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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA

    Default Queen Mortality in Migratory Hives

    I have often heard friends of mine say that as many as 10% of the queens in a semi load of bees die. Has that been your experience? What kills them? How do they die? Is it the vibration of the truck? Or what?
    Let America Be America Again
    Mark Berninghausen

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Snowmass, Colorado, USA

    Default Re: Queen Mortality in Migratory Hives

    Other than guys that have lost hives due to truckers stopping during the middle of the day and cooking bees (choose a trucker with experiance hauling bees) I have no idea where your friends are getting their "info." We experiance zero loss from the actual trucking of the bees. Most losses happen in the holding yards and are because the hives were weak to begin with, light on stores or dumped during movement in and out of the orchards.
    Life is tough, but it's tougher when you're stupid. John Wayne

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Bismarck, ND USA

    Default Re: Queen Mortality in Migratory Hives

    My experience is pretty much the same as alpha6. I did hear somewhere that 1% queen loss is typical when hives are moved.
    Gregg Stewart

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Herrick, SD USA

    Default Re: Queen Mortality in Migratory Hives

    Well with the term "as many as" then I might argue it can be as high as 100%. What is a realistic number? 10% is probably on the high side and 1% probably a bit low. I don't really look at them as queen losses as much as hive losses since it's pretty hard to ascertain why a particular hive goes bad. Any time you move a lot of hives you are going to lose some and who is to say they were necessarily good to start with. Last winter we sent 3 semi loads of hand picked strong hives to California to two different handlers and were told by both of them that about 1% had no bees in them just 1 week later. After bloom 6 weeks later the returning hives have more like 5% bad hives. I just accept that as a reality of migratory beekeeping.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney


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