Checking for new queens

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by PerryBee, Jun 3, 2011.

  1. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    I did the first 2 "walk-away" splits on May 23rd. Actually they weren't really splits, they were strong hives that I didn't want to swarm so I grabbed the queens and some brood and made up 5 frame nucs. How soon would one go into the queenless hives to see if they have been succesful in raising new queens? I have held off to date (even though I was dying to take a peek) thinking that the less they were disturbed the better.
    Given that the 24th of May should be day "4" and adding 12 days till hatching (that would make it around Sunday the 5th).
    I don't want to go in now for fear of damaging any cells that have been raised. Does a week or maybe 10 days after emergence sound reasonable? That should not interfere with mating flights (weather permitting) and may even the discovery of eggs?
    Sometime around mid to late June, or is that waiting too long in case they had a problem rearing a new queen?
     
  2. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    i usually will check in 3 or 4 days for queen cells if you are careful the bees shouldnt have them glued down super tight in the nuc box yet. you should be able to pull the frame to look and see if they produced a queen cell. I usually remove the first frame nearest the side of the hive then slide the others over as I check. once I see what im looking for I close up the hive and usually wait about 3 weeks to come back and check for eggs.
     

  3. Tia

    Tia New Member

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    I don't know, riverrat, even removing a frame, I've managed to mess up a queen cell when sliding the frames apart because sometimes they're attached to both frames and they get pulled apart in the sliding. So, since all my nucs have attached bottom boards, I like to use a 10-frame box with a division board in the center, making it into side-by-side nucs. Then I can just upend the box and look from the bottom up for queen cells without touching the frames. It may be just my clumsiness, but this seems to work best for me.
     
  4. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    I agree with the rat. I would check today, before the cells emerge. Then if you have cells, fine. If not, you can make adjustments two weeks sooner than otherwise.
     
  5. rast

    rast New Member

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    I usually check at about a week on walkaway's. I just caught one that failed to produce, made a couple of cups is all.
     
  6. Eddy Honey

    Eddy Honey New Member

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    The waiting is tough isn't it? I would wait until you think larvae is present. I haven't been able to spot eggs yet but larvae is much easier.

    We had a virgin queen 7 days ago today and I'm going to wait awhile before I open the hive to look. Probably Friday.
     
  7. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    it will take from 18 to 20 days from the time she hatched out until you will see eggs.
     
  8. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    Disturbing a hive in the process of making queen cells is really not such a huge deal. Disturbance should be left to a minimum at the point you have a virgin queen in the box who is in some way preparing to mate or preparing to lay. Excessive manipulation at that point can get a young virgin queen murdered for no good reason.

    If you fear you may destroy cells by pulling frames them perhaps consider just looking up thru the bottom of the hive body and looking for cells. Quite often they are easy to see from the bottom up and you really need not remove the frames.

    Time line.... About two days shy of one month you should see the evidence of a newly mated queen (12 days in the cell plus 2 weeks for maturation and mating). Add another 5 or 6 days to get to larvae in numbers and perhaps another week to make certain the larvae are not all drones.