Bees Are Coming

By | March 7, 2011

Today I ordered an early package, earlier than I ever thought I could get bees. I have four others also on order, one for late April, the three others mid-May. Had I known packages would be around this early I’d have ordered them all from this one source.

I’ll be picking up the early package on March 27th, a mere 3 weeks away. My plan right now for this package is to create two nucs in order to requeen the later packages. I’ll start this early package in a two store nuc filled with comb. I want the package to build up quickly enough so that I can split it around the end of April/beginning of May into two single nucs. One will clearly be queenless and will be forced to raise a new queen, and at that point I’ll determine if I’m intrepid enough to pinch the original queen to make them both queenless. By the end of May I should have at least one locally mated, laying queen, possibly two. Those queens will requeen 1-2 of the four packages. The nucs will then raise another set of queens for the end of June, and those will be put into the remaining packages. The nucs will then raise yet another set for the end of July, and by this time, if any original queens remain they will be replaced. The nucs will then be managed as queenright until fall when I’ll pinch the queen in the weaker one and combine it with the weakest hive, and either do the same with the second or try to overwinter the nuc, I’m not yet sure what I’ll do there. Of course these are happy-path plans that may or may not work out at all.

I’m very excited to be getting bees this early. This will probably make April fly along, and I’ll need to be diligent about getting the remaining covers and stands built for the next influx of flying wonders.

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