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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Wallkill, New York, USA
    Posts
    2

    Post

    I removed the queen, 1/3 of the bees and most of the young brood from a hive. 6 hours later introducing 18 grafted queen cups. 4 days later (today) I went in to check the cells and found 7 of 18 had been cared for and capped (not my best percentage but not bad for my 3rd time). Also to my surprise, I found 3 natural queen cups with an egg in each.
    I KNOW there isn't a queen in the hive.
    There's no other sign of a queen (no other eggs).
    Can a worker do this in such a short period of time (4 days) without a queen?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, United States
    Posts
    397

    Post

    Hi

    you wrote:

    I removed the queen, 1/3 of the bees and most of the young brood from a hive. 6 hours later introducing 18 grafted queen cups. 4 days later (today) I went in to check the cells and found 7 of 18 had been cared for and capped (not my best percentage but not bad for my 3rd time). Also to my surprise, I found 3 natural queen cups with an egg in each.
    I KNOW there isn't a queen in the hive.
    There's no other sign of a queen (no other eggs).
    Can a worker do this in such a short period of time (4 days) without a queen?

    Reply:
    Not normally!

    But bees have been written about in literature over the years for stealing eggs to raise a queen. Just as they can carry debre out of a colony, they are equiped to carry in certain things by the shape of their mouth parts, and curved jaws can hook around eggs.

    But outside of beekeepers writing about it, through observations, I don't think it has ever been seriously doucmented nor looked for.

    Now as for laying workers! The scenario described does not fit!

    Regards

    Dee A. Lusby


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