This beekeeping thing is always an adventure!!
So we tried something new this year, we split a hive. Just split it, no new queen. Just a split. Never did this before, but knew that it might work. So we made sure that both hives had new eggs in frames and plenty of pollen, honey and brood. We split them right next to each other too.
About a week later we checked and low and behold a queen cell. A – not a a few like we would hope, just one. Ok, the girls are pretty confident in their ONE cell. A couple weeks later we see a swarm in a tree.
We rush everything into place to catch this “swarm” and get them into a box and put on a queen excluder to keep her in, this is what we do when we get a swarm to encourage her to stay.
Anyway, two days later Robert goes to check the new “swarm” and all that is in the box are dead drones. Yep. Dead with their boy parts hanging out. Yes, we could tell.
So we figured out that it was not a swarm but the new queen on her mating flight. Oh my!! She was able to slip out because before they are bred they are still pretty small and can fit through an excluder. So we were not sure what happened after that.
This week, Robert went into both hives and yep! They both have fresh eggs!! Woo Hoo!! Two hives from that one!! So fun! There was a chance we would lose some bees, but instead we multiplied!! Not sure this will be the approach we take with all our hives, but we were pretty thrilled about the success for this split!