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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Horton,Alabama,USA
    Posts
    88

    Default 1st time rearing queens

    I am new to queen rearing. I am using the Hopkins method. It has been 8 days since I took my queen out the hive and they just started bringing in pollen
    today. I was just wandering if this was a good sign? I am planning to take cells and making splits if they are ready on Friday(day 10).

    Heath

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Sacramento,California,USA
    Posts
    3,561

    Default

    So when you took the queen out of the hive, did you take out any uncapped brood as well? I'm familiar with the Hopkins method, never done it myself tho. Seems to me you'd want to set your frame over the top of a queenless hive that has no hope for making a queen in any of the frames of brood inside the hive. That would mean no uncapped larva or eggs in the frames, and no queen in the hive.

    Bringing in pollen is a good sign in a hive, usually meaning open larva or if not, then a laying queen beginning to lay eggs so pollen is needed in preparation of larva. If you've got open larva in the frames then bringing in pollen is good normal thing to see. If there are no open larva other than on your hopkins frame, then that is good sign also, they are bringing it in for making the royal jelly to feed the queen cells they are making.
    “When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” – John Muir

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Horton,Alabama,USA
    Posts
    88

    Default

    I didn't take any brood out other than what the queen was on. i will make some pics when I take them out and post them to this thread.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Limestone, Alabama
    Posts
    577

    Default

    I like the Hopkins method but I rear the queens in a two deep hive setup with a Cloake board between the two hive bodies. I restrict the queen to the bottom deep and close the board by sliding the insert into place the day before I place the frame with young larvae in the upper deep. I leave these one day and then remove the insert to make the colony queenright once again. This works well as the cells are started in the queenless top body and then finished in a queenright situation. When the cells are capped, I move them to a nursery colony that is two deeps with a queen excluder between them. Make sure the queen is below the excluder.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Horton,Alabama,USA
    Posts
    88

    Default

    I failed miserably I think you are right about leaving the queen in the bottom while raising cells in the top. It is amazing as to how quick the strength of a hive declines in two weeks without a queen.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,464

    Default

    A hive does decline rapidly without a queen. You can expect to see a laying queen between 24 and 32 days after making them queenless. I wouldn't expect anything before 24 days.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Horton,Alabama,USA
    Posts
    88

    Default

    I just figured out what i missed the first go around. I just read that queenless hives have more cells started but queenright hives make better quality cells. That is what I was concerned with was the quality. Now I know what I need to do the next time. The reason I didn't move them to a finisher colony was I just wanted to keep it simple.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Horton,Alabama,USA
    Posts
    88

    Default

    To Ray's point could the queen be confined to the bottom half of the hive with a queen excluder for 5 or so days with brood in both. Then take my eggs out of the bottom half of the hive and place them into the top half with a cloake board and remove any queen cells that had already been started when I replace the queen excluder with the cloake board.

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