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Author Topic: weak hive question  (Read 689 times)
charlotte
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« on: May 05, 2009, 11:51:37 AM »

Ok- So here is the situation..

I have one hive that is doing pretty well, one hive that is weak (only covering about 3 frames, but lots of eggs, so the queen is doing her thing), and package of bees coming next week..

I considered taking some brood from the hive that is doing pretty well to boost the weak hive, but then I will have two so-so hives..

The package I have coming is a 3#, I was thinking of dumping some of the bees from the package into the weak hive. Would this work? Or will it cause issues because they will have bonded to the queen that came with them in the package & then cause havoc on that hive??

My gut tells me to just do a newspaper combine of the two, but it is early in the season & I'd like to give it a go if I can. (So far nothing in the swarm trap, dang it, that would have been too easy!)

Thanks for the help! 
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kathyp
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« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2009, 12:37:44 PM »

don't know what your weather has been like, but i would be tempted to give your weak hive more time before doing anything.  it's early yet.  if the queen is laying well, they have a good chance of building up without your help.

i would not use bees from the package.  if you feel you need to keep numbers up in the weak hive, you could take one frame of capped brood from your strong hive.  this will help until your weaker hive has a chance to catch up.

also, consider feeding the weak hive.  they will need plenty of food to raise that brood and if their numbers are down, they may not have the opportunity to bring in enough, fast enough.  just make sure that you feed in a way that will not encourage robbing.  use and entrance reducer if you have one.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
charlotte
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« Reply #2 on: May 05, 2009, 12:48:32 PM »

Thanks...I wasn't sure if there was just too few bees to allow them to build up enough with out any help. I am already feeding & have the entrace reducer on too. Glad to hear that as long as my queen is laying well they have a chance to recover.  It has been pretty cool here yet. Nights in the 30's and days 60's to some low 70's. And rainy. Could really use some nice weather!!! (I'm sure the bees would like that too!)
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kathyp
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« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2009, 01:04:35 PM »

keep an eye on the numbers so that they have enough to cover your brood.

one other thing you can do....take a frame of workers from your other hive and shake them into the weaker hive. make sure you do not have the queen on there!  this will bring your numbers up right away if you feel that the hive is to weak to take care of brood.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
charlotte
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Location: WI


« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2009, 01:11:00 PM »

Won't the workers just fly back home to their original hive, once they leave to forage again??  Or will they stay because they are needed to cover the brood?
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kathyp
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« Reply #5 on: May 05, 2009, 04:47:41 PM »

foragers forage, younger bees stay home and tend brood, clean house, etc.  shake your frame in the warmth of the day when most of the foragers are out gathering.  you will lose very few, and very few spats between bees.  they settle in to caring for the brood in the hive.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
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