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Thread: I Need HELP!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Leflore county, Mississippi
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    63

    Default I Need HELP!

    Ok I bought a package of bees this spring. Has been nothing but problems from the start dead bee in the package alittle over a tea cup and dead queen. Supplier replaced her in 3 days but the hive started out weak.
    Two weeks after releaseing the new queen I checked the hive and found her and laid eggs but not nearly enough drawn comb. One week later checked the hive looked like no progress or very little had been made and I could not find the queen I assumed I had over looked her. So I waited 2 weeks and yeasterday I went back into the hive I couldnt find the queen and I took every frame out even the ones with out comb. I found eggs and larva but I did find double eggs in some of the cells. Does this mean I have a laying worker. The hive is very week do I try and gaft a queen? Or I might be able to talk a local guy out of one frame of brood, and if so do I let the bees requeen themselves or do I still gaft from that brood frame?

    The only plus side is I caught a swarm last sunday and if they work hard maybe I can use there brood but I know there is no way the bought hive will do anything but survive this year.

    Can you tell the difference in larva laid by a work and larva laid by the queen.
    I know worker larva should be drones but what if its not in drone foundation.
    Also what size should the larva be to gaft does anyone have any good close up pics of gafting and the size of the larva.

    Also there is caped brood in the weak hive would they cap worker laid larva with a standerd worker cell and cap.

    Thanks for any input you might have,

    Michael

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Devils Lake, North Dakota
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    9,183

    Default

    Young queens often lay double eggs. No alarm there.
    Workers lay more than 2 usually, sometimes 6-8 or
    more. And usually worker eggs are stuck to the side
    of the cell.

    How much brood do you have??

    How many frames of bees??

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Arlington, TX, USA
    Posts
    453

    Default

    I've never found the queen from the package I bought, but the hive is going well and there is brood present.

    From what I understand, they will cap over worker laid larva just as they will cap over a queen laid one. Though I'm not entirely convinced that you don't have a queen.

    Are you feeding them and keeping them fed? Is the feed accessible to them? Sugar water does a lot to encourage comb building.

    Doug

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Leflore county, Mississippi
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    Default

    Its been alittle over a month that they have been in the hive they have started drawing out 4 frames and I mean started all but one is only half way down and that one is only 3/4 the way drawn out. When I check on a sunny day like yeasterday there might have been 3 tea cups of bees in the hive I could inspect it with out a hood if I wanted. Now they have pollen and honey and even caped honey on some frames. All in all I beat there was only one or two hunderd caped brood. I have looked at the pics of your nucs and mine resimbles a mateing nuc on strienght.

    What do yall think should they be further along should I order a new queen.
    When should I go back in the hive and look again.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Leflore county, Mississippi
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    63

    Default

    I would feed forty gallons if they would eat it but they won’t and never have only on rainy days and maybe 1/4 a quart at the most. A quart will honestly go bad before they eat it. I go out there a couple times a week to taste it to see if it has fermented yet.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Devils Lake, North Dakota
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    Default

    Sounds like the package seller should have sent you a
    new package and not a new queen.

    If you are seeing eggs, then adding a frame of brood may
    help. If you are going to continue to nurse this one along
    I would get it into a 5 frame Nuc box.

    Combining colonies may be a better option and splitting it
    later.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Arlington, TX, USA
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    Default

    There is a small amount of bees so they arn't going to need as much as say my 30 or so frames of bees (which I can't seem to keep enough feed on). So that is understandable. Just make sure the feed is there.

    You could potentially move then to say a 5 frame nuc and let them build up in there, but that's up to you and I don't see that changing things much. If there is brood present then I'd wait and see after they hatch if the queen keeps filling the empty comb with more eggs. Also, if you get a "drone boom" then I'd say you have a laying worker.

    as a side note, did you start out with foundation or starter strips?

    Doug

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Leflore county, Mississippi
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    Waxed pierco or how ever you spell it. Black plastic covered in wax.
    I am just starting out so drawn comb is a comdity I dont have avaible thinking about ordering frames and wax foundation to see if it would help but I honestly think there is just something wrong with them. The first time I saw the queen she honestly didnt have any place left to lay egg it was either eggs or honey.
    I would think I could find her thought there is so few bees in the hive although there were a few on the side wall of the hive and she could have been with them I wouldnt know why though.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Arlington, TX, USA
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    I've seen many people comment that bees tend to take a while to draw out the plastic frames and at times just wont do it. There are ways to get the bees to be more attracted to them, however I'm still not a fan (just my opinion though).

    Is the queen marked at all?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Leflore county, Mississippi
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    Default

    The queen is not marked but with so few bees I dont think its required.
    Tryed the sugar water on the frames.
    They started out fine with the plastic there is no sign of them clean the wax off anywhere and my frames smell like bees wax which is a good sign I was told.

    How often should I check this hive?

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Arlington, TX, USA
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    Default

    How often do you check them now? And are they located at home or in an out yard?

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    North Bend, WA
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    506

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    Do you have another hive you could pull a frame of capped brood from? That would go a long way toward getting this hive on the right path. Other than that, you may just have to wait until some of the brood starts hatching. In the meantime, feed them all they can take and make sure the entrance reducer is at it's smallest.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Leflore county, Mississippi
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    In the back pasture and I had waited two weeks and before that once a week at the most.
    The reason I ask is there was some cells with out eggs or honey looked like where the caped brood was two weeks before. So I could check to see if they are filled with eggs next time or if they have honey in them.

    I have this hive and I got a swarm sunday had to check the swarm yesterday
    I had an empty hive body over one with frames so I had to get the comb out and concentrate them down to one hive body. but they had already built half of what my other hive has in just one day. That was natural comb with from the top.

    I used some of that comb in the next swarm trap.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    San Bernardino County California
    Posts
    168

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    I took out my Pierco foundation this past week. This Spring they just really prefer the wax foundation. A friend of mine says he gets good acceptance of Pierco foundation by coating it liberally with melted wax, so I'll probably try that and re-introduce it gradually. But for now, I really need the drawn comb too and wax foundation along with feeding is the ticket to getting it.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Jacksonville, Florida, USA
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    33

    Default

    sounds to me that your hive is pretty much on track. the package bees are now mostly dead from old age. new bees are emerging so you are just getting new nurse bees. all older bees than newly emerged would be out foraging during the day when you are looking in the hive. as you get more nurse bees your queen can start laying more and more as she has the right age bees to take care of them. the new bees are also the ones that produce wax as they get older their wax glands stop producing. I think you will see this hive start to grow from here. just keep the feed to them and stay out of the hive for as long as you can stand. checking it no more than once a week longer if posible. when you check it maybe take pictures so you can compare and see its progress.
    you asked about cells if the cells are flat they are worker brood. if they are domed or bullet shaped they are drone brood. the bees will lay drone brood and worker brood on the same comb thirty plus drones per comb is normal. if you do have a laying worker all new brood will be drone brood and no worker brood at all. I think you are seeing two eggs here and there because your queen doesn't have much room to lay yet but her nature is telling her to lay lay lay
    or she is young and will settle into laying given a little time.
    you are right how ever that that this hive will only build up to the point of over wintering most likely. but that is the goal of a package. next year will be a whole new game!

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