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Author Topic: very weak hive  (Read 3375 times)
filmmlif
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« on: June 17, 2004, 06:00:38 PM »

i pulled a frame full of brood and bees from a new hive and placed them in a new deep with a new queen. they accepted her but the hive is so weak i don't think they will make it. should i 1) find a swarm and kill that queen and combine the two or 2) just wait it out.
i feel i made a mistake by pulling the frame because my first hive queen is not producing too well (since the first week of april the hive has only filled 8 frames) and because i think the second hive is soooo weak.
any help is welcomed, folks.
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Robo
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« Reply #1 on: June 17, 2004, 06:27:16 PM »

If your first hive is not doing well either because of a poor queen,  why not kill her and merge the nuc with the good queen back into the mother hive.
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filmmlif
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« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2004, 07:27:58 PM »

robo, you always offer great advice but i think i might have trouble with that because she is my first! silly but true. i'm going to a beekeeper meeting this saturday and maybe i can buy a nuc or find a swarm or something. if not, i think what your saying makes sense. this morning when i inspected the hive the workers have mad two queen cells so they might be thinking the same thing.
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Finman
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« Reply #3 on: June 17, 2004, 10:50:48 PM »

Quote from: filmmlif
i pulled a frame full of brood and bees from a new hive and placed them in a new deep with a new queen. they accepted her but the hive is so weak i don't think they will make it. should i 1) find a swarm and kill that queen and combine the two or 2) just wait it out.
i feel i made a mistake by pulling the frame because my first hive queen is not producing too well (since the first week of april the hive has only filled 8 frames) and because i think the second hive is soooo weak.
any help is welcomed, folks.


"first week of april the hive has only filled 8 frames". Now 16.6. the hive should have 3-4 or more supers? Is that so?

If you take another frame of broods to little hive, it starts to get bigger.
Last summer I made many little hives and I put 15 w terrarium heater on the floor to give basic warming. Those hives developed 3 times faster than without heater. The price of heater is 22 $.

It is not nice if you have only one hive. If you have some problems with it, 100% of your hives have problems Smiley)

I have many hives that they had only 2-3 frame at the begining of April. I feeded with pollen the big ones and I warmed them with terrarium heater. When they developed I took broods from them and gives the weak ones. Now those weak ones have in 2-3 supers. The big ones have now 4-5 supers.  The heaters are still on the floor. Our temperature is now in the morning 8:00  8 C and yesterday the highest day temperature was 14C.

It must be at least 4 supers that colony is able to produce honey yield. 2 supers are enough at all.
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filmmlif
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« Reply #4 on: June 17, 2004, 11:08:30 PM »

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.
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Finman
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« Reply #5 on: June 18, 2004, 12:52:48 AM »

Quote from: filmmlif
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.
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TEN of IL
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« Reply #6 on: June 18, 2004, 11:46:25 AM »

The best advice is to pursue a new queen for the hive that you took the single frame from.  If, as Finman mentioned, there is not a problem with disease then you have an extremely lazy queen.  The problem with keeping a poor queen is that it never gets any better.  If your not careful robbers or worse yet wax moths will exploit the weakness and decimate your hive.

In regards to adding the frame to the weak hive, I have had great success in doing this but be sure to restrict the entrance and feed the colony in the process.  A three day check rotation will keep you in the know as to the condition of the hive so as to avoid the robbers and waxmoth problem.

And finally regarding the fondness for the initial queen.  It is a good thing.  But unfortunatly this too shall pass.  Good beekeeping managment requires that problematic issues be dealt with aggressively.  If you cannot learn from what others provide then you will learn from the tried and true method of time and materials.  Much time will be spent and much materials will be lost in nuturing the proper queen / beekeeper relationship.  Understanding that the beekeeper provides the opportunity and the queen provides the motivation and the workers is priceless.  Accepting nothing less than 100% from your queens is a requirement.

I am ever in awe of some queens and their capability to develop and drive/motivate a hive.  Hence I am sure that is why they are called Queens.
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filmmlif
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« Reply #7 on: June 18, 2004, 12:08:55 PM »

ten,thanks for the peptalk...i'm acquiring a new queen and taking the old queen away. your words were very wise and i appreciate the thought. what do you think i should do with the very weak hive? move the frame back to hive #1?
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TEN
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« Reply #8 on: June 18, 2004, 02:43:14 PM »

I would give the new queen in the weak hive a shot at making a go of it.  As noted as long as you restrict the entrance and watch for robbers and wax moths every 3 days, you might just pull her through.  She might suprise you with her motivation and performance.

The old beekeeper that got me started once told me you could start a hive of bees by just taking one frame full of bees, honey and brood (some newly laid eggs) and start a new hive.  He indicated that the workers would recognize that they didn't have any queen and would make another.  

I had a similar instance to the one you have indicated.  It was first part of August and I had inhereted a hive from a gentleman that wanted to quit.  When I opened it up there were maybe a handful of bees.  It appeared that the hive was severely overcrowded and had produced 5 or so queens.  All of which had left the hive.  So I ordered another queen ( after some haggleing with the supplier ) and installed her and a bare frame of brood and honey from another hive (my first Buckfast queen, by the way).  Between that time and the end of the honey flow she filled one hivebody with honey and was ready for winter (robbing was in full swing when I came along).  So take a shot you just might be supprised.

Oh and concerning robbing.  Don't even get that started.  Robbing can be started by the beekeeper by poor sanitation with suger, wax, propolis and/or honey in the beeyard.  Keep everything cleaned up.  If for some reason you have honey to repartriate to the bees, do so at least 8 miles from your bee yard and preferably not near someone elses.  Robbers can decimate a weaker newly started hive in a little bit of no time.

Hope this helps.
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filmmlif
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« Reply #9 on: June 19, 2004, 06:34:46 PM »

hive #2 is no more...i just didn't think they would make it...so few workers and half a frame of brood.
so i removed the queen...i'm going to keep her alive for the next few days with hopes of finding a swarm...if not, she needs to go. and i took the frame with brood and bees and placed them in hive number one. i need/want 1 strong hive for the year.
my first beekeeping heartache...
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