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Thread: Queen cells

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, USA
    Posts
    248

    Default Queen cells

    I took off my hive top feeder today to clean out some dead bees before I refilled and spied a couple of queen cells near the top edge of the frame closest to the wall in the top box. My bees have made individual queen cells near the bottom of a frame from time to time but I have always found them open with no larve and no royal jelly. Today's two cells were closed with a pupae in each and royal jelly. I did not plan to go into the hive other than cleaning the feeder because I am trying to let the girls get everything situated the way the want it for winter. I could see a fair amount of capped brood just looking down between the frames without pulling them but obviouly I did not see the queen nor could I tell if there were eggs and young larve without pulling frames. The hive population is still very strong so I do not believe there was a swarm. I have been very pleased with this queen and at least from my perspective there was no indication/cause for supercedure. I guess it is possible that she is dead or gone... Should I have searched out the queen? Should I go back and search her out in a few days? If she is not there, is there anything I can do at this point or do I have to let nature take it's course and see if they can raise a queen this late in the year? Perhaps I should not have but I destroyed those two cells in the hope that the queen is alright and that some small number of bees have their own agenda...

    I only have one hive in a suburban back yard so there is no option of combining or using a queen from a nuc colony or any such thing for me.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,316

    Default

    It sounds like a supersedure or an emergency situation. It's late in the year to be raising a queen, but I still see some drones in some of my hives, even though the majority were cleared out a week or so ago. I'm guessing they could still mate a queen. I find it's usually not a good idea to interfere in such things.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    College Station, Texas
    Posts
    6,973

    Default

    carl f writes:
    I took off my hive top feeder today to clean out some dead bees before I refilled

    tecumseh:
    don't really know how your season is progressing in Pa???? Here we have a small fall flow going and I am trying to push the bees a bit in attempting to raise a few late fall queens. Feeding is a part of this activity and those hive that fill the internal space of a hive body may still swarm.

    matter of fact I got one hanging in a tree right now.

    If in your hive you noted lots of brood (this suggest the queen is not being supersceded due to egg laying failure) the the most next likely cause would be a plugged brood nest.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, USA
    Posts
    248

    Default

    For better or for worse I pulled the frames today to see what I could find out. All indications are that they are queenless. There is a good bit of capped brood but the only uncapped brood looks like it is at about day 8 or 9and on the verge of being capped. The queen cells that I found both high and low on the face of a few frames are already closed which means they are at about their 9th day. Apparently they did not waste any time picking up on the absence of the queen. Now I just have to hope for the mild weather to continue long enough for her to get mated. I did see some drones but it did not look like there were many. Hopefully this will prove to be an alright time of year to absorb a little lul in the brood cycle...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Damascus, Maryland
    Posts
    376

    Default

    Carl F
    send me a PM I think I have 8 new queens with out knowing for sure I let my hive set a few weeks ago because I did not see any queen then I just moved it to another local and two days later opened it to see about 3 queens.

    I am an hour from you.

    JB:}
    "Life without God is like an unsharpened pencil - it has no point."

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