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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Sloansville, NY, USA
    Posts
    1

    Post

    Perhaps this question should be in beekeeping 101; I will move it there if advised. I am a new beekeeper, upstate NY, started first hive last spring (Carniolans). Last week I found some honey dripped into a pan below screened bottom board, and while trying to figure out what problem I had if any, I raked the dead bees out bottom of hive on a mild day. I found a few bees among the dead that looked like they might be queens to me, one in particular had an abdomen that extended noticably lower than her wingtips. Some others had longer abdomens but not as long. I made scans of these, side by side, with a regular worker for comparison.
    Could someone refer me to a source for queen identification?
    If there are a few queens among the dead, would this be normal? The hive was raked out also in October, before it was wrapped for the winter. Any pointers would be appreciated.
    Donna Walker, Schoharie County, NY

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Round Top, New York - Northern Catskill Mtns.
    Posts
    1,895

    Post

    Donna, If more than one of these bees looked like they could have been queens, than they are simply workers of different sizies.
    The odds of having more than one queen in a hive, and they all die is slim to none.
    If you have pictures you could email them, or bring them to a meeting.
    There are several people from Schoharie County in the Catskill Mtn Beekeepers- www.catskillbees.org/
    Meetings are in Greene County at the Acra Community Center on Old Rte 23. You can get there coming east on Rt 23 or Rte 145.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,212

    Post

    Take a look at the bottom of my web page and you can see several pictures of the same queen. You can't mistake her for a worker. There is little resemblance.

    http://incolor.inetnebr.com/bush/bush_bees.htm

    Queens are not always totally solid, but they are seldom if ever striped the way a worker is striped.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Location
    Birmingham, West Midlands, UK
    Posts
    751

    Post

    This comes with practice, meanwhile don't panic. Eggs hatch in three days, so look for them. If there are eggs, you've had a viable queen in the hive in the last three days, and she's unlikely to have died in that time. Meanwhile, practice spotting them. I found it incredibly hard at first, but eventually I got my eye in. Everybody does. Don't stop looking the moment you see a queen; multiple queen hives are a reality in some strains, and its a great convenience when you need a queen!
    RSBrenchley@aol.com
    Birmingham UK

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Drums, PA, USA
    Posts
    331

    Post

    Did you purchase a marked queen?

    Queens are different looking than workers and drones. The abdomin will be about 1/3 longer than a workers, and the dot will stand out.

    Although I have not looked at MB's website, but it would be wise for you to look at it. Sooner or later, you will want to find your quuen in the colony, and it helps if you know what you are looking for. I don't mean to sound sarcastic, but until you actually see one in her natural surroundings, it can be hard to tell.
    Dale Richards<br />Dal-Col Apiaries<br />

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    3,401

    Post

    The easy way to ID a queen is to look at the
    OTHER bees around it. A queen will have a goodly
    number of bees around, and they will all be facing
    inwards, towards the queen. "Attendants".

    A non-queen will wander about alone, without
    other bees paying much attention to it.

    I never look for the queen itself, I look for
    the "court" around the queen.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,212

    Post

    If you want to see the "court" look at the pictures on my web site and you'll see the bees around the queen ACT like she's the queen.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

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