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I've been keeping this blog for all of my beekeeping years and I am beginning my 19th year of beekeeping in April 2024. Now there are more than 1300 posts on this blog. Please use the search bar below to search the blog for other posts on a subject in which you are interested. You can also click on the "label" at the end of a post and all posts with that label will show up. At the very bottom of this page is a list of all the labels I've used.

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I began this blog to chronicle my beekeeping experiences. I have read lots of beekeeping books, but nothing takes the place of either hands-on experience with an experienced beekeeper or good pictures of the process. I want people to have a clearer picture of what to expect in their beekeeping so I post pictures and write about my beekeeping saga here.Master Beekeeper Enjoy with me as I learn and grow as a beekeeper.

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Thursday, August 20, 2009

Downsizing When the Economy is Bad!

So with neither hive thriving at Blue Heron, I killed one queen, put the other in a nuc, and combined the two hives there. I left this bag of sugar syrup on top of the frames in an almost empty third box. The bees were on it right away.

I put bungee cords around the nuc with the old frame and a split's worth of bees. I didn't block the entrance, figuring that home was only a short drive away and the girls would probably make the trip inside the nuc. Sure enough, they traveled inside the nuc and there were only about 6 bees in the car when I arrived at home.

As I said in an earlier post, when I found the queen, the frame on which she was walking had an almost perfect queen cell on it. The cell was a dark peanut, perfectly shaped and looking ripe for an emerging queen. I assume the bees knew they needed a new queen and made one. When she emerges, I guess one of them will be killed.

I brought the nuc home to my deck apiary. I put it beside the box they had lived in at Blue Heron. I thought it might make them comfortable and reminded of home. If a new queen emerges and this hive does well, I might move it to the larger hive box and keep it over the winter.

We'll see what happens. If their economy gets better, maybe they can move into more upscale housing again!

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  1. Look at all that wonderful smoker fuel lying on your hive deck! :-)


  2. Every once in a long while I get out a broom and gather it into a bucket!

  3. I've read that emergency queen cells aren't so big but when the bees have more time to plan they make a nice big cell. Let's hope she's a lovely queen.


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