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Mixing bees

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jezd 

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If I have a number of queenless nucs all raising new QC's can I just mix bees if one looks a little weak, I assume so given that none are loyal to any queen at this stage.

Ta

Jez
 

jezd 

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thanks, I did it in the end anyway, I think as these hives are all queenless (QC still in hives) its not an issue, just keeping the hives bee count balanced across 2-3 hives until the queens emerge
 

Hivemaker. 

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The older bee's will obviously fly back if done in the same apairy,but mixing bee's is no problem especially mixing more than just two lots,if i wish to make up more strong hives i just go down the row of hives taking a frame of brood and bee's from each of eleven hives,(minus the queens) putting each frame into the brood box as i go,then from couple more hives shake in some more bee's,use a empty super as well,travel screen on,load up and move to new location,add new queen in cage,but with only tiny bit of fondant so she is released quick. Never any fighting,and the big hives don't really miss one frame of bee's,did some middle of last week,they have now nearly filled a super. be sure you don't have any disease when doing this.
 
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marcros 

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The older bee's will obviously fly back if done in the same apairy,but mixing bee's is no problem especially mixing more than just two lots,if i wish to make up more strong hives i just go down the row of hives taking a frame of brood and bee's from each of eleven hives,(minus the queens) putting each frame into the brood box as i go,then from couple more hives shake in some more bee's,use a empty super as well,travel screen on,load up and move to new location,add new queen in cage,but with only tiny bit of fondant so she is released quick. Never any fighting,and the big hives don't really miss one frame of bee's,did some middle of last week,they have now nearly filled a super. be sure you don't have any disease when doing this.
I have heard that if you mix more than 2 hives, the bees don't know who they are fighting against, so settle down quite quickly. Mixing just 2 hives means that there is 1 enemy!!
 

Hivemaker. 

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That does seem to be true,only ever had fighting with two lots mixed,but even then if you take them for a good bumpy drive round they unite okay, by the time they reach there new location they are friends,you are there number one enemy when you open them up.Stripped down and united severeral over strong five frame nuc's last week as well,leaving one frame of brood and queen behind in each nuc,uniting the rest into full brood box's,with new queens.
 
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