Spring Inspection Post #3
These pictures are from a colony I inspected last weekend.
There located in Ventura County, California. I found about a dozen swarm cells in it. -- Time to make splits?
I took one of the cells and installed it in another of my colonies
It looks like that queen bought the farm.
That’s a temporary solution as I’m ordering queens for the splits and to replace the queens of unknown origin.
The orange trees and avocado are coming into bloom so time’s short.
Last edited by Jeff Gratton; 03-29-2007 at 01:19 PM.
Why would you replace a new queen? I have always heard that a superseeded queen was the best queen to have.
Because I live in Africa
Southern California is AHB country. I would love to be able to use standard practices to re-queen my hives, but because of the AHB problem I need to be careful of the genetic stock of my colonies. Check out this link for information on the hybridization of feral colonies in the U.S. http://www.genetics.org/cgi/content/full/170/4/1653. I currently have five colonies that have come from a variety of sources. The first colony was from a cutout were the queen was lost and replaced with an artificially inseminated queen from Olivarez Honey Bees. This was late in the season and I took what I could get for that time of year. She lasted the winter and kept the colony going but, after inspection last week she was not there, no broad, no new eggs (This was the colony I placed the queen cell into). Two other colonies were given to me by another bee keeper last fall. The first was on his property and under his management so I thought no worries; however, when I went to pick it up there had been a battle, lots of dead bees (Thousands) on the ground in front of the hive. This could be a takeover from an AHB swarm, unknown and not much I could do about it in October. The second was a three deep (Large Productive Colony) located in an avocado grove, left as a swarm trap which worked. This colony is AHB for sure, very hot and hard to deal with. This was early winter so I treated them with Apiguard, feed them, and let them be. The last two are from cutouts I did about a month ago; these were very gentle and well behaved bees considering I yanked them from a wall. I’m going to split all these colonies as they build and replace any hot bees with UHB. If there calm and easy they live, if hot they die.
Ok, AHB problems make sense. I am in an area where we really do not have to worry about it yet!!