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Discussion Starter #1
I got a hive I pulled from house in Feb. I requeened it to a Russian queen now its fills up two deep ten frame supers. its packed with bees all frames are full of honey brood larvae and eggs. Most of the time I cant find the queen in it. I can get a queen to re queen 2nd hive or should I let them make one. Im all ears...:s
 

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I would say it would depend upon where your Russian queen came from that took over the hive. If she came from a certified breeder like Coy's, Go for a walk away split. However if the queen is one that came from any other place but a certified breeder, it may be best to get a queen. The reason I say that is simply that in second generation Russian queens that didn't come from a certified breeder the genetics aren't the best and they tend to get angry which is due to the drones that mated with the original queen. So take it with a grain of salt but that's my opinion on that.
 

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I would say it would depend upon where your Russian queen came from that took over the hive. If she came from a certified breeder like Coy's, Go for a walk away split. However if the queen is one that came from any other place but a certified breeder, it may be best to get a queen. The reason I say that is simply that in second generation Russian queens that didn't come from a certified breeder the genetics aren't the best and they tend to get angry which is due to the drones that mated with the original queen. So take it with a grain of salt but that's my opinion on that.

my queens come from a local guy. he was all Russian but I have no idea from where or certification. Their super gentle awesome brood pattern (I don't think she know how to miss a cell lol). seem like honey was a little less then my Italian hives.


is there a min I need to move hive when I split it. can I just split the two hive bodies and find out what ones queenless. Also it in the high 80s and low 90s here but I was reading I nee to block the entrance but seem to hot to do this. O should I put 2nd supers on the hives or wait after split?
 

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Once you make a split then the one roaring hive is queen less. The hive with a queen is much more calmer.
They may be meaner without the queen that is the hive you know that need a new queen.
It is better to get a good queen rather than to let them make their own.
At 80 to 90 do not block the entrance because it is too hot inside already. Keep the entrance open
at 100% unless there is a cold snap though unlikely in mid May. The hive with the queen you can
add a super on. The one without the queen will need all the resources for the new queen to use later on.
 

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Ok, to answer the questions and my concerns about it. When doing a "walk away" split. Basically you take the hive, split the thing in half 50/50 as far as the brood chamber goes. Then you make sure that there are eggs in each side of the split. Once you have done that you are ready to walk away from it and know the girls can handle the rest.

DO NOT block them in. That is an OLD myth pertaining to keeping the field bees in and making them know it's their new home etc. You may want to restrict the entrance with a reducer, larger opening will be fine to keep down robbing. When you do this split what will happen is the field bees will go back to the main hive at it's original location. This is ALL bees that have oriented. Please keep in mind also that just because a bee has come outside and pooped it does NOT mean it has oriented.

Since these girls are russian you should probably go ahead and super them up as they like to swarm faster then the rest of breeds.

As for a MIN amount to move a split, NO another MYTH. You can set them 6 inches apart and it won't matter. The field bees will go back to the hive in the original location, but the rest WILL stay with the brood. Their instinct is to stick with the brood.

I myself just did 10 hive splits Friday, each one getting 5 frames of brood/bees and a new Russian queen. I had to find the original queen though to do mine. I did another split 3 weeks after installing package bees where I let them make their own queens though with NO problems. Actually ended up with two great cells from that split, and moved one into a split of it's own before emergence. So just to let you know, there's nothing YOU can't handle about doing a split on your hive.
 

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For an opening to keep down the robbing if there is any, I would use a window screen for that.
At 90F the bees have to work harder to keep their hive cool down with so many bees.
Ventilation is very important to not over heat the hive causing messy melted comb inside.
I put a piece of high packing styro foam on top then put another hive cover to shade them down
in 95F on full sun.
 

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For an opening to keep down the robbing if there is any, I would use a window screen for that.
At 90F the bees have to work harder to keep their hive cool down with so many bees.
Ventilation is very important to not over heat the hive causing messy melted comb inside.
I put a piece of high packing styro foam on top then put another hive cover to shade them down
in 95F on full sun.
I like to split my hives at this time of the year because it is nearing the end of the flow. Sure it will cost me some honey, but the split seems to produce better queens during the flow.You can get good queens after the flow ,but it will cost you to feed. The reasons I like producing my own queens are, I feel like I can produce a better queen because I know that my bees are strong ( survivors w/o chemicals)not wimpy bees( survivors because of chemicals). And, I like the brood break (mites with no place to incubate their eggs) vs. giving them a laying queen. When you make your split don't forget to split the pollen frames, are you will be scratching your head wondering why one queen is building so much faster than the other. Remember that brood in your hive is all different ages. Make your splits, so that you have different aged brood in each one. This is so that when your queen is breed, your new hive will be young bees to nurse the brood.
 

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There is no one best way, but if you have a big strong double deep hive you should have a good chance of success no matter how you go about it. Michael Bush's web site has tons of very good information on splitting.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
so can I just set the top half of the hive on another bottom board and put a lid on it and walk away.... seem to simple, lol


also I was reading that Russian bee always have queen cells. Ive not seen any but they do seem to make more drones than my italians. the Italian one are also bright yellow with small black strips while the Russian are black with small yellow strips. but idk if there true Russian just what I was gave by local queen breeder.
 

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No, to do the infamous "walk away" split, you must have <3 day old larvae in the queenless portion. The brood oval must be split to provide a reasonable assurance of young cells.

If your upper box and lower box both have a portion of the brood oval and that portion is actively being laid into, then yes, just splitting the hive will work. However, by June many hives are entering the backfill period, and the upper box will be free of young larvae. In that case, the upper half will be unable to raise a queen, and the bees that are carried over in the box will be foragers and not nurse bees.

Inspect the frames and assure yourself you have just laid eggs or recently hatched larvae in both portions (or move frames to create this condition).

Be aware that a walk-away require 16 days to hatch a queen, about 7 days to mate and begin laying, and 20 days to the very first cohort of new brood. In the inter-regnum the hive will dwindle. What will your flow be like in 45 days? Will you be in a July dearth? There is also a 25-30% chance that the virgin queen won't take, and the hive will extinguish. If you have 40 hives, the casualty rate is immaterial, if you have one, it represents a big potential loss.

The internet guru that has popularized walk-away splits uses narrow hives and short boxes and top entrances, this generates a "chimney" brood pattern. The chimney increases the likelihood that a blind shuffle split by box will have appropriate young larvae. The downside of the particular box-frame-entrance prescription is that it makes other management more difficult.

Buying a queen, though not free, results in a nearly uninterrupted transition through June. June should be the peak of your honey production, so the $20 queen will be more than paid back by production. You lose money in the walk-away.

So-called "Russians", several generations away from the pure inbred Vladivostok lineage, are going to be American mutts. The Vladivostok bees can trace lineage back to Ukrainian steppe bees that had a lot of "Italian" genes in them anyway. "Russians" are more a marketing term than a genetic descriptor for bees that are not created from known crosses.
 
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