Making more hives – April

This post will be updated once the queens that I am making are mated. What does that mean? Keep reading to figure out, If you are seeing this I having gotten to updating or there is not update yet.

April is a time when the bees are ramping up production and growing their population (within the hive). If let alone they will swarm towards the end of April/ beginning of May. May, June and July they will be making honey. A beekeeper wants to prevent swarming because than those will be bees lost into the trees! The more bees that stay in the hive the better. One-way HarBee is doing this is splitting the hives and making nucleus colonies.

Th red plastic and peanut looking thing in the center of the frame, That is the queen cell.

Splitting is done by removing frames of brood and placing a queen cell onto the frame putting both into a different box. Queen cells can be made or purchased (how that is done is beyond the scope of this post). So now, you have just made a 2nd hive and ‘weakened’ the strong hive that would have otherwise swarmed.  The queen will emerge in 1 or 2 days and mate. Once mated she will start laying eggs and now you have 2 hive. It is kind of like “artificial swarming”. This split can be used to boost a colony that is weak later this year or it can be sold.

It has also bees an early swarm season in New Jersey. I have already caught my first swarm of the year In Oradell. This is a swarm from someone else’s bees. You can never 100% stop the tendency to swarm, you can only reduce it. Swarm management is importation but swarm control can never be done.


  • Swarm – Swarming is when half the bees leave the hive, with the old queen, to find a new place to take up shelter and continue a new colony. This leaves a new queen and the other half to continue the existing colony.
  • Brood – Brood is referring to bees in the egg, larva and capped pupa stages of the bee’s life cycle. If you were to compare that to a butterfly it would be egg – caterpillar (the larva) – and cocoon stage (pupa stage). The pupa stage is also referred to as “capped brood

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