Supersedure cells in the middle of my drone comb frame

Discussion in 'Beekeeping 101' started by brendantm130, Jul 10, 2010.

  1. brendantm130

    brendantm130 New Member

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    I have Supersedure cells in the middle of my drone comb frame. I pulled the frame to remove the capped drones and found three capped queen cells in the middle. My questions are, do I split or let them supersede? It is a new hive from a NUC, they are doing great. Two deeps, 9-10 frames of brood with good brood patterns. One med super mostly drawn, 3-4 filled. My other question is about the drones. If I leave them will I get a mite explosion? I removed the drone comb from my other hive, uncapped it and nocked out the drones. In the mess I saw about 20 mites. It was hard to get a good count in all the mess. (Then my chickens got it.)

    The other side of the frame is completely filled.

    [attachment=1:3tytwuh9]IMG_5090.jpg[/attachment:3tytwuh9]

    [attachment=0:3tytwuh9]IMG_5091.jpg[/attachment:3tytwuh9]
     

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  2. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    IMO I would leave them until they hatch and let the hive sort it out they know more about whats going on in the hive than we will ever know. As for drones depending on when they was capped but the queens should emerge before the drones hatch.
     

  3. barry42001

    barry42001 New Member

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    you can see worker sized cells in the mix near the queen cells. the frame appears to be fairly newly drawn comb, did you see anything wrong with the existing queen? poor brood pattern something? My personal preference would be to get the strain of be queen I wanted rather then let the bees raise thier own as superscedrue queens are seldom the best quality to begin with, as they are being raised under " emergency situation ", and not because of a overabundance of resources and over populatuion of the colony with regards to nesting cavity. That would be my personal preference.
    Barry
     
  4. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    Barry I agree with you on the replacing a bad queen. I was thinking more in the direction of an ailing older queen. The original post said the queen had a good brood pattern. I was wondering if the guy making the nucs may have used the old queen from the donor hive instead of a new one in the nuc. The old queen while laying good now is beginning to lose her ability to produce queen pheromones to let the hive know she is alive and well.
     
  5. brendantm130

    brendantm130 New Member

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    Thanks for the thoughts. I don't know if it is an old queen instead of a new one, but I believe he uses new ones. These are supposed to be over wintered NUCs with new queens, and he seemed to be a good guy, so thats what I think I got. But even so, I guess I don't know for sure. Maybe I'll get a new queen from him instead of letting them raise their own. How would I go about making them think they don't have a queen? I didn't see one when I had it open last, but I also didn't look in the bottom box at all. I did look at all the frames in the top. I'll take a few shots of the brood pattern, maybe what I think is good isn't. I only have two hives to compare.

    The drone frame is newly drawn, and not quite completely. I was gone for two weeks and just opened the hive to see how it was doing.
     
  6. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    first off open the hive and look for signs of a queen. Usually the bees will be crawling around quick on the top bars and may be iritated. then start looking for eggs and new larva. if there is no eggs and the emergency cells are still capped look for a queen if you cant find one make sure you cut the cells out and get them all. introduce the new queen in a queen cage they will release her in a few days
     
  7. barry42001

    barry42001 New Member

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    After looking a bit closer at the pictures you have provided, noticed a rather strange discoloring of the one supercedure cell, not certian what it it just looks strange. I would have a spray bottle of sugar syrup standing by and spray the introductioon cage with it, the colony itself, just to try to ensure they stay calm while you introduce the queen cage. RR has it right about destroying the queen cells, proir to one hatching, but have a young, queen available to immediately intsall.
    Barry
     
  8. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Plastic foundation

    Large drone foundation

    horizontal "queen?" cells

    I'm just not fully convinced that they are queens.

    Maybe just abnormal drone cells because of the foundation??
     
  9. barry42001

    barry42001 New Member

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    looks like the bees did a bit of remodeling with the foundation, modifying the actual drone cells , reshaping as they wished. clearly can see what appears to be normal worker cell cups near what I believe to be queen cells, looks like the bees actually stripped out the wax from the plastic in patches leaving only plastic impressions, that they would have waxed over to make what they want.
     
  10. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    if you look at the third pic it looks like there is 3 queen cups along with the cells. I dont know what the discoloration is. But I think they are what i would use as a poor example of what a queen cell should look like.
     
  11. brendantm130

    brendantm130 New Member

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    I looked again today, and those are more queen cups, and are now more developed. I searched harder, looked in the bottom box, and couldn't find the queen. I do have a slatted rack below that with a ton of bees below it, so maybe she retreated there. In the bottom I did find larva, but couldn't see and eggs. It was cloudy, and can't say I've ever seen eggs, so maybe they were there. Also, on many of the frames there were empty queen cups, 4-6 per frame. I'll post some pictures later. Back to the world cup.
     
  12. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    You are running the slatted rack below the bottom brood box right. I still think you may have an old queen. Im not seeing something here cause something just isnt making since to me. It sounds like you have a strong hive with a good laying queen. As mentioned in the original post. If your not seeing eggs she may have been injured or squished during an inspection. Is there comb built below the slatted rack she may be down there leading the few bees in the top deep to believe they are queenless when they are not. Thus making emerrgency cells when they are not actually queenless
     
  13. brendantm130

    brendantm130 New Member

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    Here are some pictures of brood from today. All from different frames.

    The least brood.
    [attachment=0:23l0irtj]IMG_5119.jpg[/attachment:23l0irtj]

    The most brood.
    [attachment=1:23l0irtj]IMG_5118.jpg[/attachment:23l0irtj]
    [attachment=2:23l0irtj]IMG_5117.jpg[/attachment:23l0irtj]
    [attachment=3:23l0irtj]IMG_5116.jpg[/attachment:23l0irtj]
    [attachment=4:23l0irtj]IMG_5115.jpg[/attachment:23l0irtj]

    There are 11 frames all told with brood in them.
     

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  14. alleyyooper

    alleyyooper New Member

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    Queen cells drone comb with three cells showing.
    That discoloring is what I look for to get an Idea of how soon the cells will hatch when I don't have a clue when they were started. I like to call it NIPPLE pink. If you listen some times you will hear the queen inside the cell chewing to open the hatch.

    I belive they are real queen cells and for some reason they want to supersced the old queen or she is already gone.

    :mrgreen: Al
     
  15. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    Alley Im seeing the same thing. But what is puzzling is the brood pattern looks good. Im thinking it either an old queen was used to make the nuc and its phermones are starting to fail. The queen sounds like is still there since there is young larva. Im wondering if there is comb built below the slatted rack and the queen moved down in there from the top leading the bees in the top to think they was queenless
     
  16. brendantm130

    brendantm130 New Member

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    I'm going to see if I can look under the slatted rack tomorrow. I'm not sure the queen cells survived my shacking off of the nurse bees when I pulled the frame. For some reason I didn't see them even though I was looking for the queen before I did it. So far (being my first year) it's all a learning process.
     
  17. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    if they wasnt there im betting they hatched and you have a virgin queen unless you was violantly shaking the bees off the frame
     
  18. alleyyooper

    alleyyooper New Member

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    I believe if there were a virgin queen in the hive onje queen cell would show a nice opening at the bottom and the rest may be intact but have a small hole where the emerging queen stung the ones still inthe cells. Or the workers would be tearing them down.

    :mrgreen: Al
     
  19. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    thats what im thinking they have tore them down. Them gals can be quick at house cleaning. Just wish my kids had the same motivation
     
  20. brendantm130

    brendantm130 New Member

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    So I took some more pictures today of the queen cells. One is open, and two more cells are almost capped. two other than the three. now there are five. I looked into the uncapped, and there are larva.

    [attachment=3:gn2w3fad]IMG_5123.jpg[/attachment:gn2w3fad]

    [attachment=2:gn2w3fad]IMG_5122.jpg[/attachment:gn2w3fad]

    [attachment=1:gn2w3fad]IMG_5121.jpg[/attachment:gn2w3fad]

    Is this what it looks like after a queen emerges?
    [attachment=0:gn2w3fad]IMG_5121-2.jpg[/attachment:gn2w3fad]
     

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