How to combine two hives with bee colonies?
Each experienced beekeeper knows how to unite bee families and, accordingly, strengthen them. This article provides a detailed description of this procedure, why, how and when to carry it out.
Why is the union of bee colonies done?
First of all, the connection of bee colonies is carried out in order to strengthen the swarm, which can independently provide itself with food, create the necessary conditions for reproduction and transfer the winter with minimal losses. Also, such events guarantee the production of large quantities of honey.
How and when is it best to combine bee colonies?
Before wintering, in September-November they do not recommend uniting families. The event is held in early spring, after the first flyby. In the presence of a bezel-free swarm, no preliminary procedures are carried out. Frames with the uterus are transferred to another hive, where there is none. After the start of the brood, methods are used to give insects a single smell.
Important! Weak families always join the strong, also uterine-free to the uterine.
Ways to give bees one smell
Each swarm has its own smell, so before you connect the two families, you need to pay attention to this moment.
The method of spraying bees with odorous composition
According to this method, honeycombs and bees are treated with sugar syrup with the addition of odorous substances. This can be a decoction of peppermint, anise or onion, previously sliced and laid out at the bottom of the hive.
After the swarms are connected, insects begin to actively lick the substance from the surface and each other, thereby acquiring a new common smell. Thus, aggression is reduced and the death of a large number of individuals is excluded. The procedure is carried out in the evening, after an active flight.
Newspaper or mesh screen
The essence of the method is the separation of the so-called partition of the hive buildings, on which different families are located. Numerous punctures with a diameter of 1 mm are made on a sheet of paper for air circulation. It is laid on the lower nest, frames with another family are placed on top.
After a few days, the bees start to smell the same, gnaw through the paper and combine. Instead of parchment, you can use a partition from a grid or plywood, but you will need to remove it yourself. When using sun loungers, the frames to be attached are wrapped with a newspaper so that there is no passage and placed in the desired hive.
Video: Bee Families Eating
When merging families, experienced beekeepers recommend:
- weak swarm to hook to strong;
- place families in a new hive that is odorless, so unification will happen more peacefully;
- in the new family leave only one uterus, which is necessary at the time of adaptation, cover with a uterine cap;
- carry out the procedure in warm and dry weather from 6 to 8 pm;
- Do not combine different breeds.
Did you know? Bees have poor eyesight and do not distinguish objects located at a distance of more than 1.5 m, they are guided only by smells.
Breeding bees is quite painstaking work with a lot of nuances. Above are a number of recommendations regarding family reunification, the implementation of which guarantees the safety of insects, as well as the production of large quantities of honey.