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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Fairfax, Vermont
    Posts
    106

    Question Found 2 Queens in one hive

    Today I was checking my hives and came across one hive that had a couple of queen cells that were being torn down by the bees. This lead me to believe the hive had swarmed. Upon further inspection I found the original queen marked with green paint.

    This got be quite curious, so I continued to look through the hive. Upon further inspection I found another queen in the hive. The new queen I saw is mated and laying, as I witnessed her depositing eggs into cells. The original queen with the green dot is also laying. So for now, I have a hive with two laying queens, mother and daughter.

    I'm gathering that the hive is trying to supercede the old queen, for a variety of reasons that I will never know.

    Does anyone have any advice on what I should do?

    Kill the original queen with green dot?

    Transfer the new queen to a nuc?

    Leave the hive alone and let the bees decide?

    By the way, I did mark the new queen with blue paint, so I can track what happens if the hive decides to keep the newly mated queen.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    JACKSON OHIO
    Posts
    486

    Default Re: Found 2 Queens in one hive

    split

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,462

    Default Re: Found 2 Queens in one hive

    Leave the hive to do what it wants. Some will continue to keep both laying queens.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Menomonee Falls, Wis.
    Posts
    2,729

    Default Re: Found 2 Queens in one hive

    Let her roll the way she is. The "Bull of the Woods" says 10 percent of the hives have 2 queens. They can generate large populations and make more honey.

    Roland

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Knox County, Ohio
    Posts
    2,694

    Default Re: Found 2 Queens in one hive

    I was checking some hives today and found one that had two queens in it. The hive is being hammered pretty hard by chalkbrood, so I suspect the bees are getting ready to swap out mama. Both queens appeared to be mated, but I think the smaller one was freshly mated, and there were no eggs on the frames near where she was at.

    Less than 10% of brood was making it to being sealed. Most of the larvae were dying anywhere from C-shaped larvae to grubs almost ready to cap off. I didn't do anything about the queens. I'll let the bees do what they are going to do. This hive isn't going to amount to anything this year, so I'm not going to waste much time on it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,320

    Default Re: Found 2 Queens in one hive

    Why would you think you need to do something?

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beeslazy.htm#donothing
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Fairfax, Vermont
    Posts
    106

    Default Re: Found 2 Queens in one hive

    MP and MB, thanks for the advice. I'll leave them be. It'll be fun to sit back to watch what mother nature decides.....

    Thanks again.

    MP, this was one of the #33's

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Washtenaw County, MI, USA
    Posts
    90

    Default Re: Found 2 Queens in one hive

    Published research has data that indicates 30% ( my recall, may be off) of hives may have 2 queens.

    It was a surprisingly high % (to me) at least.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,462

    Default Re: Found 2 Queens in one hive

    Quote Originally Posted by toomanyhandles View Post
    Published research has data that indicates 30% ( my recall, may be off) of hives may have 2 queens.

    It was a surprisingly high % (to me) at least.
    Actually, right on. In 2004 I had 50 colonies I was requeening. I use the top brood box as my requeening nuc...no extra equipment. So I set them up, and gave them caged queens, all ofer the inner cover. 3 weeks aftewr setup, I go below and kill old queen and unite. Of the 50, 17 had multiple queens.

    I've also heard of 30% failure rates in direct requeening...killing old queen and adding caged queen. Wonder if that has anything to do with multiple queens?

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