Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Top Bar Hive Split

Photos by Colin
      It was a beautiful day for a top bar hive split in our Vancouver beekeeping coop in Strathcona Park.  It was about 20 Celsius (70 fahrenheit), no wind and the birds were singing.  Anna's treatment free Kenyan Top Bar hive contained a strong, survivor stock of bees from a treatment free bee breeder that had overwintered and thrived.  Everyone joined in to assist and learn.  She was also able to harvest some honey (Top Bar Honey Harvesting).
    
Anna removing a honey frame for crush and strain extraction
     The split method we employed is moving 2 frames of brood of different ages and 2 frames of honey into the split along with the old queen.  Anna found the queen on a honey frame.  Anna also shook a few frames of bees into the new hive.  The parent hive was left with new uncapped brood and 2 capped queen cells.  We also moved the positon of the old hive over 1 foot and placed the new hive next to it in an effort to gain some foragers.  A similar method of colony division is described by Les Crowder in the video below (The split begins 16 minutes into the video). 
    

     Thanks to Colin for the great photos.  For more information on top bar beekeeping go to the Top Bar section of our Beekeepers' Library.

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