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Michaelf 

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Good Morning, I am going to have a go at using a top bar hive this year and have some questions regarding them.
If I was to use a queen excluder in the middle of the hive, so have one half for queen and brood and the other for honey, and made sure the entrance/exit holes were the honey side then would this prevent swarming? Because the queen would be contained within the brood section with no entrance or exit.:confused:

Thanks

Michael
 

iball 

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Michael, I don't think you can stop swarming by locking the queen indoors. I'm sure that you'll end with with a very stressed and dead queen. Then when an emergency queen cell hatches she won't be able to get out.

Or don't queens loose weight prior to swarming so that they can fly and this reduction in size will enable her to squeeze through the QE.

I don't know what the answer is when using a TBH but locking the door isn't it.

Ian
 

oliver90owner 

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If I was to use a queen excluder in the middle of the hive, so have one half for queen and brood and the other for honey, and made sure the entrance/exit holes were the honey side then would this prevent swarming?

Of course it would. Would also stop other bees leaving the hive?

RAB
 

Widdershins 

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..are you trying to get more honey, or actually stop the bees from swarming?

If you are using a TBH for the first time, with a relatively small colony, I think swarming will be the last thing on their mind....they will need time to build comb etc. OR are you worried that they will abscond once intially placed in said hive?
 

Brosville 

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If it's your first foray into beekeeping, it's probably best not to reinvent the wheel straight away - for the reasons already mentioned, I don't think your plan is going to work - apart from anything else, the best place for the entrances is midway along the "front" (long side) of the hive.
About the only way I could think of making it work would be to "super" the hive with entrances either end from the lower part by means of queen excluders, and remove the "follower boards" so they could gain access.......
(as to whether they'd use it as designed is another matter):)
As for controlling swarming.......... it probably won't!
 
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Brosville 

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we may disagree on that, but what do you think about my "supering" idea?
(and with an end entrance do you use a mouse guard in winter?):biggrinjester:
 

Mike a 

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haha, we could argue the pro's and cons of central or end entrances all day no doubt Bros (on FoTB), both have their merits.

I was planning on building up my number of colonies this year to 8-10 currently 7 and queen rearing a few queens then next year I may start on this duel queen project for a TBH. Would need to be 4ft long and both colonies at the start would be roughly the same size and daughters of the same parent to even stand half a chance of working. Then divide them again after the main flow for winter



The vertical QE's could be a single QE (shown in thick black lines) then a QE placed below the supers of national size although not drawn to scale of course !
 

Michaelf 

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Hi I am a newbee so didn't relise that was a bad thing to do, all I wanted to do is make sure that they don't swarm especially when i'm not there.

Michael
 

oliver90owner 

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A colony is unlikely, once established, to swarm before drone brood is present - no, even emerged.

That is a fairly basic rule of bee colony life cycle.

Regards, RAB
 

FenBee 

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Take a look at a link from the biobees website, Phil Chandler has written a book on "Swarming & Swarm Management" (I plan to purchase a copy myself) this may help.
 

susbees 

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Hi I am a newbee so didn't relise that was a bad thing to do, all I wanted to do is make sure that they don't swarm especially when i'm not there.

Michael
It depends what you mean by not there. Checking hives weekly in the main swarm season...and not overlooking sneakily hidden queen cells is very important. Top bar hives are fun to check...no smoke, no lifting.

I agree about not penning in the poor drones, they have a tough enough life. And Mike...is that a patent Mikeington Hive :)? We've been talking about some sort of single super system for ours.
 

Michaelf 

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So during the weekly inspections all I need to do is remove queen cells and this will prevent swarming?

Michael
 

Mike a 

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Mike...is that a patent Mikeington Hive :)? We've been talking about some sort of single super system for ours.
There is no new ideas in bee keeping, at least of any major worth.


H3 hive - Duel colony hive with joint supers. This is the modernised version picture.

http://www.beebehavior.com/two_queen_system.php This is a very interesting read of duel queen system, in the end it was deemed the system worked but had no great advantages.

http://maarec.psu.edu/CCDPpt/TwoQueenSystemFeb2009.pdf Another very interesting read.

Ultimately though the simple term - KISS says it all.

Trying to prefect a duel queen hive is one thing but what purpose will it serve. For me its about trying some thing different and the one system I've seen that caught me eye is the John Harding system on the b.i.b.b.a website. http://www.bibba.com/john_harding_method.php

It was developed for queen rearing on mass and I would love to give it a try on a small scale as I couldn't handle more than raising 8 queens at a time due to a lack of equipment.
bee-smillie
 

Polyanwood 

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So during the weekly inspections all I need to do is remove queen cells and this will prevent swarming?

Michael
Most truthful beekeepers are not able to eliminate swarming - just reduce it.

If your only trick for stopping swarming is destroying QCs you will have a lot of swarms. Other techniques, especially an artificial swarm are much better at reducing swarm risk if you have QCs.

bee-smillie
 

Michaelf 

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Brilliant thanks :) Planning to build my hive over this weekend and I have a local beekeeper who will be able to find me a swarm.

Michael
 

susbees 

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Ultimately though the simple term - KISS says it all.

Trying to prefect a duel queen hive is one thing but what purpose will it serve. For me its about trying some thing different and the one system I've seen that caught me eye is the John Harding system on the b.i.b.b.a website. http://www.bibba.com/john_harding_method.php

It was developed for queen rearing on mass and I would love to give it a try on a small scale as I couldn't handle more than raising 8 queens at a time due to a lack of equipment.
bee-smillie
Yes, I'd seen that photo before. Caught my eye because well-executed carpentry always does. And much better value than a £6000 crenelated castle-hive!

As for the queen rearing, my KISS will be bigger than yours. Seems a bit complex for a few. Be comparing notes on the smallish-scale rearing next year.
 

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