- I realize this is a big question to cover. But, just to give me
something to think about: I have two hives that both have very high
spring populations? I have another empty hive body and extra supers
that have never been used. What is involved in splitting my two hives
into a third? Specifically, when should you try to split and what
about a new queen?
- You can
1. Split the hive with about an equal number of brood and fresh eggs in
both and let the one which does not have eggs raise their own queen. But
you lose the time it takes for the queenless hive to rear its own queen, for
her to mate, and then for her eggs to mature into working bees--a matter of
2. Order a queen. I like to find the queen and leave her with some brood
on the old hivestand. The older worker bees will return to the hivestand.
They are the ones who will most likely reject a new queen. Take a lot of
brood (which will have younger nurse bees, and bees hatching) and put it on
a new stand. Be sure both have honey and plenty of bees. The new queen
goes with the new hive.
Anytime there is a honey flow and lots of bees in the hive is a good time to
divide except later in the season.
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Friday, May 04, 2001 10:55 AM
Subject: [beekeeping] splitting colonies?
> I realize this is a big question to cover. But, just to give me
> something to think about: I have two hives that both have very high
> spring populations? I have another empty hive body and extra supers
> that have never been used. What is involved in splitting my two hives
> into a third? Specifically, when should you try to split and what
> about a new queen?
> Jasper, GA
> Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
- Hi Dan,There are two ways to make spring splits. The first way is to take frames of brood and all adhering bees, making sure You don't have the queen, and put them into the third hive. Then give them a new queen. If both hives are strong You can give them frames from both. I usually put them in separate boxes for half an hour or so to let the colony odor dissipate a little before mixing them.Or if You find queen cells, You can give them a frame with the biggest and best looking queen cell and let them naturally take care of the rest of the queen raising, this almost always works for Me.If a hive has a huge population and You think they may swarm, then put the new hive with the queen cell on the original spot and move the colony You made the split from to a new site. This way the split gets all the forager bees and it will build up quicker than if You moved the split away. The bees just think that they have had a swarm depart.Most beekeepers use the spring to requeen their hives, that helps (but not always) to prevent swarming and helps ensure a good honey crop.Check them often thru May and early June for queen cells.I have had some great queens and colonies from queen cells.Good luck,
Attleboro, Massachusetts, USA
41.56 N 71.17 W
- I am hoping I will find myself in the same position as Dan soon
although not as many bees in both colonies as yet - however,
when I do come to try and split to create a third colony I'm not
sure whether there will be enough stores to share out between
original hives and intended new colony. Both colonies have 6
brood frames nearly full, 2 of stores and the remaining 3 frames
are new foundation in the process of being drawn out. I have just
put a super of drawn out foundation on each hive above the
Queen excluder. It's only my 2nd year of beekeeping and would
appreciate any advice, thanks.
Mick (Manchester UK)