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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have two hives. The smaller one pulled thru the winter (it was a nuc last year that then superceded in the fall so they were weak) and have been ramping up all spring. They went from barely a medium box to three mediums!
Super calm, great hive, and now they have swarm cells. I think the queen is still there cause I saw lots of very young larvae and most of the queen cells are not sealed yet (some are though).
I tossed in 5 bare, foundationless frames in the midst of the broodnest and took some of the bees and added them to splits from the other hive. That reduced the population and opened up the broodnest.

But... what about the queen cells? I could put the frames with queen cells into the other hive splits (making sure a queen hatched out) or do another split (I'm running out of equipment!).
Or what would happen if I confirm the other queen was there and get rid of the queen cells?

Thanks!!
 

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Re: Swarm preps are bunderway....

put the queen in a split and leave a couple of queen cells in the original hive and they think(usually) they have swarmed and stop trying. good luck,mike
 

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Re: Swarm preps are bunderway....

The extra space and the removal of the queen cells won't stop the swarm momentum?

So at this point, it sounds like the only real option is to get the original queen out of the hive so they think they've swarmed.

Thanks!
Kurt (who can't proofread titles!)
 

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Re: Swarm preps are bunderway....

I think KURT S is right. On april 14 I split a hive with swarm cells by moving the old queen with two frames of nurse bees and caped brood. I looked in last week and nurse bees were busy attending a queen cell so she might be out by now. I will look in if the rain ever stops. So far no swarms. both hives doing good.
 

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Re: Swarm preps are bunderway....

David,

check your math - April 14th swarm cells seen would have emerged ~max 10 days later. Could the swarm cell being attended to last week be another cycle on their way to swarm?

-BH
 

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Re: Swarm preps are bunderway....

Ok when I lifted the frame out with the queen on it the swarm cells were on the bottom and thay were ripped open and the larva fell out. This time the cells are on the top of the bottom frames. not hooked to the top ones. I never have done this before. I know one thing that hive is over flowing if not for the rain I would have a honey super on.
 

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Re: Swarm preps are bunderway....

I also did not see a live queen last week this was on May 5 I did see one that was dead half out of her cell. I might have crushed her. And no caped brood.
 

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David; the best course to follow when you find cells is to remove the old queen and a couple frames of brood/bees to another box and let the original hive raise a new queen with those cells. When cells are built the hive is in swarm mode and rarely can you stop them. Cutting the swarm cells just means that you have doomed the old hive to be queenless because the swarm is going to leave, regardless of your intervention.
 

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I'm confused.
I have read that if you remove the queen cells the swarm won't leave. But you are eventually going to miss a cell and lose the swarm. I thought comb honey producers removed queen cells during the season to keep the bees?

Also I thought the idea was to remove more of the brood and old queen?
Last year I did this (2 frames with the queen) and they still swarmed with the virgin. I had assumed I took to few bees/brood frames.

I believe until I get more experience I will just do what the book says (put a new hive body at the old site. Put queen on the frame she is on in it. Empty or foundation for other frames. Move old hive away to a new spot.)

Am I wrong?
 

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As of 5 pm today both hives doing good. Yesterday I smoked them bothe hives wall to wall bees. Added a deep to the one with the old queen and a honey super to the other one. And today thay were flying in and out of them. Oh I drill a hole in the front of both my supers and deeps for ventilation this also provids a entrance so I can see them flying in and out. Tomarrow will be 30 days. I will keep you posted. David
 
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