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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Salisbury, NC USA
    Posts
    54

    Default Can capped queen cells be moved to a queenright hive?

    I use the same box for a cell builder and a cell finisher. Would it be safe to move capped Queen cells to a queenright colony, or would the bees break them down?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Calhoun Co, Texas, USA
    Posts
    1,310

    Default Re: Can capped queen cells be moved to a queenright hive?

    What is the goal of moving the capped queen cell to a queenright colony? Are you attempting "forced" supercedure, or just trying to "store" and incubate the cell for a couple days before moving it to a mating nuc?
    I'm guessing that if the bees in the queenright colony do NOT tear it down, then the virgin will emerge & kill the queen in your queenright hive. If you're just "storing" the cell in the queenright hive, eventually you're going to have one emerge early, and then you're going to end up with a couple weeks' brood-break after the virgin kills your laying queen.


    Just my $0.02

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Salisbury, NC USA
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Can capped queen cells be moved to a queenright hive?

    The goal would be to store it, until time to move them to the mating nucs, so that I can do another round of grafting to add to my cell builder. I didn't figure my cell builder would start new cells, if there were already finished cells in the cell builder. I know that people use queenright colonies for cell finishers....I just didn't know if a queenright colony would accept finished cells.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Philadelphia, MS, USA
    Posts
    633

    Default Re: Can capped queen cells be moved to a queenright hive?

    It will work if you put them above a queen excluder. You can also buy a cheap styrofoam chicken incubator and keep them in there. Set it on 92 degrees and keep water in it for humidity. Easier than putting in and taking out of a QR colony.



    Johnny
    "Suppose you were an idiot and suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself." - Mark Twain

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Salisbury, NC USA
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Can capped queen cells be moved to a queenright hive?

    I do have a chicken incubator. If I use it should I just make some type of jig to hold them in the upright position?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Philadelphia, MS, USA
    Posts
    633

    Default Re: Can capped queen cells be moved to a queenright hive?

    I made a wood frame that I glued to the styrofoam that holds my cell bars. It works great.

    Johnny
    "Suppose you were an idiot and suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself." - Mark Twain

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Posts
    1,715

    Default Re: Can capped queen cells be moved to a queenright hive?

    BrokeT, Do you move the cells to incubator on day 7 after being capped?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Philadelphia, MS, USA
    Posts
    633

    Default Re: Can capped queen cells be moved to a queenright hive?

    I move them 7 days after grafting so I can put a new graft in my cell builder. It will be overall day 11.

    Johnny
    "Suppose you were an idiot and suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself." - Mark Twain

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, USA
    Posts
    5,408

    Default Re: Can capped queen cells be moved to a queenright hive?

    I have several different aged batches of cells in my queenless cell builder/finisher colonies almost continually. I have noticed only that when I add frames of open brood, that fewer cells of worker brood are converted into emergency queen cells if there are plenty of cell bars with open queen cells.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
    Joseph Clemens -- Website Under Constructioni

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Salisbury, NC USA
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Can capped queen cells be moved to a queenright hive?

    Do you put the new grafts in immediately after removing the capped cells?

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Philadelphia, MS, USA
    Posts
    633

    Default Re: Can capped queen cells be moved to a queenright hive?

    I go thru and pull all the cells out and put them in the incubator. Then I start grafting and putting cells back in the cell builders. Maybe an hour between.

    Johnny
    "Suppose you were an idiot and suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself." - Mark Twain

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Salisbury, NC USA
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Can capped queen cells be moved to a queenright hive?

    Thanks so much, I really appreciate all your help and advice

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Gardners, PA
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Can capped queen cells be moved to a queenright hive?

    I just tried two batches of grafts through a queen-right starter and finisher here in PA. I based the method on the Dan Purvis articles in Bee Culture earlier this year.

    Queen is below an excluder. Plenty of young bees. Feeding syrup regularly. Nice pollen frame and young open brood next to cell bar frame. Working the brood on seven day intervals. Weather has been near frosting a few nights and variable days, but some good flight days. Plenty of other hives making lots of swarm cells due to the early warm weather we had in March.

    Both times the cell that were started (19 out of 20 first graft and 11 out of 20 for second) looked great on day seven: capped, white wax well mottled, lots of bee coverage. On day 10 most of the cells had been torn down (all but 6 for first and 2 for last). I feel very certain I grafted 12 -24 hour old larvae. I shook the bees in the upper box thru an excluder after the first batch, but saw no rouge virgin.

    I know I remember Dan Purvis mentioning that in this system, the bees are more sensitive to problems and will remove cells if there is a problem. I also believe he said the start for the next batch might be improved if the capped cells are removed before the next graft is put in.

    I haven't been doing this very long. Anyone have any ideas on possible causes? I suppose I could find a chicken incubator too.

    I will keep trying.

    Jonathan

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Salisbury, NC USA
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Can capped queen cells be moved to a queenright hive?

    I tried a queen right cell builder/finisher when I first started two years ago, and had the same problem. I had 14 nice grafts that were capped, but before time to move them to the nucs, they were all destroyed. We actually saw the virgin go back down through the plastic queen excluder that was on the hive. Virgins are not as 'fat' as mated Queens and can often slip through the excluders, and the virgins are the ones that will tear down the cells. That is why I changed to a queenless cell builder/finisher, and I check for stray cells, at the beginning day of the graft, and again on day 6 and day 9.

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