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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
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    Default Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    Hello Bee forum,

    I am getting really frustrated and need some words of wisdom.

    I requeened for the 2nd time this year on my first hive and I am pretty sure she was not accepted on inspection today. I had requeened on Friday, had killed (the previous queen because she was laying drones) and removed one queen cell they were starting.

    Today I checked and the queen was not in the cage, they ate through the candy very quickly to release her but I have a feeling that they killed her because I found 3 queen cells today and they were very defensive and loud. I guess I should do a more thorough inspection tomorrow and see if she is there for sure or not, I did not fully inspect today because I am allergic (getting bee venom shots, now monthly) and they already stung me once today so I try to not push them. It is difficult for me to see eggs, today I saw a lot of larvae.

    My question is, should I have left in the cork for a few days instead of immediately removing it? I did not even puncture the candy cork. I do not know for sure either that they killed her but I have a feeling she is not there.

    I have been feeding them because I read to do so. They just seem overall unhappy and there are a lot of drones.

    Any advice on how to requeen more effectively, it is getting expensive and I feel really bad for my bees who seem very stressed. I have been buying italian queens and my bees are italian.

    Thanks so much.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2009
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    Palm Bay, FL, USA
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    2,297

    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    If there are already queen cells with larva or capped they will kill a new queen virtually every time. If you are allergic then it's going to be difficult to go through and cut all the existing cells but it's the only way in order to introduce a mated queen. The remedy is to let them use the cells the bees have built themselves or buy cells from a queen supplier. The bees will usually let an introduced cell emerge. We requeen everything with ripe cells and rarely have problems of acceptance.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    30 East Memphis TN
    Posts
    84

    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    I think you are fortunate to have supesedure cells. I would let them rear their own queen. She will out perform the mail order queen. The fattest supersedure cell will likely be your best queen. Either do nothing and let the bees sort out the new queen or split those queen cells into separate nucs. Likely too late in the year for a split though. Maybe just relax and take it easy.

    rs

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
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    collbran, co
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    562

    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    hello,yep they like to requeen by there self...there is already a queen in there if you see new eggs...i don't buy queens unless i want to change breeds

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Limestone, Alabama
    Posts
    577

    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    A more sure way of re-queening is to start the new queen in a nuc and let her lay in it. Then remove the old queen, wait 24 hours and introduce the nuc (with the new queen and her brood) to the old hive. I rarely lose a queen when introduced in this way.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    New York,NY USA
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    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    Thanks for all of your comments. I had let them requeen themselves prior but that queen ended up just laying drones so I thought she was poorly mated and makes me hesistant to let them requeen themselves again. I have not seen any capped queen cells, only the beginning of them.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, USA
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    5,408

    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    If all they had was a drone-laying-queen, then they may not have viable female larva to raise a queen from. But that won't always stop them from growing queen cells - though it's quite bizarre to see a drone emerge from a queen cell, it happens.

    Do you have any way to provide this queenless hive with a frame of viable eggs?
    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

    The past two seasons I've continuously raised small batches of queen cells so that I always have a few ripe cells available to use whenever something like this happens, and it usually does. Having ripe queen cells always available to place in a colony that has unexpectedly lost its queen has saved me an incredible amount of queenless trouble. It hasn't always been 100% successful, but I'd rate it at 90% or better.
    Last edited by Joseph Clemens; 08-25-2009 at 09:44 PM.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
    Joseph Clemens -- Website Under Constructioni

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
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    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    That would be very odd to have a drone in a queen cell!

    This is my only hive so I do not have any extra frames of eggs I can use.

    Also I was wondering if I should freeze a frame of capped drone cells to get rid of them - but do I then just place it back into the hive or do I need to clean it up or replace it?

    Thanks!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    Faulkner Manitoba, Canada
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    1,700

    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    If you have queen cells, maybe the queen you introduced layed a few eggs. I had this problem this year due to the rough spring. The new queen would lay some eggs and then they would kill her and start a new queen cell.

    Rule of thumb, never go through a hive until the 12day mark after requeening.

    I think it was buzzybee who suggested to put a shim around the inner cover and then place the queen cage on the top of the frames. Then on day 4 you can check if the queen had been released with out disturbing the hive. Thought it to be a good idea.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    Quote Originally Posted by honeyshack View Post

    Rule of thumb, never go through a hive until the 12day mark after requeening.
    Thanks for the info.

    Does this mean I should not fully check tomorrow to see if my queen actually is there?

    I am really worried to wait and prehaps then get a laying worker or swarm cells (don't know if this is even probable, but I worry about them so much)

    I feel like I should requeen as soon as possible if there is no queen but I might run into the same issues all over again!

    I feel like I cannot do the natural queen option because I am in an urban setting and there are not as many drones around, just my thoughts...

    Thank you very much!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    Faulkner Manitoba, Canada
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    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    You have what, 21 days for the queen to hatch... so give it time. They need time to get adjusted to the new queen. Give it a couple of days and listen for the sound from outside the hive, see if they quieten down.
    Time is on your side here

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
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    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    But I am really worried about them being able to survive the winter, I feel like time is not on my side.

  13. #13
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    Feb 2009
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    New Cumberland, PA
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    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    KLY,

    I really feel for you. I am trying to understand your time line on when you did what from the point that you had a dronelayer queen till now.

    When did you actually install the caged queen. I am thinking that they ate thru the candy that she just might be down there. It would take her a couple of days to plump up before she starts laying eggs, but too me, they are too hard to find -- It takes another 3 days for the eggs to hatch to larvae -- Has she been in there long enough for that to happen?

    With you being in New York, you don't have the time for this hive to raise their own queen as she wouldn't start laying 30 days after the queen cell was built. Then you run the risk of an unmated queen.

    If you can protect yourself enough from being stung, I would be in your only hive tomorrow and I would look for her. I would imagine that your worker bees are aging since the previous queen was a drone layer. Do you know when the last time that you saw worker brood as it would give you an idea on how long these bees will be around? Is your population of worker bees dropping in your hive?

    I would need to ask the more experienced on this forum whether your aged bees would be able to take care of the brood if you purchased yourself another queen and she was accepted. I am thinking that it would take another 7 days to 10 days before she started laying and then another 21 days for the brood to hatch. That is along time in a bee's life.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    Quote Originally Posted by CentralPAguy View Post
    KLY,

    I really feel for you. I am trying to understand your time line on when you did what from the point that you had a dronelayer queen till now.

    When did you actually install the caged queen. I am thinking that they ate thru the candy that she just might be down there. It would take her a couple of days to plump up before she starts laying eggs, but too me, they are too hard to find -- It takes another 3 days for the eggs to hatch to larvae -- Has she been in there long enough for that to happen?

    With you being in New York, you don't have the time for this hive to raise their own queen as she wouldn't start laying 30 days after the queen cell was built. Then you run the risk of an unmated queen.

    If you can protect yourself enough from being stung, I would be in your only hive tomorrow and I would look for her. I would imagine that your worker bees are aging since the previous queen was a drone layer. Do you know when the last time that you saw worker brood as it would give you an idea on how long these bees will be around? Is your population of worker bees dropping in your hive?

    I would need to ask the more experienced on this forum whether your aged bees would be able to take care of the brood if you purchased yourself another queen and she was accepted. I am thinking that it would take another 7 days to 10 days before she started laying and then another 21 days for the brood to hatch. That is along time in a bee's life.
    I installed the queen cage on Friday, maybe that is not enough time for her to start laying then. I am not sure when the last time I saw worker brood was...it seems to have been all/mostly drones for some time. I think my workers seem to be overrun by drones now but not exactly sure on percentage. I think I will suit up again tomorrow and look for the queen and then order another if I do not see any signs of her. Should they still seem so defensive if she is there? I appreciate the comments, it really helps. It is easy to feel lost when things keep going so badly. I just want them to survive. Thank you.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    that is a long time in a bee's life. However if goes through the hive KLY goes through the hive to soon, they will ball the queen if she is in there. I do not know when you start your prep for winter. Here, in manitoba, we start the first half of september and wrap no later than halloween. So at this point, any hive that is in trouble in any way gets torn down, IMO. I want a strong hive to enter the winter. The eggs layed now and in the past two weeks or so and the eggs laid until the queen shuts down are the bees that will survive our winter.

    If KLY has a queen and goes in to soon, all the work done will be lost. If this queen does not take, introducing another one will be tough. So in 12 days from introducing this queen, if there are eggs, knock down all queen cells. Go through the hive inch by inch and find any and all that look like cells and knock them down. If there are no eggs, either introduce a new queen, or start fresh next spring. In order to know this you need to tell us your time frame for fall work on the hive, and when your hive goes into winter.

    One advantage to this is you would not have to worry about mites or mite treaments and your comb will have little or no residue for next year. If one hive is all you have, this might be your best recourse if this queen failed

    Remember fall introduction of queens is sometimes iffy, and if your weather has been as tomulchous as ours, it has been hard on queens...so do not sweat it, take it as a learning experience. If you keep an note book on bees, mark in the time frame for checking on queens after introduction, and learn from it.

  16. #16
    Join Date
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    Faulkner Manitoba, Canada
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    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    Quote Originally Posted by KLY View Post
    I installed the queen cage on Friday, maybe that is not enough time for her to start laying then. I am not sure when the last time I saw worker brood was...it seems to have been all/mostly drones for some time. I think my workers seem to be overrun by drones now but not exactly sure on percentage. I think I will suit up again tomorrow and look for the queen and then order another if I do not see any signs of her. Should they still seem so defensive if she is there? I appreciate the comments, it really helps. It is easy to feel lost when things keep going so badly. I just want them to survive. Thank you.
    Okay here is an important thing to note when keeping livestock...AND yes bees are livestock...
    ...if you have live stock you WILL have dead stock...
    take not of this...here is another one
    ...sometime livestock look for ways to die...sometimes those ways surprise you...take it as a learning experience for next year...

    If your hive is over run with drones, and you have no other hive to combine it with, it more than likely will not make the winter with a good cluster...since the bees kick the drones out when you do your fall prep. Before you buy another queen, take a hard look and assess the situation
    1 queen...$20.00 or there abouts...here 26.00
    then feed
    then any treatments
    any above 50% will survive...
    cost to buy a nuc next spring?
    advantage to doing this...you extract all your honey, sell it and set aside the $ from the honey you got from the brood chambers to get a nuc.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    Quote Originally Posted by honeyshack View Post
    that is a long time in a bee's life. However if goes through the hive KLY goes through the hive to soon, they will ball the queen if she is in there. I do not know when you start your prep for winter. Here, in manitoba, we start the first half of september and wrap no later than halloween. So at this point, any hive that is in trouble in any way gets torn down, IMO. I want a strong hive to enter the winter. The eggs layed now and in the past two weeks or so and the eggs laid until the queen shuts down are the bees that will survive our winter.

    If KLY has a queen and goes in to soon, all the work done will be lost. If this queen does not take, introducing another one will be tough. So in 12 days from introducing this queen, if there are eggs, knock down all queen cells. Go through the hive inch by inch and find any and all that look like cells and knock them down. If there are no eggs, either introduce a new queen, or start fresh next spring. In order to know this you need to tell us your time frame for fall work on the hive, and when your hive goes into winter.

    One advantage to this is you would not have to worry about mites or mite treaments and your comb will have little or no residue for next year. If one hive is all you have, this might be your best recourse if this queen failed

    Remember fall introduction of queens is sometimes iffy, and if your weather has been as tomulchous as ours, it has been hard on queens...so do not sweat it, take it as a learning experience. If you keep an note book on bees, mark in the time frame for checking on queens after introduction, and learn from it.
    I should not have opened the hive today, I thought needed to puncture the candy cork, but I should have left them alone for 12 days, correct? I guess live and learn...

    Thanks for the comments!

  18. #18
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    Quote Originally Posted by honeyshack View Post
    Okay here is an important thing to note when keeping livestock...AND yes bees are livestock...
    ...if you have live stock you WILL have dead stock...
    take not of this...here is another one
    ...sometime livestock look for ways to die...sometimes those ways surprise you...take it as a learning experience for next year...

    If your hive is over run with drones, and you have no other hive to combine it with, it more than likely will not make the winter with a good cluster...since the bees kick the drones out when you do your fall prep. Before you buy another queen, take a hard look and assess the situation
    1 queen...$20.00 or there abouts...here 26.00
    then feed
    then any treatments
    any above 50% will survive...
    cost to buy a nuc next spring?
    advantage to doing this...you extract all your honey, sell it and set aside the $ from the honey you got from the brood chambers to get a nuc.
    Good points, something to consider.

  19. #19
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    1,380

    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    KLY,

    You probably won't see larvae yet. To me eggs are hard to see. The queen if she is there has probably plumped up and should be easy to find -- I am thinking that your population of actual bees has dropped which actually makes it easier to find the queen.

    I believe that what Honeyshack says is true that sometimes there is a point in time when you chalk it up to experience.

    You probably have your bees in a "pet" column and not "livestock" column, which explains the need to save your bees. I did the same last year and took a very weak hive that experienced chalkbrood into the winter and was proud that it came thru, but I fed it 7 frames of Honey and 10 pounds of sugar. It never prospered in this spring as it continued to have chalkbrood issues. Finally, I pinched the queen and got myself a new queen and my experience learned was to never do that again as I moved my girls from the "pet" column to the "livestock" column.

    You may not be successful with this batch of bees this year; other than you got experience which is only obtained by living and trying. I am thinking that you may not have much honey to get a cluster thru the winter. If she is not in your hive, then you may want to consider harvesting all the honey for your personal enjoyment knowing that it was made by your girls.

    Next year, please consider getting yourself a second hive so that you have two hives running. If one goes weak, then you can always use the second hive to bring the weak hive arround.

    I am going to keep my fingers crossed for you that your queen is there and has started laying eggs at the minimum. Remember to smoke your bees in order to reduce the possibility of being stung and avoid an allergic reaction.

  20. #20
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Requeened-not accepted again- help!

    if you introduced the queen on friday
    today or tomorrow would be the day to check the cage with minimal disturbance then ...no pulling out frames...get in get out...close the hive and count to day 12...then a thorough inspection

    I like Bizzy's idea on shim up the inner cover with wood all around. place the queen cage on the top of the frames. Then on day 4 you do not have to disturb the hive to see if the queen got out..just a thought and plan to try it next year with my formic rings...will work as shims

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