Nucleus Colonies (Nucs)
These are starter colonies consisting of four or five frames with a laying Queen. Usually, they are made up of two or three frames of capped brood, a frame of honey and pollen, and may have a frame for the Queen to lay eggs in.
If you are buying a nucleus colony, get it from a reputable dealer, someone who maintains a disease-free apiary and good quality stock. Often this person will have you bring your equipment to their establishment. Then they will put in the frames of brood and install a new Queen. They will then usually wait a week or two to make sure the Queen is laying and everything looks right. You will then receive a call to come and get your colony. The hive entrance will be sealed and top ventilation (screened) will be provided. Take your bees to your chosen location and set the hive in place. Remove the entrance seal and walk away. Your bees will be excited from the trip movement and will usually come rushing out. Once they have settled down, put your entrance reducer in place allowing a small opening for access and for guarding.