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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Alamo, TN (God's Country)
    Posts
    14

    Default 4 new queens to arrive Friday or Saturday. Marking, Introduction, Short term Storage?

    I have four new queens that are supposed to ship tomorrow from Mikasa Honey Farms. I have a couple of questions.

    The queens are supposed to ship in plastic cages with attendants, I have read that you need to remove the attendants before introducing the queen. First, is this true? Second, does anyone have any advice on how to do it,(get the workers out without losing/killing/maiming the queen)? This also is my biggest concern with marking - getting the queen out of and back into the shipping/introduction cage without injury.

    I know that introduction is a subject theat whole books could be written about. My general plan was to make my splits (new hives queenless) 1-3 days before introduction, introducing the queen in the shipping cage for 3 days or with candy plug intact. The only other queens I have installed came with 3lb packages in wood/wire shipping cages, with candy plugs. Does anyone know how to make thier own "candy" for intro cages?

    Lastly, I am going to have to store the queens until Saturday whether they get here on Thursday or Saturday morning, whats the best way to keep them for 2 days max.? They will be in the mail for 2-3 days getting here if that makes a difference.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    College Station, Texas
    Posts
    6,973

    Default

    daniel bailey writes:
    The queens are supposed to ship in plastic cages with attendants, I have read that you need to remove the attendants before introducing the queen.

    tecumseh remarks:
    I am unfamilar with the plastic cage... is this a plastic version of the wood introduction cage? Some people like to remove the attendants since it is suggested that this helps in acceptance. I don't do this myself. If I needed to mark the queen I would do this in a small closed room with good light... pull the uncandied end of the introduction cage and the workers will walk out fairly quickly (moving towards the light), but the queen may seem a bit shy about leaving so you have to wait and it is best (easiest) to catch her while she is just existing the introduction cage.

    daniel bailey writes:
    Does anyone know how to make thier own "candy" for intro cages?

    tecumseh writes:
    there are several formulas... the basic idea is to invert sugar and add powdered sugar until it is of frosting consistance. a lot of times when I am reusing introduction cages here I use those small marshmellows.

    then daniel writes:
    Lastly, I am going to have to store the queens until Saturday whether they get here on Thursday or Saturday morning, whats the best way to keep them for 2 days max.? They will be in the mail for 2-3 days getting here if that makes a difference.

    tecumseh replies:
    in storing queens for a signicant time a queen bank is best (an excluder over a stong hive with an empty shell to hold the queens-screen face up). you likely don't need to do this... simply place the queens in a cool dark spot. they will have plenty of candy (food) but you will need to add a bit of water to the cages on a regular bases (put one or two drops of water on the uncandied end of the introduction cage several time per day).

    from what you have written, water would be my primary concern.

    good luck...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,217

    Default

    >The queens are supposed to ship in plastic cages with attendants, I have read that you need to remove the attendants before introducing the queen. First, is this true?

    I've introduced many without removing the attendants. But removing them will improve success.

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesfaqs.htm#requeening

    A push in cage will improve success even more:

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesfaqs.htm#pushincage

    > Second, does anyone have any advice on how to do it,(get the workers out without losing/killing/maiming the queen)?

    The easiest is to buy a queen muff. Since you probably won't have one, that leaves the bathroom window. The queen and the attendants will fly to the light (the window) if the doors are closed you have a limited area that the queen can escape to and some second chances at handling her. Go out and practice handling drones. Catch them, hold them etc. This will give you an idea how hard you can squeeze and how hard you have to squeeze to catch a queen. Personally, if I didn't have a queen muff, and I was a beginner, I'd make the push in cage or live with the attendants in that cage.

    > This also is my biggest concern with marking - getting the queen out of and back into the shipping/introduction cage without injury.

    Go to the hardware store and get next year's color and practice on drones.

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesqueenre...m#Queenmarking

    >I know that introduction is a subject theat whole books could be written about.

    Certainly whole chapters.

    > My general plan was to make my splits (new hives queenless) 1-3 days before introduction, introducing the queen in the shipping cage for 3 days or with candy plug intact. The only other queens I have installed came with 3lb packages in wood/wire shipping cages, with candy plugs. Does anyone know how to make thier own "candy" for intro cages?

    There should be some in the cages when you get them. But there are many recipes out there. I prefer to just make a past of sugar and water and microwave it until it simmers and add sugar again until it's a paste. Put it in hot. It's a bit hard (not as soft as the fonant) but it seems to work.

    >Lastly, I am going to have to store the queens until Saturday whether they get here on Thursday or Saturday morning, whats the best way to keep them for 2 days max.? They will be in the mail for 2-3 days getting here if that makes a difference.

    In a cool (like 70 F) dark (like a closet) quite (like a closet) place. Put a drop of water on the wire when they get there and ever day until you use them.

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesfaqs.htm#howtokeepqueens
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Alamo, TN (God's Country)
    Posts
    14

    Default got a chance to practice handling queens.

    Thanks for the replies.

    I checked some hives for a friend of mine who had not looked at them since he pulled supers last fall. One of the hives had apparently just swarmed (although the population was still very large), I found 14 queen cells, some of which had been chewed up others still capped. I saved 6 of the capped cells,2 of these the queens were in the process of chewing their way out.

    I decided to try and save these for a couple of weeks just in case something goes wrong with my ordered queens, while I am making splits. Put some bees in a 3-lb pkg. shipping box and added five queens in homemade containers, feeding with sugar syrup (a 1QT round mason jar fits perfectly into the hole in the pkg box).

    They are not nearly as hard to handle as I had envisioned - although these were very young virgin queens.

    If they live until I get my splits going I'm probably going to kill them, the hive they came from is MEAN.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Troupsburg, NY
    Posts
    4,074

    Default

    "If they live until I get my splits going I'm probably going to kill them, the hive they came from is MEAN."

    You may be surprised at how gentle they might be. While some times a mean queen will will produce mean daughter queens, it can also be the other way around. You just never know sometimes.
    "I reject your reality, and substitute my own." Adam Savage

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    piperton,Tennessee,usa
    Posts
    369

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Bailey View Post

    If they live until I get my splits going I'm probably going to kill them, the hive they came from is MEAN.
    Dont kill them send them to me I'll put them to good use.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Snowmass, Colorado, USA
    Posts
    2,496

    Default visuals

    Here are some visuals on using a push-in cage.

    http://images.google.com/imgres?imgu...%3Den%26sa%3DG

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Greenville, TX, USA
    Posts
    4,382

    Default

    Don't save them too long, they need to mate.

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