Welcome, Guest

Author Topic: Huge Imbalance Between Hives  (Read 183 times)

Offline PhilK

  • House Bee
  • **
  • Posts: 234
  • Gender: Male
Huge Imbalance Between Hives
« on: June 28, 2016, 11:56:25 PM »
G'day,

Sorry for flooding this forum so much! We have two hives in our home yard. Both 10 frame deeps. Hive A has a brood box and a super, Hive B has a brood box and two supers. Hive A was traditionally the better hive but we requeened both and B is now a boomer. We gave them the extra super from A as they weren't using it.

Every morning Hive B has well and truly more than 10x the activity at the entrance.. only a few bees are coming and going from A. I'm worried about this huge imbalance - especially when spring time comes. We did an inspection on A and everything seemed OK apart from a general downsizing (see my 'Questions About Winter Inspections' thread).

Is there anything I can do? Should I swap the positions of the two hives to bolster Hive A's numbers? They're super heavy at the moment so to swap them I assume you just take them apart and move one box at a time?

Come spring time I'll be making splits from Hive B because that queen is a cracker!

Offline Jim 134

  • Super Bee
  • *****
  • Posts: 2496
  • Gender: Male
    • Franklin County Beekeepers Association
Re: Huge Imbalance Between Hives
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2016, 03:49:00 AM »
Scrap the boxes together with a ratchet strap.You pick up and move the hive with a hive carrier. Where I live if you take the boxes apart in the middle of the winter. You will cool bees down too much.



      BEE HAPPY Jim 134 :)
"Tell me and I'll forget,show me and I may  remember,involve me and I'll understand"
        Chinese Proverb

"The farmer is the only man in our economy who buys everything at retail, sells everything at wholesale, and pays the freight both ways."
 John F. Kennedy
Franklin County Beekeepers Association MA. http://www.franklinmabeekeepers.org/

Offline Wombat2

  • House Bee
  • **
  • Posts: 366
  • Gender: Male
Re: Huge Imbalance Between Hives
« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2016, 04:29:10 AM »
How close are they to each other and also any other structure (wall, shed, fence)? Which way are the facing - both the same? When did you read-queen and why?
David L

Offline PhilK

  • House Bee
  • **
  • Posts: 234
  • Gender: Male
Re: Huge Imbalance Between Hives
« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2016, 08:09:47 PM »
They are on the same hive stand facing the same direction about 1m apart from each other.

Requeened in February because one queen had a rubbish brood pattern (A), and we thought the other hive was queenless (B). Turns out after we bought the queens we saw a virgin queen in B, but we re-queened anyway because we'd bought the queen. Turned out to be a good move because B is going gangbusters now!

Offline Wombat2

  • House Bee
  • **
  • Posts: 366
  • Gender: Male
Re: Huge Imbalance Between Hives
« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2016, 12:24:29 AM »
Is there any structure or object close to hive A or does hive come into shade before B ? I'm thinking "drift" due to external influences confusing the workers returning to their right hive
David L

Offline PhilK

  • House Bee
  • **
  • Posts: 234
  • Gender: Male
Re: Huge Imbalance Between Hives
« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2016, 12:53:46 AM »
They both go into shade around the same time in the arvo, but the sun hits Hive B first in the morning (thanks to the new house being built next door!)
Hive B's brood area is larger and the queen doesn't seem to have slowed down at all but I was thinking maybe drift as well, so should I swap their positions?

Offline Wombat2

  • House Bee
  • **
  • Posts: 366
  • Gender: Male
Re: Huge Imbalance Between Hives
« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2016, 04:14:07 AM »
worth a try - we had a bit of a field day at our last club meeting and looked at 2 flow hives being set up.  They originally had a wall of hay bails beside them to shield the view from the street. They had found a difference in size with the one beside the bails being the slower. They were switched and in a short time the activity slowed in the one next to the bails again. This happened a couple of times until the wall was moved to get access with a digger beyond and guess what? - both hives flourished. So if you switch and the lower activity stays in the same spot then something
about the location is causing it - if not then the queen is lazy.
David L

 

anything