spotty brood pattern
i had a nuc that i recently transferred into a ten frame deep to make more room. all the frames were honey bound and the queen wasn't laying yet when i did the transfer about three weeks ago. today i was looking into this hive to see what kind of brood pattern this queen was laying. it was pretty spotty. i found the queen and watched her for awhile. she would look into a cell, then another, then another, then she laid an egg in that cell. i'm thinking maybe since the four frames that were drawn were full of nectar, honey , and pollen, that maybe she only had a limited number of cells to lay in starting out, which caused the spotty pattern i observed or maybe she's just a dud. how long should i give this queen before i make my decision to pinch her or not. two, three brood cycles, or longer. i'd like to here from those who breed and mate their own queens. i was thinking of letting her go until autumn then combining this hive with another if the pattern looks the same. any thoughts?
I wouldn't waste more than 3 weeks. A decent queen will take that hive into winter as a strong winterable hive, whereas your weak queen will force you to combine;).
Hey WV you might want to check to see if you have a heavy mite count that will cause the brood to be spotty also.
well, i didn't pinch this queen out and decided to give her until today to get things right, and i'm glad i did. if she was still doing the same thing she would have been pinched and the deep would of been combined with another hive. i believe that since the nuc got honey bound while the bees were waiting for the queen to emerge, mate, and start laying, that she just didn't have enough room starting out. now she is a deep with a shallow of goldenrod on top. the queen is still laying eggs and the pattern is much better. as i watched there were quite a few bees emerging on the frame in the picture. no signs of mites either.
I have the same issues. When queen rearing, I will check a matingn ucs and either see a virigin or mated queen. It is hard to pinch them and you WANT to give them some time and a second chance. Yikes!
Glad you didnt pinch her. Nice pic too!
nice picture and a nice brood pattern.
I find that if you are feeding a new hive/nuc even a bit that on many occasions by the time the queen emerges and then does a few mating flights that the bees have stuffed enough feed into the center of the nest and there are few places for her to lay.
once the rearing of brood has begun most of the feed is quite quickly consumed.