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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Chippew County, WI, USA
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    650

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    I have had this method at the back of my head for a few years now. I have doubts though about queen quality and wonder why would they be any better than other emergency queens because that's basically what they are and how well are they really feed for the first couple days when they decide or are deciding to make it a queen or not.

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    noth Islan, New Zealand
    Posts
    17

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    Quote Originally Posted by DonShackelford View Post
    Fieldbee; What's a split board?
    you may call it a division board or here in NZ some call them hive mats, a piece of ply board in a frame with a small entrance cut out.

  3. #23
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Palm Bay, FL, USA
    Posts
    2,297

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    jmgi; ditto the glasses! However, I buy the 2X reading glasses at Walgreens Drug Stores; around $8-9. Keep one in the truck, one in my beekeeping box, one in the car, one in the living room and 2 next to the computer 'cuz my wife always runs off with a pair. And I still can't find a pair when I need them. It's not good getting old!

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Indianapolis IN 46227
    Posts
    285

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    Fieldbee; Can I ask what the purpose of the split board is? Does it allow bees to travel through to both broods?

    WI-beek; notching the brood creates a downward angle for queen cells to be constructed, so it is different than cells built on the side of the comb which appear to go out then down as in an emergency cell.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Grand Blanc, MI
    Posts
    169

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    To me this seems like alot of work. Why not just let the bees choose where to make the queen cells? Maybe I'm missing something.

  6. #26
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Hartwell, GA
    Posts
    183

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    Quote Originally Posted by spencer View Post
    To me this seems like alot of work. Why not just let the bees choose where to make the queen cells? Maybe I'm missing something.
    The point is to raise Queens to host NUC's to sell to those who can't keep their bees alive or are just starting out. In today's environment, with the pest, pesticides and unexplained abscounce new bees are always in demand. It's no reflection on bee keepers abilities, it's just fact that the world is losing feral bee colonies and if we don't intervene, and in a natural way, there will be no bees.


    No Bees, No Bread, No Bread, You are Dead.

  7. #27
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Hartwell, GA
    Posts
    183

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    One more thought, I used the CVS 2.5 mag. glasses and couldn't find larvae small enough to use for OTS.

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Grosse Ile, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    2,902

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    For those who have used OTS queen rearing, are you doing it mostly for making up multiple starts as Mel does, or are you doing it for a single split, like a cut down split or walk away split?

    As for finding the right age larvae, although I have not done it yet, I will have to do it any day now, I know that when you see a frame of eggs, there is no royal jelly in with them. But if you scan the area with just eggs, and look at the outer edges of that area, you will see some cells that begin to look like they have a little puddle of whitish liquid, in that puddle lies a larvae which is the right age for notching or tearing down the bottom of the cell wall. Some larvae will be laying in a larger puddle than others, you want to pick the ones with the smallest puddle of jelly you can find next to cells with eggs. I know what to look for, just have'nt actually done the OTS yet. John

  9. #29
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Hartwell, GA
    Posts
    183

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    Right now, I'm confused, again. Ain't that a befuddling predicament. The cells that I thought were three days old were small "C" with a barely wet bottom. You could see the larvae above the RJ. Were they too old ?

  10. #30
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Palm Bay, FL, USA
    Posts
    2,297

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    The larva are just about the same size as the egg they just hatched from. If they're in a very small puddle of RJ they're probably OK. You realize, of course, that it doesn't hurt anything to try these techniques? You can't hurt the hive! If the bees don't draw cells do it again. Try grafting! A queen can lay 1500 eggs a day; do you think it will kill off a hive to practice grafting a dozen, or 2 dozen, or 100 of those larva? Take an empty frame of drawn comb and put it right next to a frame of eggs/open brood in the brood box. Check it every day. The first day that you see larva is the right day to graft or use OTS; the larva are exactly the right age, they have to be, they just hatched within the last 24 hours since you checked them yesterday. When you get done fooling with that frame wash it out with a hose/spray nozzle, shake the water out and put it back in the same position again. Amazingly enough, the same thing will occur again; 3-4 days after you put it in you'll have the right age larva.

  11. #31
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Drain, OR
    Posts
    424

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    Quote Originally Posted by WI-beek View Post
    I have doubts though about queen quality and wonder why would they be any better than other emergency queens because that's basically what they are and how well are they really feed for the first couple days when they decide or are deciding to make it a queen or not.
    OK, I'll take a crack at this one. I make no claim to know anything, but I just got done reading Better Queens by Jay Smith, and he talks a lot about the importance of the right amount of feed for good queens. For a standard emergency queen, the bees flood the cell with royal jelly, floating the larva out, then they build the cell hanging down on the face of the comb. In this kind of cell, the larva doesn't really get to eat all the royal jelly that is provided. A lot of it stays up in the comb's cell, while the larva ends up down in the hanging queen cell. So they e-queen lacks great nutrition for a bit, after it has been floated out of the cell. With OTS, the bees build the queen cell such that it incorporates the comb cell bottom and top. This would allow for the larva to be in direct contact with it's fed the entire time, just like a normal queen cup and cell. So the problem with e-queens is they get floated out of their food, and can't get back to it after a bit. OTS queens shouldn't have that problem..

    This is just my guess, based on reading I've done..
    A backyard hobbyist, keeping hives since '09. ~ http://www.sweetthangchocolates.com
    Zone 8a/8b

  12. #32
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hudson, WI USA
    Posts
    2,217

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    Capricorn, that is how I also understand it. Better queens is a great book.

    I have another point. If a person is following following Mel's methods the worry of whether or not the queen has the ability to produce eggs for a long time is irrelevant because she will be removed and never tested for longevity because of the frequency of induced requeening with this method.

  13. #33
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Indianapolis IN 46227
    Posts
    285

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    Adrian, Mel requeens every July, which is what all the old beekeeping books teach. i don't know of any breeders developing queens that can lay well season after season.

  14. #34
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Grosse Ile, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    2,902

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    I think most queens will lay well from the beekeepers point of view for about two seasons, but I think the bees like a new one every year. John

  15. #35
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hudson, WI USA
    Posts
    2,217

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    Don, I'm convinced that June/July is the best time for making queens and splits, at least in my area; The temps are going to be consistently 70 degrees or better, there are plenty of drones around, the bees don't have to cluster up, and there is nectar coming in. My maxim is "go with the flow".

  16. #36
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Indianapolis IN 46227
    Posts
    285

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    Doolittle wrote that a queen MATED after June 21st will lay like a spring queen well into fall. This seems to be the basis of Mel's nuc management program.
    A question;
    Mel uses 2 frames of brood for both spring and summer splits. Just about everyone else I've talked to warns that it takes 3 frames of brood to get ready for winter. Anyone try it both ways to see the difference?

  17. #37
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hudson, WI USA
    Posts
    2,217

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    Don, I split one single deep hive 4 ways in Mid-June, into 5 frame nucs, let them build up, and then added a second storey and they overwintered just fine.
    My other group of 5 nucs came from splitting 2 hives into 7 (5 frame) nucs, one didn't mate, one contained the original queen. I added a second storey and the 5 also overwintered.
    Michael Palmer's vimeo lecture talks about the appropriateness of bees matching their space and the benefits of a more vertical space. I think that when making 2 frame splits they will do better in a nuc box than a ten framer.

  18. #38
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Indianapolis IN 46227
    Posts
    285

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    Thanks for the info Adrian. It is reassuring. The last thing I'd want to do is stretch the bees too thin and lose all.

    Did you give your starts queens or queen cells? Did you feed them?

    Last fall when I was setting up my reentry to beekeeping, I decided to settle on all 8 frame deeps as a compromise between nucs and 10 framers. Being 500 miles south of you, and further from M Palmer, it seemed reasonable to winter in one 8 frame with top feeder. I'm also using true 1 1/4 frames, so there are 9 in the box. I understand this is a little more risk, but here in Indy the bees can usually make it to the next honey frame between cold snaps.
    If my loss rate is a little higher this way, it will still be a more economical method for me. Of course if my loss rate is substantial, then I chose the wrong path. I am working on a division board to let me make 2 4 frame starts in one box. Holding breath through this coming winter!
    Last edited by DonShackelford; 04-22-2012 at 05:11 AM.

  19. #39
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hudson, WI USA
    Posts
    2,217

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    Don, good luck - it sounds like you have a well thought out plan.
    In answer to your question: I have two groups of nucs the first one came from cells on new comb that resulted because I accidentally killed the queen; The second came from swarm cells. Giving cells makes for a longer brood break.
    The nucs built up well on the Goldenrod flow, and then I topped them off with 2 gallons of syrup.

  20. #40
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Flora,IL
    Posts
    2,644

    Default Re: On the Spot Queen Rearing

    I use it constaly.. A few hundred a year. Don't worry about the age of the larve, pick eggs. they will work fine. its not like grafting. I usually pick 3-4 per frame Just in case and check in 10 days

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