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Author Topic: nuc advice  (Read 3664 times)
randydrivesabus
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« on: August 04, 2007, 05:19:59 PM »

i split into a nuc last tuesday. included with the eviction was a swarm cell on a frame. so how long should i wait to inspect? i'm looking to move them into a deep and then combining a weak hive with an underperforming queen into them. and while i've got your attention....i want this 'new' hive to be where the weak one is now. how will the nuc gang acclimate to the new position?
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2007, 07:31:18 PM »

>split into a nuc last tuesday. included with the eviction was a swarm cell on a frame. so how long should i wait to inspect?

You won't have a laying queen for 24 days after the split.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2007, 09:13:51 PM »

sure want, it might take 45 days for a laying queen after a split
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randydrivesabus
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« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2007, 06:10:31 AM »

i reckon it depends on if the swarm cell is my new queen or not. i'll inspect at around 24 days. i need to sharpen my bee math up.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2007, 09:58:49 AM »

http://www.bushfarms.com/beesmath.htm
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Michael Bush
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randydrivesabus
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« Reply #5 on: September 03, 2007, 01:47:31 PM »

so its now 34 days since i did the split. i just inspected the nuc and saw no queen, no eggs or brood, and some very unhappy bees. (its possible that there is a queen and she's not laying yet and i just didn't see her).i'm not sure if i should wait another week and a half to see if there will bee some eggs or brood or to just combine this nuc with the hive i was trying to raise a new queen for and not dispatch the queen in that hive. i reckon i could buy a queen and requeen now if i need to.

if i had no one to ask i would combine and depending on how the hive i want to requeen seems to be doing i may requeen with a purchased queen. if i'm going to combine i would put the nuc on top of the hive i'm going to combine into for a day so the field bees from the nuc can reorient and then put the frames from the nuc into a deep with some drawn frames and then newspaper it over the other hive.

advice and comments greatly appreciated.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2007, 02:43:44 PM »

>i'm not sure if i should wait another week and a half to see if there will bee some eggs or brood

34 days.  They started with a four day old (from the egg) just hatched larvae.  It takes them another 12 days for the queen to emerge and another two weeks for her to harden and get mated.  At the MOST it takes another three weeks.  After that she will be a drone layer if she does mate.  So another 21 days is 33 days.  If she's not laying within the next few days, she'll be shooting blanks anyway.  The best insurance is a frame of brood.  It will put off them turning into laying workers (which is controled by pheromones from open brood NOT by the lack of a queen) and it will give them the means to start a queen if that's what they need.
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Michael Bush
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randydrivesabus
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« Reply #7 on: September 03, 2007, 03:55:11 PM »

by a frame of brood you mean eggs? open brood? capped brood? all of the above?
my thoughts on combining is because the hive i want to combine with is from a package i started this past spring and it has only filled one deep (barely) to now. that is why i think they need a new queen. if i add this nuc to them now they may make it through the winter.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #8 on: September 03, 2007, 05:58:41 PM »

>by a frame of brood you mean eggs? open brood? capped brood? all of the above?

Eggs and or open brood.  If you can find eggs without open brood or even a little capped brood, I'd be surprised.  Smiley  But it's the open brood that's the point as far as preventing laying workers and eggs would indicate some YOUNG open brood for them to start a queen from.
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Michael Bush
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randydrivesabus
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« Reply #9 on: September 03, 2007, 07:00:29 PM »

ok...thanks MB. i will see what my other hives have to offer tomorrow.
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« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2007, 09:05:10 AM »

When doing a split you cut down the population of bees. And without a queen , it may not be sustainable. While the math Michael posts is correct the situation does not always follow the math. You may end up with a queenless hive or a laying worker. My recommendation is after 14 days place a frame of young brood in the hive. The reasons are as others have mentioned. The number of worker bees is dropping to unhealthy levels. Also if the firsts queen attempt did not take you give them a second chance. If the numbers drop low enough you now have a hive that can easily in up with a wax moth problem or other issue.

Also this is not scientific in nature but my personal observation. A brood frame cuts down on the likely hood of a laying worker. Once a hive has a laying worker you cannot just insert a queen and get them to accept it. They have already gone past that point.

The issue comes up as to how many times should you add brood to a split? That is up to you. After three attempts I will combine them back. Others may do that differently. That usually means over a month has gone by.

Sincerely,
Brendhan
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #11 on: September 04, 2007, 09:02:03 PM »

>You may end up with a queenless hive or a laying worker.

Correct.

> My recommendation is after 14 days place a frame of young brood in the hive.

Exactly.  At least after 24 but after 14 it will be helpful to a struggling nuc anyway and may resolve other issues.  On the other hand, they might have a virgin at that point and she may not make it back from mating later, so they may need some more later.
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Michael Bush
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randydrivesabus
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« Reply #12 on: September 05, 2007, 12:38:45 PM »

so i just came in from stealing a frame of brood from one hive and giving to the nuc.

the bees in the hive i stole it from were very calm and couldn't care less that i was invading. it wasn't too easy to find what i was looking for but they have plenty of stores and i think i will leave them alone until the spring.

the nuc is an entirely different story. these bees were very aggressive and difficult to deal with. i popped the top and they were all over me. the hive this split came from is a somewhat aggressive hive also.

so if they raise a queen from this frame then she should be laying in a month? and i should be able to see a queen cell in how many days? 8 or so? makes more sense to check for a queen cell and if none is present then to install another frame of brood. this brings me to mid-october already.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #13 on: September 06, 2007, 06:40:11 AM »

>the nuc is an entirely different story. these bees were very aggressive and difficult to deal with. i popped the top and they were all over me. the hive this split came from is a somewhat aggressive hive also.

Queenless bees are not usually very happy.

>so if they raise a queen from this frame then she should be laying in a month?

24 days.

> and i should be able to see a queen cell in how many days?

One.

> 8 or so?

If you don't see one in two they aren't doing their job.

> makes more sense to check for a queen cell and if none is present then to install another frame of brood. this brings me to mid-october already.

The main use of the brood is to answer the question "do they have a queen?".  Once the question is answered you can decide what to do about it or let them resolve it.  It's getting a bit late now for them to make a queen and then build up enough to get through the winter.  You may want to buy a queen if they are queenless.
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Michael Bush
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randydrivesabus
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« Reply #14 on: September 09, 2007, 12:34:19 PM »

i finally got around to looking for a queen cell in the nuc and found one on the frame i gave them 4 days ago.
so....i will look again for eggs at the end of this month. theres still a frame of honey in there that they can feed on if they need to. also on frame of brood is some capped and uncapped brood so their population should remain stable for a while.
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randydrivesabus
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« Reply #15 on: October 02, 2007, 01:45:51 PM »

well i now feel like a failure...i can't find a queen in the nuc and there should be one there. i do see some brood but at this point i'm guessing that theres a laying worker. i don't see eggs but i never have seen them before in any hive. maybe someday i will. there are a lot of drones in this nuc too. its too late i think to introduce a queen so i'm going to combine this nuc with my weak hive and then feed after they combine. i looked at the weak hive and it looks pretty good now except that its only 1 deep.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #16 on: October 02, 2007, 06:45:04 PM »

To see eggs, wear your reading glasses, use a flashlight, get the light right and if all else fails take a digital picture, blow it up and study it.
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Michael Bush
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Cindi
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« Reply #17 on: October 04, 2007, 09:54:40 PM »

I have to make a comment here.  Randy's colony may be raising a new queen, Michael you say that she will probably be laying in about 24 days.

Randy, what is your weather like?  I probably am not understanding the weather conditions in your area.  Is your weather where you live warm enough for this newly emerged queen to go out on her nuptual flight?  Are there drones flying in your area when she would be heading out the door?  I don't think anyone in this thread has addressed the weather issues with queens flying to drone congregation areas.  I am curious about this weather thing.  Have a wonderful day, best of this great life.  Cindi
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #18 on: October 06, 2007, 11:50:02 PM »

http://www.bushfarms.com/beesmath.htm
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Michael Bush
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"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
randydrivesabus
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« Reply #19 on: October 07, 2007, 07:08:49 AM »

Cindi-the weather here has been unusually warm for the time of year...it has been very dry. its a complicated climate since we are at 2800' and subject to rapid weather changes. last year i was walking around outside in shirtsleeves in December and we were very cold in late January and all of February.
Anyway....i've already combined the nuc with my weakest hive and will start feeding them today. my weakest hive looked pretty good the day i did the combine so i hope to come out of winter in good shape with it.
i looked through that nuc for a queen and found none...if there is one she'll have to duke it out with the queen in the 'weak' hive.
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