Never did this before

Discussion in 'Beekeeping 101' started by barry42001, May 19, 2012.

  1. barry42001

    barry42001 New Member

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    I have been beekeeping for a few years like 15, but in all that time, never had to chase down a virgin queen. It's been since the 12th of May when I saw the 2 capped queen cells, certainly one has hatched since then and either killed off her sister or a tiny afterswarm left. Either was surely there has been in all probability there has been no mating flights yet. I have a mated buckfast queen that left Dallas area the 18th should have it by Monday the latest. I know new queens can be runny, and all nervous figure virgin queens are the same but faster not slowed down by enlarged ovaries. The colony in question was one of the ones that were run over by a inbred in their pick-up, That queen was lost/ killed, I ordered the buckfast in spite of the bees starting their own queens, because I know the nectar flow is n early over, and by the time the hatching queen got fully mated and actually started laying eggs, over a month would have transpired before the first worker hatched out while they are steadily dying off from age. The buckfast will be laying within days even then mid June before first workers arrive on the scene. So I do have to track down the virgin queen, with such reduced numbers should not be too bad of a task. using the standard introduction cage can I immediately place the cage, candy plug in place to prevent release, at the same time I remove the virgin queen? Seems like I should be able to do it providing there is no other virgin queens hiding( since were only 2 and 1 would have either been killed off by the other, or left.) Any thoughts.
    Barry
     
  2. Americasbeekeeper

    Americasbeekeeper New Member

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    You will know within a few minutes. Set the queen cage on top of the brood frames. If the bees do more than crawl on it in curiosity and to feed the queen, quickly remove it and brush off the bees pulling at the queen. You will also get stung by bees trying to kill a second queen, while a queenless hive will let you pick up the cage and insert it between frames.
    The assistant director at the USF Botanical Gardens has watched for the past 4 years as we pass out bees every year. This year she reached in and pulled queen cages off the battery bar as I just described, without gloves, without a veil, and without getting stung. When you listen to the bees, life is easy.
     

  3. barry42001

    barry42001 New Member

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    Thanks Gary,
    wouldn't be the same if I had just removed their queen and put the cage on the top bars I mean like a matter of minutes apart?
     
  4. Americasbeekeeper

    Americasbeekeeper New Member

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    I usually go through the apiary removing queens, and as soon as I finish start placing cages as described. Opinions vary from ten minutes to 4 days before a new queen is accepted. Worker reaction is the best indicator. Mated queens with a strong pheromone are readily missed and/or accepted.
    For novices that might read this do not squish the old queen in the hive either. You are just spreading her pheromone in the hive reducing any success with a new queen.
     
  5. barry42001

    barry42001 New Member

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    caught a bit of luck, found the newly hatched queen, and caught her, installed the fresh buckfast queen I had sent for. sold the new queen to another beekeep who wants her for the propolis her bees will produce--and they do produce the propolis lol. Sad this colony has 2 frames of brood, seems like the new queen was laying eggs, found brood of all stages mostly capped. but some were small to mature larvae go figure unless my math is way off.
    Barry