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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone,

I have a hive started from a package that's doing really well and I'm planning to split them in 2 weeks with a purchased queen. I don't care about honey this year, just would like to go into winter with two hives. If they don't build up well I'll combine them in the fall and keep the best queen.

The current hive is all Italian I think. The queen actually looks Cordovan to me and of course that is just Italian. The new queen will most likely be Carniolan. I know the Italians are known for robbing, and my new hive will be only a couple feet from the existing (can't change that). To help acceptance of the new queen I was originally going to put the new queen into a new medium at the new location with 3-4 frames of brood/honey and nurse bees and then reduce the entrance. This way the field bees who might give the new queen a harder time would just go back to the queen they know in the existing hive. I'm worried that even with an entrance reducer though that the new hive might get robbed by the existing Italian hive. So this just popped into my head. The existing hive has almost 16 medium frames (I'm using all mediums) completely drawn, I've put on a third box, and they'll have two weeks to work on that. What if I put a lot more frames with the new hive than just 3-4 to make them essentially the stronger hive, or almost equal at least, while keeping the Italian queen and that hive in the same location, so the field bees return there. Any thoughts on bettering the new hives chances of not being robbed in that way. Am I dooming both hives to not build enough if I try that? I'm in PA and we get cold winters, so if I had to recombine I'd probably want to keep the new Carniolan queen if all other things are equal.

Thanks everyone.
 

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do a search here at the top of the page for "robber screen" works well. "equal" is a judgement call, unless you wanna count'em :) . my italian mutts are thieves too!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the robber screen thing, haven't seen one of those before, just entrance reducers. Can they be used as an over-winter mouse guard or wouldn't you do that? Just hate to have/make more pieces of this and that than I really need :) I have entrance reducers, but would probably just get rid of them if I can use the robber screen over the winter and I have it anyway.

I know what you mean about being equal, no counting here :rolleyes: ...but the usual 3-4 frame split is quite a bit different than a 7-8 frame split. Just looking for thoughts on a direction there.

Thanks again.
 
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