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Discussion Starter #1
hi all
well, it's time for the first split, i have a new queen in my hot little hand and will be doing the split this evening. i plan on leaving the split alone for 12-24 hrs before introducing the new queen but since i have trouble finding the queen in the original hive ( she a queen left from last years swarm and pretty productive) what will be the easiest way to tell which hive she is when i am done, i would hate to pick incorrectly and introduce my new queen into the wrong hive if i accidently carry the original queen into the new hive. :scratch:
i have searched for an answer in the archieves and not really found an answer, and since queen locating is not my strong suit i thought i had better be sure so as not to have a real mess on my hands and get the new queen killed.

thanks in advance all
beebiker
 

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I need more info b4 answering.
What is configuration of the hive now, how many boxes and what size, how populous, is there good stores, etc. Is there a flow on now.
 

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1. Go frame by frame, over and over again, until you see the queen. Check all the corners, cracks, gaps, every bee if need be.

2. If 1 doesn't work, split them into two boxes and wait three days. After three days all the old eggs should hatch. Open both hives and look for eggs, the one who doesn't have eggs needs the queen.

Of course, there are more thorough answers, taking into consideration alot more factors, but the above two should help you if all you want to do is find the queen.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
good morning guys
well to answer the questions:
- the configuration of the hive to be split from is a square sided tbh with aprox. 22 top bars. comb at present covers all but 3 of the bars with half being brood nest. hive is jammed with bees from front to back but i am seeing open cells in the brood nest area. their are stores available but it is not "packed in " per say.
we do have a good alphalpha bloom going right now so with the volume of bees in the hive it seemed like the perfect time.
going frame by frame with this volume of bees it to say the least a daunting task and from my past experience of never finding the queen yet i don't hold out much hope of seeing her. my other consideration is that the temps right now are very warm and the comb is quite soft. i am putting the comb into regular deep frames for the split into a regular langstroth hive.
i went ahead and did the split last night pulling nearly full frames of honey and brood from the rear of the brood nest hoping the queen would be at the front of the hive, used my little bee vac to collect about 3 1/2 lbs of bees from the middle of the hive and after plugging the entrance let them set over night. this morning i took the hive out to the new location opened it up and laid the queen and her attendunce on top of the reames to observe their reaction. they didn't seem all that interested in her and didn,t look like they were trying to ball her so i pulled the plastic cap over the candy and placed her between the frames to be released. i will go back out and see if she survived the day tonight after work. hope i did ok....
bee biker
 

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Discussion Starter #6
agreed, but with darkness coming on very quickly it was turning into a do or die situation as it was WAY dark out there :eek: unfortunetly i could not pull the pickup close and shine the headlights on the hive for light.
my inability to find the queen after exhaustive searching for last two years is what prompted the question, i was hoping someone could have told me of some exhibited behavior of a recently split hive without a queen would indicate which hive she was in. this morning the split off hive was roaring and i was hoping that would be an indicator, but i am still learning here so i wasn't sure.

beebiker
 

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I've found that a queenless hive is often more defensive and agitated than one with a queen, but this usually isn't enough to go off of for sure.

If you are having difficulty finding the queen for the past two years, might I suggest finding a local mentor to guide you through it. He can come out and help you find the queen, and possibly help you mark her so you can find her in the future.

Of course, if it isn't you then it's her. Some breeds (for instance, Russian) tend to run around and hide (at least my observation). Because of that, I don't like to keep Russians. I like to be able to find the queen if I have to (which I only do for splits). I would consider trying a calmer set of genetics if you need to requeen. Unless you really like your genetics despite the "hide" gene.
 

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An unusual split to say the least. Finding the queen many times is mostly for the beek and not so much for the health of the colony. However, doing a split is one of those times when finding the queen is really required. Chances are that your technique (probably better than 50%) may have worked, but you put the bees (and yourself) through too much stress. I'd keep an eye on that split to make sure it is not too weak. Your technique probably didn't get a lot of young bees, nor does it sound like you took brood - both important in a split. Further, I might go back and cap the queen cage until I saw eggs in either part. Find a local mentor and get help with locating queens. Maybe he can mark your queens.
 

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thanks special
i did not notice any more defensiveness from either the old hive or the new but i suspect that may be because they were queenless in one or the other for just a short period of time. ( they are Italians by the way)
it is frustrating because i can find the queen in my other hives fairly well, or if i cannot, my better half can. the tb queen just seems overly shy or is a master of disguise, or i am simply not seeing her because i need to handle the frames for the tbh differently. in any event, when i peek in this evening i should have my answer, if they are balling the cage then the queen was transfered i would think.

beebiker
 

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Discussion Starter #10
just a quick update---
well seems it was successful, the girls were catering to her and did not seem aggressive or agitated at all, in fact many were flying foraging on the alphalpha when i arrived.
I peeked inside at her and they were covering her cage and trying to feed those inside, also had a bunch covering all the brood so i think i have enough nurse bees in the bunch. note to myself is never try a split in the middle of the week, wait till i have a day off so as not to be rushed :no::pinch:

thanks for the input guys
beebiker
 
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