of brood/nurse bees tomorrow. My guess is that it might be 5 to 7 days before I go back in after that to check for queen cells. When I do, I'll be sure to update this thread afterwards.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks bison and merince...I'll make sure I locate the queen before I pull the frame of brood. I appreciate the reminder!
 

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Thank you sir! Just to clarify....Do you think they will readily accept them because they've been queenless for almost a week...or is it just that bees in their nurse stage are less threatening?
We are at 68 degrees here today so I decided to check on a very weak hive that I have. Although they are very weak, they still have a queen. There is no brood in the hive and I believe the queen isn't laying because there isn't enough bees to cover the brood. I just now finished pulling a frame of capped brood complete with nurse bees from another hive and adding it to this weak hive. I probably should have added another frame, but I didn't want to take to much away from the donor hive. The brood I added was mostly all capped, because the hive has a queen and I'm not interested in making queen cells I'm just trying to increase their numbers. I removed an empty frame and just dropped the frame of brood and nurse bees in the now empty space. It didn't seem to disturb any of the resident bees at all. I'm sure the bees will accept the nurse bees but if they don't I will let you all know, here.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I really did not want to give an update to this thread, but because I said I would, and to keep good historical records for myself, here is what happened: The reason why I saw no queen cells in the hive where I killed the queen, was not necessarily due to lack of young brood...it was more due the fact that I accidentally stole the queen out of the hive that I was pulling from. I realized this when I went to pull another frame of brood and saw queen cells in there, but no queen. Still not sure how I did it, as I KNOW I saw her before I started pulling the frames, but I guess she was faster than I gave her credit! Either way, all is well now. Both hives have laying queens and all is good until the next catastrophe I inadvertently induce.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
No...to recap:
Hive #1 was healthy (actually, they were getting ready to swarm but I didn't realize it!)
Hive #2 had an old queen that was barely laying.
I killed the old queen, and after two days, pulled (4) frames from my healthy hive to ensure the weak hive would have enough brood to make another queen. I didn't realize though that I had accidentally moved the queen over. It all worked out though, since hive #1 had a couple of swarm cells that I neglected to see, when I stole their queen, they had another queen ready a week later and the swarm never happened. She is now mated and laying fine.
 

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since hive #1 had a couple of swarm cells that I neglected to see, when I stole their queen,
Most likely supercedure cells not swarm cells. Hive #2 could still be in trouble if the old queen is shooting blanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
(Hmmm....not sure where I lost you...but my apologies!)
All is good now:
Hive #2 has the great queen that I accidentally took from hive#1....and hive#1 is now operating on full power with a queen that they were already making before I accidentally took their queen. (I basically prevented a swarm). Both queens are laying like crazy now. The end result is the same, it was just more by fluke than intentional good work on my part...but I'll take "lucky"! :)
 
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