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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Calvert, Md,USA
    Posts
    1,709

    Default Dealing with capped queen cells in incubators

    I'm starting to like the idea of "finishing" the Q cells in an incubator. I might be a better way for me to go. Once the queens emerge into the protection "cage", do you feed them right away? Don't feed and get them into mating Nucs ? How long is it possible/advisable to keep them in the incubator once emerged, till they can go into nucs? My understanding is there is a three day"hardening off" period anyway.
    Help on this appreciated.
    Thanks
    Rick

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Suffolk, VA
    Posts
    2,277

    Default Re: Dealing with capped queen cells in incubators

    They need food very soon after emergence. I found its best to get them in a nuc ASAP. If not a nuc then at least a queen bank so they can be fed. An incubator is a very poor substitute for a nuc or a bank.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Warrior, Alabama
    Posts
    1,057

    Default Re: Dealing with capped queen cells in incubators

    Very often a newly hatched queen will go directly to a worker cell with a new hatched larva and eat directly from the fresh royal jelly that is there to feed the new larva. They need to be where they can eat or be feed when they hatch.
    Old Guy in Alabama

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Calvert, Md,USA
    Posts
    1,709

    Default Re: Dealing with capped queen cells in incubators

    Humm,,,might re think this. I was thinking more simple. This may not be. Perhaps cell protectors in the hive.
    Thanks

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Philadelphia, MS, USA
    Posts
    613

    Default Re: Dealing with capped queen cells in incubators

    I move cells into my incubator 7 days post graft. I then candle them and move the best into mating nucs on day 10 post graft which is day 14 overall. They hatch the next day.

    If I want to collect virgins, I let them emerge into california mini queen cages that I have stocked with 5 nurse bees and a pea sized ball of queen candy. I check every few hours for emerged queens and pull the cell and replace it with the queen candy tube. You can then place the virgin in a hive like a mated queen.

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

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Calvert, Md,USA
    Posts
    1,709

    Default Re: Dealing with capped queen cells in incubators

    I'm back re-thinkin again. I know I need to be more organized and believe it or not, more options help me. I have the parts and ordered the thermostat for it. It has other uses for transporting things that need to stay warm. It will be set up so I can run it off my vehicle 12 volt too. I'm not sure my wife will understand when I tell her, "I have some virgins in my truck that I'm taking to a friends house." My fun is trying new things. This might be fun.
    Thanks

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    43,492

    Default Re: Dealing with capped queen cells in incubators

    >I'm starting to like the idea of "finishing" the Q cells in an incubator. I might be a better way for me to go.

    It has its problems.

    > Once the queens emerge into the protection "cage", do you feed them right away?

    I put some crystallized honey in the hair curler cage.

    > Don't feed and get them into mating Nucs ?

    They will crawl back in the cell looking for food and die there.

    > How long is it possible/advisable to keep them in the incubator once emerged, till they can go into nucs?

    Even if they have food, not long.

    >My understanding is there is a three day"hardening off" period anyway.

    During which they eat voraciously.

    I have seen the workers open up a capped drone cell for the newly emerged queen and she sucked up the food out of the drone cell.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

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