Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Mankato, Minnesota, USA
    Posts
    48

    Default Order a queen or give them a frame of eggs?

    One of my four hives swarmed about three weeks ago. At this time there were about six queen cells in the hive. Since then all queen cells have hatched, I did see one of the new queens two days after they swarmed. She was out side the hive surrounded by many workers that appeared to be attacking her. At this time there are no eggs, no queen and a bunch of very angry bees. They have also filled the brood nest almost completely full of nectar. If I give them a frame of eggs and let them make their own queen. Will this give them enough time to get a new queen up and running before winter? I figured if I ordered a queen they would be a step ahead. What should I do?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Indian Valley, Virginia
    Posts
    587

    Default

    what happened with the other queen cells? if you need a new queen its too late in the year for them to raise their own. you need to get a mated queen. theres probably not many drones around.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Mankato, Minnesota, USA
    Posts
    48

    Default

    All the other queen cells hatched and are now torn down to about half their original size. If I order a queen will they be in good shape for winter? I could always combine them with another hive that swarmed a couple weeks earlier. What would be best?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Fair Grove,MO,USA
    Posts
    1,656

    Default re-queen or eggs

    Andrew,do you know when the queen cells hatched?Have you looked to see if there is another queen.Sometimes the workers decide on the queen they want.The new queen may have been late getting breed due to weather and not laying yet?If your not sure I would give the hive another week.Watch and see if the workers are bringing in pollen,that!s a good sign there is a queen present.

  5. #5

    Default

    Are you absolutely certain that your hive is queenless? Three weeks post swarm can be a short time to get a new queen emerged, matured, mated and then laying long enough to see her new brood readily. They're usually pretty good at getting a replacement. Having said that, they do sometimes fail.
    By all means, put in a frame with eggs. What do you have to lose other than a few days? If they start making queen cells you'll know for sure. Then you can decide what to do. I don't know how it is in MN but here I still have plenty of drones. The real question, in my opinion, is if they're queenless are there enough bees or time to make a cluster that'll survive a MN winter?
    I've heard it said that you want to take your losses in the Fall. I think its good advice.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Pepperell, MA.
    Posts
    3,741

    Default

    If it were me, I'd be ordering a queen and getting her in there now. If your hive is queenright, yes...you'll likely lose your store bought queen but at least you'll have one that's up and running already. If you put a frame in and they DON'T build queen cells, you're probably OK but you're playing with time. If they DO build queen cells, you can wait and hope for the best or you can order a queen. Again, you're playing beat the clock.
    "My wife always wanted girls. Just not thousands and thousands of them......"

  7. #7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Ravenseye View Post
    you're playing beat the clock.
    I guess, in my opinion, if a few days makes that much difference then I wouldn't order a queen regardless. If I thought time were that short I'd still put in a frame with eggs. If they started building queen cells I'd know it was queenless, cut out the cells and then combine it with another hive. If they didn't build queen cells then I'd know there was a queen and would have to find and pinch her before I combined it with another hive. Again, that's if I thought time was so short that a few more days (the time it takes to start queen cells) would put me over the edge.
    I'll repeat my original advice. Take your losses in the Fall.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,423

    Default

    >One of my four hives swarmed about three weeks ago. At this time there were about six queen cells in the hive. Since then all queen cells have hatched, I did see one of the new queens two days after they swarmed. She was out side the hive surrounded by many workers that appeared to be attacking her.

    Maybe she was being evicted as they wanted a different queen.

    > At this time there are no eggs, no queen and a bunch of very angry bees.

    It takes two to three weeks to mate a queen (after she emerges) and get her laying. Sometimes you can get lucky and it will only take a week, but generally you won't see eggs for two and if the weather is too hot or too rainy it may take three.

    > They have also filled the brood nest almost completely full of nectar. If I give them a frame of eggs and let them make their own queen.

    I would do that, not to let them make their own, but to see if they have one or not.

    > Will this give them enough time to get a new queen up and running before winter?

    Probably, but they would be behind on young bees. But odds are they already have a queen who is about to start laying.

    > I figured if I ordered a queen they would be a step ahead. What should I do?

    If you order a queen and they already have one, then they will kill that one if you put her in. You will have wasted your money and your time and a good queen.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads