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7/19 Hive Split

Big fun today!

A few weeks ago Matt’s hive looked like it was going to swarm.  He added a new super and it gave the girls a place to spread out.  I asked if he would give me a split from his hive and in the name of crazy bee science he agreed.

I’ve been really interested in getting a Russian queen primarily for their ability to over winter. I found Mikes Bees and Honey and ordered me up a a buzzing laying comrade.

russian_queen

Our Russian queen arrived in a queen cage with a few attendants to see to her traveling needs.

Although the UPS guy was a bit freaked out to be delivering a buzzing package, she arrived at my office in perfect shape.  With queen in hand and help from Payal (4-H club member extraordinaire) we (Me, Matt and Payal) made our way to the Apiary.

We had to go through 4 supers of mostly honey in Matt’s hive before we got to good frames of brood.  We spotted his queen along the way. Finally we grabbed three frames of brood and bees and put them in Ba-bee-lonia.  There were still a few bees left from before but so few and so long without a queen that they didn’t mind us one bit.  We’ll see how well they play with the others.  We hung the queen cage between two of the frames, added an entrance reducer and a top feeder and closed her up.

I’m going to watch the top feeder to make sure it doesn’t mold in our current heat and attract ants.  I’ll also get the ant moats on it today. If they are taking feed and it gets yucky, I’ll switch to an entrance feeder but I’m afraid of the new hive getting robbed.