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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hampton, VA, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default Two Queens! What now?

    So, I did a hive inspection today and found the queen readily. The hive looked strong and growing. When I looked at my pictures later it looked like I had another queen! Please take a look at my blog and let me know what you think.

    So, if I do have two queens is that good or bad? Will one of them be thinking swarm? Will the workers kill one? Will they just produce twice as many brood?
    ??

    Thanks ahead of time
    Newbee Rich
    Antcliff Farms

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Glenmoore, PA
    Posts
    97

    Default

    Looks like 2 queens, if on different frames as you said. Usually if they are going to swarm, the old queen leaves before the new one hatches. I'd let them be, and hope they both lay lots of eggs before they find each other and have a fight.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Troupsburg, NY
    Posts
    4,082

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by rantcliff View Post
    So, I did a hive inspection today and found the queen readily. The hive looked strong and growing. When I looked at my pictures later it looked like I had another queen! Please take a look at my blog and let me know what you think.

    So, if I do have two queens is that good or bad? Will one of them be thinking swarm? Will the workers kill one? Will they just produce twice as many brood?
    ??

    Thanks ahead of time
    If it is indeed two queens, it would be a mother/daughter set, which is common. Don't count on twice as much brood. Once there is a younger queen, the nurse bees will pay her more attention, and the older one will just disappear at some point.
    "I reject your reality, and substitute my own." Adam Savage

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Suffolk, VA
    Posts
    2,277

    Default

    I concur with Peggjam that it is not uncommon, particularly in the spring, to see two queens. It doesn't seem that they are planning to swam, so I'd leave them alone. Give them plenty of room to expand (which it seems like you've done) and check back in a week or so to evaluate their progress. Now, if you had more hive resources, i.e., a few spare frames of bees you could take one of the queens and setup a nuc. In such cases, its nice to know which queen is the youngest, which is why I try to keep my queens marked.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Pepperell, MA.
    Posts
    3,671

    Default

    I'd leave them alone and let nature take her course.
    "My wife always wanted girls. Just not thousands and thousands of them......"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Princeton, West Virginia
    Posts
    478

    Default Thoughts and questions

    Mark the queen with a queen marking pen. Then if you find another one mark it with last years color that way you can tell the difference when you see them.

    Was there a brood pattern that continued on all frames between the 2 frames? Is there signs of swarm preparation? Is it too early to make a split in your area?

    If you make a split consider placing one of the queens and a couple frames of brood in a new box and place this box where the old hive is. Then move the box with most of the old hive a few feet away. As the field bees leave the old hive on flights they will return to what was the old location. This builds up the weeker hive fast. I have had good success using this method and end up with 2 strong hives and honey production from both.
    What I Smoke has a Sting to it

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