Capped cells and hive splitting

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New Bee
Aug 20, 2022
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Ilkeston, Derbyshire, UK
Hive Type
Number of Hives
Hi everyone, I'm looking for advice and reassurance that I've done the right thing. I'm new to beekeeping having got my first hive last August.
This year I had planned on expanding the number of colonies so got 2 nucs. I did an inspection yesterday and noticed numerous capped swarm cells, so I decided to split the hive into the original and 2 new nucs. I took out 3 frames per nuc, with a few capped swarm cells, capped brood and what honey I could as this was limited, plus added 2 new waxed frames. I'm now feeding the nucs and original hive 1:1 syrup to make sure they are sufficiently fed. Any benefit in giving the nucs any pollen patties too?
The original hive is in the same location with the 2 nucs just behind it.
I noticed the queen was a lot slimmer, I believe indicating that the colony is preparing her to swarm? But she has her wings clipped. Probably a stupid question but could she abscond just by walking out? I removed any remaining swarm cells from the orinal hive.
Based on the research I've done, I think I'm on the right path, but any comments and feedback would be most welcome.
Many thanks.
The flying bees (the swarm instigators) will all have returned to the Q+ hive now, so although there is a lot less brood in there, they may still swarm.
The nucs will now have the bare minimum nurse bees in to cover the brood so will struggle to forage so they may need some feeding, the trouble is, you have to be careful that the fliers that have returned to the Q+ hive don't signal a free food source in the nucs and instigate robbing, so keep an eye on things.
The q+ hive will now be packed with foraging bees so should not need supplementary feeding at all.
Pollen patties are pretty pointless in this situation.
I would move the two nucs further away from the main hive now as there's little benefit in keeping them all together.
I don't think that what you learnt from your research benefited you much, but the job is done now so all you can is keep an eye on things and manage it as best as possible.
Be aware that the main hive may still swarm. I've seen it happen.
could she abscond just by walking out?
clipped queens can still fly a little - what usually happens is, she flies with the swarm, crashes and gets lost in the undergrowth and the swarm, once they realise that the queen is lost, will return to the hive, and wait for the first virgin queen from the swarm cells to emerge and then they'll swarm with her instead.
As per JBM. What is done is done. You put a "few capped swarm cells ", into each nuc. I would cut these down to one, otherwise they could swarm too if enough bees.
You were lucky, the queen usually leaves, depending on weather, once cells are capped. I suggest a read up on swarm control. Many different methods. Learn one and stick to it for a while. I started off with the Pagden, as this is commonly taught, but now nuc the queen

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