Argh... more queen trouble...

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by Bens-Bees, Apr 14, 2011.

  1. Bens-Bees

    Bens-Bees New Member

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    I had hoped that I had gotten all my accidental queen killing out of my system last year... I really hoped that... but when I inspected all my hives today I found that wasn't the case.

    Pulled a frame out of one hive that had the queen on it, was looking for eggs, when off she flew... where to I have no idea... no eggs in the hive either... I'm going to wait a day before doing anything to see if maybe opening that one up prompted that young queen to go take a mating flight and return back home afterward... I'm not going to hold my breath...

    One hive from a trapout was obviously queenless with probably one worker laying drones... but overall there were still plenty of bees and resources left, so I gave them a frame of eggs just to see if they can rectify the situation.

    Another hive, last years' boomer which isn't booming this year thanks to me having to pick on it so much this year to take frames of eggs had no eggs or larva, but plenty of capped brood and two capped queen cells on the same frame... still has plenty of bees but now I'm sore that this hive will basically produce nothing from the main flow...

    Finally, a swarm that's just a few days old had no eggs, but the new bees built unbelievable amounts of queen cups... which made me worry that maybe the queen didn't make it and they are desperate to get a new one... so I gave them a frame of eggs, and added another box to the hive since the hive also seemed crowded... either they'll swarm, or they needed the eggs to make a new queen, or neither and it was a wasted excercise.

    Then I have one final hive that is really worrying me, it wasn't slimed yet but there were beetles everywhere in that hive, I killed 5 on one frame and missed 4 more... there are 4 frames of bees but the bees don't seem to pay any attention to the beetles... so even though there are beetle eater's in the hive, the bees aren't chasing the beetles into them. Maybe it's better if those genetics die out anyway... but I think to start with I'm going to move them into a better position to get more sun.
     
  2. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Hey Ben:

    Don't feel like you're the only one.
    I did a combine about a week ago, 1 with a queen + 1 1/2 frame of bees, small patch of brood - the other a hive with maybe 3 frames of bees, queenless, no brood. Checked about 3-4 days later, bees all in one area but no queen and no eggs and just some large larvae. My guess is the queenless bees did away with her. I will check again next warm day in case I missed her but my feeling is I may have been better off just having left the small queenright hive alone and just shook out the other in front of some other hives.
    Sigh, live and learn.
     

  3. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    snip...
    still has plenty of bees but now I'm sore that this hive will basically produce nothing from the main flow...

    tecumseh:
    a queenless hive will produce more honey than a queen right hive. the thinking here is quite compelling in that without putting resources into brood it is stored for later use.

    ps... the best result I have seen in regards to the shb is to give them a frame of sealed brood to boost their numbers and just a bit of feed to keep them growing and their moral high.
     
  4. Bens-Bees

    Bens-Bees New Member

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    Yeah but they never had the chance to build up since I kept stealing frames of eggs from them for trapout bait hives and to give other hives some eggs to ensure they can get queenright, so I don't have the population needed for them to produce anything now... I had been really exited about this hive's production capabilities this year because they made all kinds of honey last year... and they would have this year if I hadn't kept taking from them.

    That's a good idea... they have some food and brood of their own, and plenty of room for the queen to lay, so I think maybe what I'll do is use this as a bait hive on the trapout I'm going to start Sunday. That'll infuse the hive with a lot more bees and many that will probably be more willing to chase after the SHB and run them into the beetle eater traps... and if the trapped out bees decide to ball the queen, and raise a new one from the eggs, that'd be ok with me too.