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Author Topic: Splitting hives in the same yard without bees returning to the original location  (Read 1671 times)

Offline OzBuzz

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So our season here in Australia is coming to an end... About 8 weeks left before it cools down. I'm requeening my hives next week and I have a few hives that are three boxes high with the two brood boxes with ample stores in them. I want to take one of the two boxes, move it to a new location within my yard, and put a new queen in the original box and the new one. How can I do it so as to limit the number of bees that return to the original location? I aim to do the setup and make all 23 hives I'm requeening queenless 24 hrs before I install the new caged queens... Any advice appreciated

Offline backyard warrior

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You could move the one box to the new location and shake the bees in front of the entrance and the house bees will go back into the hive and the field bees will return to the original hive this is considered an artifical swarm procedure.  The young bees will stay with the moved box and the field bees will go to the old box.

Online iddee

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Place both halves 2 feet each side the original location. The returning bees will split half to one box and half to the other. "approximately".
"Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me . . . Anything can happen, child. Anything can be"

*Shel Silverstein*

Offline OzBuzz

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You could move the one box to the new location and shake the bees in front of the entrance and the house bees will go back into the hive and the field bees will return to the original hive this is considered an artifical swarm procedure.  The young bees will stay with the moved box and the field bees will go to the old box.

Putting a new queen in with field bees will be ok? Will some of the field bees take over the role of nurse bees?

Offline OzBuzz

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Place both halves 2 feet each side the original location. The returning bees will split half to one box and half to the other. "approximately".

What if I don't have room to put them beside each other like that? There are hives about two feet either side of the current box-although I Spode I could squeeze two in there if I push the others over only very slightly...

Offline backyard warrior

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Ozz buzz that procedure is more for preventing swarming of a hive by shaking the bees in front of the  new hive the nurse bees will go back into that hive and nurse bees will usually except a new queen easier than field bees.  I would make sure there is brood in both boxes and just split the hives and requeen them both they will be fine you will then have nurse bees in both boxes and the field bees will go back to the original hive

Online iddee

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Then I would split the brood and house bees 60/40, and move the 60 away. The foragers will return to the original hive, making it 50/50.
"Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me . . . Anything can happen, child. Anything can be"

*Shel Silverstein*

Offline scdw43

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Make the split, make the split going to the new location with the most frames of brood, move it to the new location, the flying force will return to the old location.  If you have eight weeks left you can give them a frame of brood to even things out later.  Be sure to feed the bees in the new location until they have a flying force at least 21 days.
Winter Ventilation: Wet bees die in hours maybe minutes, no matter how much honey is in the hive.

Offline OzBuzz

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Make the split, make the split going to the new location with the most frames of brood, move it to the new location, the flying force will return to the old location.  If you have eight weeks left you can give them a frame of brood to even things out later.  Be sure to feed the bees in the new location until they have a flying force at least 21 days.

Thanks Iddee and Scdw43 - i'll give that a shot...

Offline Michael Bush

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Some are always going back if they are close enough to find it.  Shake in enough extra bees or put both halves facing the old location and nothing at the old location.
Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm en espanol: bushfarms.com/es_bees.htm  auf deutsche: bushfarms.com/de_bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
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"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen