finman and robo,
my 'strong' hive only has 8 frames of brood/honey after 2 months...should it be producing more than that?
if so robo thinks i should combine the two hives and i'm beginning to believe him.
advice needed for the new kid.
First look, if your colony is sick. Do you have rotten or dead larvas. Does your brood area is entire or is it spotted with empty cells, like shooted with shotgun.
You may have an unsuitable queen. She is old or damaged. It is better to kill the old one and continue with the new. Put the new one to the top and net between colonies so they will be same scented. Kill the old one and put them together.
You should have at summer about 14-16 frames of brood so you can say that it is a good colony. Brood must be entire like a cotton honeycomb.
When a new queen begin to lay eggs, after 2 months colony is able to catch honey. It consume it's food to new larvas. When new bees are over 2 weeks old, they began to harvest honey from field. That is why it takes long time. The balance on nursing bees and harvesting bees must be proper.
You can get more honey, if you take queen away during a week or two and make a nuc with the queen. After egg laying brake you can put commercial new queen to the hive and so you have 2 hives again.
If your brood area is sick, you must put the colony to new hive with new wax frames. And destroy old brood frames. And look, if your new colony is also infected.