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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a really strong overwintered hive that I've made 3 small splits (3 frames) from, and letting them raise there own queen.

Is there any way to use the old nucs to enhance further nuc production. I'd like to have 6 hives going into winter. I'm also producing some queens for some friends.


Thanks,

Scott R.
http://scottriley-bees-and-oysters.blogspot.com/
 

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What step by step method are you using to do these splits and queen rearing?

I also have a third year hive with the original queen that is outperforming all my other hives. I want to produce off her eggs/brood.

Thanks in advance.

Soapy
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I just take one frame of eggs, one of brood, and one of honey/pollen and place this in a nuc. I sometimes use a division board feeder in the split. I just place the nuc off to the side and let them raise their own. I will add a frame of capped brood if I notice their numbers dwindling before the queen starts laying.
 

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Adding a mated queen instead of them raising their own will allow you to split them again faster.

If you really want to allow them to raise their own queens, put the laying queen in a 5 frame nuc with 5 frames of brood. They will make tons of swarm cells. Split 5 ways, and the swarm cell queens will be up and laying quickly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I'm trying to keep my costs down by not ordering queens. Will they be likely to swarm with this method? Or do you just remove the queen cells before they do this? What should you do with the queen after you've divided up the frames?

I was hoping to keep the queen I have in the strong hive, so I can pull frames of brood to strengthen other hives.

Could you possibly do a cutout of some cells (I'm thinking a small circle cookie cutter maybe) and then placing them in a frame (with circles cutout) and put that in a queenless nuc? I'd wait for them to make the queen cells, and then transfer them to another nuc. Maybe I could put the cut-out of cells in a wooden frame so it would be easier to move, and damage the queen cell less.
 

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Do you want to pay on the front end or on the back end?

Pay for queens now, or pay for lack of production by making the bees make their own queens.

Yes, you run a risk of the bees swarming by limiting space and inducing them to swarm. With added risk comes potential rewards. With the added risk comes the potential reward of being able to split more ways.

I was hoping to keep the queen I have in the strong hive, so I can pull frames of brood to strengthen other hives.

Multiple mated laying queens will produce a lot more brood than one queen can.

Could you possibly do a cutout of some cells (I'm thinking a small circle cookie cutter maybe) and then placing them in a frame (with circles cutout) and put that in a queenless nuc? I'd wait for them to make the queen cells, and then transfer them to another nuc. Maybe I could put the cut-out of cells in a wooden frame so it would be easier to move, and damage the queen cell less.

The two most difficult things in beekeeping are producing comb honey and raising queens.

Anything is possible. Sure sounds like a lot of hard work to me. Your time might be better spent picking up pop cans for recycling money, and buying mated queens.

Yes, you can make a split and let the bees raise their own queen. However, this comes at the cost that you are unlikely to be able to split them again and have the splits be strong enough to overwinter. Plan on the bees needing about 3 months after a walkaway split to build up enough strength to split again. Plan on being able to split again in 5 weeks if you add a mated queen.
 

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Those are some pretty expensive queens at $27 plus shipping for someone with very little experience, only 1 hive and needing to ask basic queen rearing questions here.
 

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I would have taken the queen and a couple of frames of bees to a nuc box. Let the strong hive make queen cells. Then just before they start to hatch take each frame with cells and put it with two more frames of bees/brood in nuc boxes. If you need more nucs then you have frames with cells, just cut some off to put in the other nucs. If you have 18 frames of bees you can get 6 nucs and the queens will be much better having been raised in a strong hive rather than a little nuc with few bees and resources.
 
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