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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi folks,

This will be my second year keeping bees. I started a single hive last year, and over wintered them in 2 deeps. Now that the sun has started to poke out a bit, they are out and flying. Plenty of pollen coming home. Which I'm assuming is going to trigger the queen into starting to lay for spring now? I'd like to do an even split to my hive. I'll let them raise a queen. When should I do this? I'm guessing I want to do it when the queen is laying heavily, so I can have a few frames of eggs in each hive. Also their will need to be enough nurse bees to keep the larva warm.. Aside from that I'm not sure. March, April? Sooner the better? :scratch: Any help is welcome.

Thanks! :)
 

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If you're planning to let them make a queen, you'll want to wait until there are plenty of drones. Before you split make sure there are loads of bees, lots of brood coming along, nectar and pollen coming in the door and a good population of drones. What date that translates into in Oregon.....you'll have to ask someone locally.
 

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Hello I'm about 50 miles north of you. We worked the hives saturday and found about 4-5 frames of eggs and unsealed brood average per hive already. maybe 1 or 2 sides of sealed brood and the rest of the top box full of honey and pollen. It's earley but I reversed most of the hives as the top boxes were full and the bottoms were not yet being layed in. My plan is to pull nucs as soon as queens are available. Last year the bees went to almonds and stopped in susanville for a quick set on prunes, they got back to me on april first and were about to bust. With no queens lined up I opted to let them make their own and just pulled five frames out of the middle of the broodnest and moved to a new yard . No time was spent looking for queens and about 25% of the nucs had the old queens. the weather was wet but the young queens were able to fly for about 5 days to mate . I was able to compare nucs with a good laying queen and those left to make their own. The nucs that had old queens and the hives large hives that made their own made honey, the nucs that raised their queens did not build up to a honey crop but did overwinter without much help. to answer your question of when to split, it would depend if you had queens or not. With queens a split during the maple flow would work as long as you watch for starvation after . Without queens you are gambling on the weather, for me not untill april but I don't think I'll do that again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hey thanks for the info Hevy, I don't plan to introduce a queen, so I think I'll be waiting until I see drones flying to split. I haven't done a full inspection on my hive yet, I guess I should next time the weather co-operates. There are a lot of hives down here within a few miles of me, so I'm thinking that if I'm kicking out drones, everyone else likely is too. I'd like to pick up some local genetics, as there seems to be a real healthy population around. It's great to be seeing so much activity this early! I hived a 3lb package last year, I think in May, and they just got built up to overwinter. I'm hoping to harvest a bit more honey this year, and am looking forward to this small expansion to the bee yard. I'm also planning on building some nuc boxes, and maybe trying to catch a swarm.. We'll see though :)

Thanks again all! :applause:
 
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