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I bought a "survivor stock" NUC last year from Old Sol Apiaries in Oregon. They have overwintered in my yard so far, and seem to be strong although I have not done a full inspection yet. Do I need to split the hive this year?
 

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Need, maybe not, should yes. One hive is not a good plan.
Look at relatively low impact splits; veritcal, follower board, flyback, split and return with queen excluder.

Get your inspection done before worrying about the next step, that is your next step.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The weather looks warm and dry enough for me to inspect them tomorrow. I'll get an idea of stores, brood, eggs then. Thanks for the help.
 

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I bought a "survivor stock" NUC last year from Old Sol Apiaries in Oregon. They have overwintered in my yard so far, and seem to be strong although I have not done a full inspection yet. Do I need to split the hive this year?
I would even say - must (since you have gotten into the "survivor stock" program - as opposed to getting some generic Italian bees just to harvest your own honey right away).
:)

A typical idea behind the acquiring "survivor stock" is to build your own "survivor" population and never again buy bees.
I would for sure go for increase factor of x3 (or even more risky x4) this year.
If you don't go for an increase, you will likely just lose your bees over time and be back to the point zero again.
 

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Better to split rather than losing to a swarm. Increase your colony count and buy a bit of honey if you have to!
 

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I have learned that even if you want to remain small, it is a must to have at least 2 hives, 3 being optimal. As stated above, a good plan is to do your inspection and inventory what you have for brood, what stages they are in and what stores are available. Then have a cup of coffee or adult beverage and determine how many splits you should do, when you should do it and how much additional woodenware you might need. J
 
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