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Help with a Cut-Out


Hello my fellow beekeeping people, about 2 months ago we found out that a swarm had moved into a wall in our old shed for about 6 weeks we tried endlessly to do a trapout to no luck so we decided to go all the way and do our first cut out, anyway all went well and i caught the queen so was pretty stoked, weirdly enough there was absolutely no honey in the hive, is this due to the young age or something else? i had a feeling that all of out trap out business made them angry enough to start to pack up shop and leave, any way i framed up the brood comb about 4 frames, not a lot, and tipped the bees out of my bee vac in to the hive along with 4 other frames with foundation, im not sure if this is a mistake but i released the queen into the new hive and she seemed to scurry right onto the brood and do her thing. Upon reading after i realised maybe i should have kept the queen in her holder to make sure they do not abscond or is this okay? If not i’ll go back and put her back in the queen holder.

  1. Should i keep the queen in a queen holder so the bees do not abscond?

  2. What exactly should i do with the rubber banded brood comb now, this hive is not big enough to add another boxwith a queen excluder so should i just leave it? Also with the frames up elastic band comb, will the bees just fill out the frame over time or should I remove it as soon as the brood is mostly gone?

Any other tips would be great

Am in in Australia by the way so spring has just passed which is why its odd for there to be no honey?

Thanks a lot for reading


Well done on catching the queen & rubber banding the brood. The colony & queen will stay with the brood, as long as it’s in good nick. Wait for the colony to build up before thinking about a second super. The honey they gathered would most likely have been put to use in building comb & raising brood. A honey dearth would also contribute to no honey stores. It would be a good idea to feed them to help them through the rebuilding stage. I would slowly cycle those frames out above the QX, once the colony has reached that stage.

With the correct information, a trap-out is quite easy & works every time.


Thanks a lot jeff, would it be bad if I was to open it up and check on them or would you suggest just leaving them for a while?




No I don’t think you’d do any harm by taking a look in. What I aim for is for the bees to build nice straight comb on fresh foundation. So just make sure the rubber banded comb doesn’t influence crooked comb, which it can do if it’s not straight.

Because I have a lot of hives, including some resource hives, I’d give them fresh straight brood from a resource hive, then place the rubber banded comb above a QX of another hive. That way the brood will emerge when ready, then the bees will fill the frame with honey. After I extract the honey, then I can decide whether to reuse it for honey, or cut it out & start again with fresh foundation.


@JeffH has given you sound and well experienced advise, the only addition I would make is to maybe feed the bees for a couple of weeks with a 50/50 white sugar and water mix or a frame of honey from one of your hives. Making all that comb in a short time takes a lot of honey and possibly leaving the colony short.
A welcome to the forum and congratulations your first cut-out.
Cheers Isaac


I assume you used funnel shaped screen for trap out. The foraging bees could not get back in or it took them time to figure out how to get in. This will affect honey production. Your trap out was working. You were starving them out. On the cut outs I have done about 30% or more end up absconding. I now charge a full days pay to do a cut out. The place you did cut out would be a good place for swarm box or 2 in your swarm season. I am putting out 20 swarm boxes starting March 1st. Hope to catch 30 to 40 swarms. Our swarm season last about 90 day. Zone 9 USA