Many have asked how to start a MUB or Mini Urban Beehive if they don’t have any mini frames with eggs. While starting a mini with mini frames with eggs, young larvae, and nurse bees is one of our favorite methods, it is not the only way to do so.
If you have a strong active Langstroth deep colony of bees, or a willing friend with such a colony, you can:
- Take an empty frame and place seed wax or starter wax as shown in the first images below.
- Place the empty frame in between two frames where brood (babies) are in a strong colony. This is done during a nectar flow, or time of brooding, or while feeding them sugar water. During this time they produce wax and will be willing to draw (build) the new comb.
- Leave for 3-7 days. Let the bees build and the queen lay eggs. These frames were placed into a hive 5pm Friday and by 9am Tuesday they were ready.
- Once there is drawn comb with eggs, remove a portion of the comb with eggs and press it or secure it with rubber bands to the mini frames.
- Put the mini frames into a queenless hive in the area of the hive with the most bees.
- In 3-5 days there will be queen cells. If there are no queen cells, look for eggs or repeat the process. If there are eggs they may have a queen or it may have laying workers.