The Nucs
The nus are made up either in standard 5 frames nuc boxes or if required in normal brood boxes which are divided into 2 or 3 bee proof sections.
The Jenter plugs with the 5 queen cells in cell cages ready to go into the nucs
Jenter plugs over queen cells
bees at nuc entrance
Bees busy at the nuc entrance

and guard bees below
Making up the nucs

On the 12th day 5 three frame nucs were made up.

Each nuc contained one frame of mature brood and the accompanying nurse bees, sandwiched between two frames of stores and two frames of foundation. The nuc was placed on top of the hive which eventually would be requeened and from which the sealed brood frame and nurse bees were taken. The nucs were made up in the evening so that by the next day each nuc had acquired its own identity and was readily to accept a queen cell (after 24 hours or so) without danger of the cell being attacked or pulled down.

On the 14th day the Jenter plug holding the queen cell was suspended adjacent to the brood frame using a plastic adaptor. The queen expected to emerge two days later.

The mature brood meanwhile is emerging and leaving behind empty cells for the new queen to lay up. The newly emerged bees provide the young bees that attend the queen and her new brood.

Apart from feeding, the nucs were now left alone for 3 weeks before the first examination. If the operation is successful then the mated queen can be found and marked, and brood will be see to be present.

The small colonies were now left for the rest of the season to build up more frames being added as required.
On making up the nucs it is essential that the queen is not transferred with the nurse bees by mistake. If the queen cannot be seen, then the following procedure can be followed:
On transferring the frames from the main body brush off all the bees.
Place the frames in a new brood body over a queen excluder over the main colony and leave for 30 minutes.
Nurse bees will come up to cover the brood after which the frames can be removed and placed in the nuc.
Next page: The Drones
guard bees at nuc entrance
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