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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The hive that I talked about looks like it will make it. I looked yesterday and the hive is getting better. Finally had some of the bees get old enough to start foraging last week, the gallon of sugar water was gone and a look shows the queen some brood and a deep and super with a lot of bees.

I looked at my other hive and it had 4 full boxes of bees of 2 supers and two deeps. The bottom deep had almost no larva or brood just some open honey and pollen. The top box had some full frames of capped brood and some smaller areas of eggs and larva.

I ALSO FOUND 4 NEW CAPPED QUEEN CELLS on 3 frames on the middle of the frames and a few Halfway started queen cells on the bottom but the serious queen cells were on the frames and nothing else in both deeps. I did not see the queen but it looks like they are wanting to swarm and some new larva present.

I flipped the boxes and had the following questions:

Both queens are not laying full frames of larva and brood right now. Not sure if the one queen though alive did not get some of the poison that was brought back into the hive but I have no dead or sick bees in the hive. Both seem to have eased up on laying right now.

* With the healthy hive full of 4 boxes of bees and no queen cells at the moment should I shake bees or move some frames of brood from the strong hive over into the weaker hive to hopefully slow down the swarm urge and strengthen the one hive?

Will this help?
I prefer to keep just two hives instead of splitting the strong hive. Last year I had swarms and still gave two splits away.

What would you do? I hate to lose all those bees with a swarm but it is a hobby and not a business. I got a little over 20 gallons of honey last year.

Let me know what you think. If I do something I need to do it today as I am off to the farm to work cows and spring chores.

Thanks,
Jim
 

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Possible the queen cells are supercedure rather than swarm? The queens wont lay more eggs/brood than the bees can currently cover. They may know what they are doing. If taking brood from stronger colonies would also be a plus for oncoming swarm controls it could be good, otherwise things look like they are taking care of themselves.

That has been quite an experience.
 

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Frank has it right. Remember I said I lost queens for 6 weeks. Turnover may be a good thing.
I would consider temporarily going up in hive numbers as a safety move.
 

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You need to either find the queen in the big hive and take her and a frame or 2 of bees and brood to a nuc box (make them think they swarmed) or leave it alone and let them swarm themselves. Problem is you already have capped Q cells. They normally swarm on or around the day the queen cells get capped. I would go back through it looking for the old queen to do the split. If you don't want it just hold it till the new queen is laying then either give it away to someone or sell it cheap. Or combine the bees and frames back into the original hive and give the old queen the hive tool to the head. If you can't find the old queen maybe just keep a close eye and grab the swarm when they leave the hive (hoping that they land somewhere you can get them).
 

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I would bet superceder. Probably a distinction without a difference.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I had that happen last year at this time. The queen in this box did not fly off but the swarm moved up under the hive cover. The best use of political signs that I have seen to protect the landing board. I got back in from out of the country that day and was going to do them the next day. They were fine after dark but the mosquito sprayer came by and killed the swarm at 100 yards from the road and all I found was dead bees the next day and the bees in the hive were ok..

I thought the queen and some of the bees had gone bk in the box and she had not. I pulled the q cells and made a split thinking the queen was there. Then the hive had to grown a new queen. :(

SB it was a surprise to see the 4 q cells all a little over 1/2 way up the frames/ capped and really nothing else in the other frames. Just a few half hearted vertical cells on bottom. Not sure that they were really q cells.

I put the queen and brood on the bottom and swapped boxes.

The weak hive has some eggs and brood started but not a lot. For a deep and super there were quite a few bees and they are adding to the super but it is mainly sugar water but the fall honey was almost black.

What about adding a deep to the weak hive and moving a few frames from the strong hive and dumping some bees into the weak hive???

Would it stop the strong one from swarming?


If I was serious I should have made three splits but I do not need any more bees right now. With all the crap right now it would be hard to help some newbies to have bees. The local bee club went to meeting on line.

Swarming in the Houston area has arrived with the weather change from cool to hot weather days.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
going to ck the bees today. Still lots of bees flying and still do not understand why 4 qc's in midframe on 3 frames and none on the bottom.

I did take them out but there were some some eggs and small larva incase of bee keeper help. ;)

The poisoned hive is doing better with flying /working bees.

Would it help this hive to dump bees from the strong hive because the 2deeps/2 suppers were full of bees when I went into the hive. Would it slow up swarming?

The healing hive did have a lot of bees but it was light in the deep and still about 2/5 full on the super from the fall. Bees had jumped on the gallon of sugar water and last week I added what I had left 3/5th a gallon. Keep feeding even though they have open honey cells and are working?

I do not mind giving bees away but at 50 Dollars a box it is an expensive gift plus a top and bottom unless I use one of the nuc boxes I built to play with last year. :)
 

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still do not understand why 4 qc's in midframe on 3 frames and none on the bottom. Superceder, leave them alone

Keep feeding even though they have open honey cells and are working? at some point you need to stop, they live or they die. How much of the old food frames did you rotate out ?

Would it help this hive to dump bees from the strong hive because the 2deeps/2 suppers were full of bees when I went into the hive. Would it slow up swarming? Healthy hive, keep that whole, add foundation to make new clean comb, and make splits to replace hives that may still die.
 
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