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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
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    Roy, Wa
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    1,598

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    Quote Originally Posted by snl View Post
    If the weather is warm (days & nites) I've introduced virgin queens on just emerging brood (no bees at all) and have a great success rate..........
    Thanks, I'll try that when it warms up.Sounds like a good idea!

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Roy, Wa
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    Default Re: Russell Queens

    Quote Originally Posted by Brandy View Post
    OK, so what am I missing here?? Why aren't they mating those virgins vs. eliminating them either with the pinch throw out method, or shipping method??
    Here is one of my posts on another thread that will explain how I ended up getting virgin queens instead of mated queens:

    I've been jealously reading for months, those in warmer climates working their bees and collection swarms, etc.
    All the while my over wintered bees are still huddled in the hives, with only an occasional cleansing flight.
    I wish I could be as patient as some of you who can be OK with accepting your queens anytime they should show.
    If they 'show' here too late in the fall, They will just go right into a hive preparing to over winter, and you know how that goes.
    The inactive period my bees have to endure is a little scary already. I have heard the Sunkist queens may not do well here in the North. My plan was to split my hives early, get a few of the strongest queens grafted and mated with local drones for a hardier bee that would stand a better chance for survival.


    From the post above,
    BeeHughshoney had a great idea I could just get virgin queens since I wanted to get their daughter queens mated with my local drones anyway. He contected Russell and they sent them out the same day. I'll give it a shot, sounds like another challenge to master
    Last edited by Lauri; 05-23-2012 at 03:12 PM.

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Dexter, Maine
    Posts
    1,037

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    I hope when/if tragedy befalls you, no one cuts you any slack either.

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Suffolk, VA
    Posts
    2,545

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    Quote Originally Posted by camero7 View Post
    ammonium nitrate
    Wow, that's a new one for me. Where did you hear about ammonium nitrate? Is this safe for the bees and beekeeper?

    What I do is treat virgins exactly the same as mated queens (slow candy release or push in cage).The smaller the colony the better, the more nurse bees the better. You can use a spray bottle with HBH to lightly mist the bees prior to installing the queen. Do not spray the queen. This is a very mild solution of HBH (either in plan water or with sugar water), don't make it too strong and don't use a lot. One pump per 5 frame nuc is plenty. It's not toxic to either bees or keeper and a little goes a long way.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Manning, SC
    Posts
    2,076

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    If the weather is warm (days & nites) I've introduced virgin queens on just emerging brood (no bees at all) and have a great success rate..........Actually I've used it with 100% success using mated queens also (again, warm days & nites)..........
    http://OxaVap.com
    Your source for Oxalic Acid Vaporizers

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Ft. Collins, Colorado
    Posts
    520

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    "There are so many grafts emerging every day that they don't have places for them because they over graft to be safe. They just throw them away."

    That's what I was missing, the extra over grafts etc........

    I was thinking something was wrong with this picture!!

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Millbury, MA, USA
    Posts
    1,812

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    Quote Originally Posted by AstroBee View Post
    Wow, that's a new one for me. Where did you hear about ammonium nitrate? Is this safe for the bees and beekeeper?
    Ammonium nitrate when heated becomes laughing gas. It anesthetizes the bees and when they wake the bees accept the queen. Several beekeepers use it with success. I am trying it for the first time this week. I will post how it turns out. If the beekeeper sniffs it he gets the giggles

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Roy, Wa
    Posts
    1,598

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    Quote Originally Posted by brac View Post
    I hope when/if tragedy befalls you, no one cuts you any slack either.
    Lots of opinions about Russell. I am done talking about it and won't respond to those that know nothing about the situation and are nasty.

    Maybe before you voice your opinion you should read this thread.
    http://www.beesource.com/forums/show...Russell-Queens

    Quote Originally Posted by Brandy View Post
    "There are so many grafts emerging every day that they don't have places for them because they over graft to be safe. They just throw them away."

    That's what I was missing, the extra over grafts etc........

    I was thinking something was wrong with this picture!!
    And that works fine for me. Russell's are so stressed and overworked I felt bad about wanting my order, but I can't afford to throw away $200.+ ether. They got $$ for product they were going to throw away, and I got somethign for my money too. Hopefully it works well for both of us!

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Roy, Wa
    Posts
    1,598

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    Queens arrived, the weather broke just long enough to install them. All went well except one flew away.
    The buckfast were all acepted direct release. The sunkist were not accepted well and were installled in the shipping cage.

    Remember in the post above I shook and brushed bees in to a deep box with 20 mini frames with a good sized starter strip. It worked well, here you can see I just took out each frame and placed it in the nuc between the two empty frames. Towards the end I used the frame and strip of foundation to scoop the bees up off the side and bottom of the box.


    Baby nuc holds three half sized frame top bars, screened bottom with insert, Below you can see I put a quart heavy ziploc baggie with syrup for feeding. One very tiny poke in the top to let them feed


    Here you see the baby nucs, a cardboard nuc divided in half to make two mating nucs and (I am ashamed to say it) top right you see 6 styrofoam coolers from the dollar store in case I get in a pinch for mating nucs.








    Below you see the $1.00 cooler with glued on strip to hold frames. Hardware cloth will hold in a pollen patty in the excess room in the lid. Baggie feeder will go in the bottom. I poked a lot of additional holes for ventilation. These are very light weight and would crush easily. Not good for someone like me with a lab puppy! But if I use them they will be wedged in between potted plants for protection.
    Last edited by Lauri; 05-23-2012 at 08:27 PM.

  10. #30

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    It is interesting that the one variety were easily accepted while the other not. I hope you will update the thread once the final results are in.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  11. #31
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Roy, Wa
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    1,598

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    I was thinking perhaps the Buckfast's were a bit younger than the Sunkists? I have read newly hatched virgins are accepted better than older ones.
    Yes, I took the half frame with about 3" of foundation filled with bees and turned it on it's side on top the mating box. Letting the Buckfast queen go in the center of the foundation, I watched for a minute or so and they just totally ignored the buckfast queens like they were just any other bee. The queens walked around in a relaxed mannor. The bees did not even give her a second look.

    The Sunkist however attracted attention immediately. The queens acted intimidated by the bees and were very still while they surrounded her. Then a few started acting aggressive and trying to sting and ball her. I tried only two times and it was the same both times-so I just went to the shipping cage release method-poking a toothpick sized hole in the candy.

    One note, the shook swarm was from two different hives and was only queenless for about 5 hours before the introduction. Russell's sent the virgins out overnight and I was not prepared for their quick response.

    I had 8 Buckfasts and 12 Sunkist Northern Select

    I wish I knew exactly what day these queens were hatched so I could confine them for the longest time. Not knowing, one day is probably max.
    Yes, I will update with info and photos when I have something to share

    Here is the method I used (Somewhat)
    These are in a series and are amazingly informitive:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wZlQ7...feature=relmfu

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jVwAi...feature=relmfu

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W3lLi...feature=relmfu

    Below is the video showing filling the mating nucs with bees and a virgin. I did not just shake her into the nuc as they do..theirs are probably newly hatched. I observed mine carefully with each introduction.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lV-3B...feature=relmfu

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ELLcz...feature=relmfu

  12. #32
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Worcester County, Massachusetts
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    3,587

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    Quote Originally Posted by camero7 View Post
    Ammonium nitrate....
    I've been present when ammonium nitrate was used in a similar manner....I'd consider it an emergency plan for securing bees in a very populated situation (knocks them out).

    ...but have you had poor results introducing virgins without such measures? In your part of the state there must be a hippy kid nearby with a nitrous tank

    deknow

  13. #33
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Suffolk, VA
    Posts
    2,545

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    Quote Originally Posted by Lauri View Post
    I just went to the shipping cage release method-poking a toothpick sized hole in the candy.
    Great job and thanks for posting your experience and methods.

    Regarding poking a hole in the candy, I've stopped doing that a long ago (even for virgins) - particularly if the bees are showing signs of aggression. When aggression is shown, then slower is better. The difference is about 1 or 2 days, which can really make a difference in acceptance, and has little or no effect on mating.

  14. #34
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Millbury, MA, USA
    Posts
    1,812

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    Quote Originally Posted by deknow View Post
    I've been present when ammonium nitrate was used in a similar manner....I'd consider it an emergency plan for securing bees in a very populated situation (knocks them out).

    ...but have you had poor results introducing virgins without such measures? In your part of the state there must be a hippy kid nearby with a nitrous tank

    deknow
    Not much experience with virgins of any type But my understanding is, when they've been shipped with workers, they are harder to get accepted. A couple of very successful beekeepers use this method [Juanse and Bob Hack] and swear by it. I'll know in a couple of weeks.

    I've been looking for that kid for years

  15. #35
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Millbury, MA, USA
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    1,812

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    Just checked my nucs in my nuc yard. Out of 13 virgins from Johnny I have 8 which took, 2 are queenless without cells, one may have a queen but didn't see her but there were several queen cells all torn down in the hive. And 2 others have queen cells and no queen. The math works for the queen cells. I think the AN is worth the effort. Several advantages that I see. No dead queens in the cages. Immediate release so you gain a few days in the breeding/laying cycle. No time for bees to start cells before the queen is in the hive. In 2 hives I used AN and put the virgin in with the other queens still present, one worked [two queens present] and one didn't. The queenless hive that I tried with AN was not successful. All-in-all I like the AN and I'm satisfied with the take in my nuc yard. I was a little nervous because the owner of the property has lots of bluebird and swallow bird houses and I was afraid many would get gobbled up. I think I'll stay with the virgins and AN. I have 4 mated queens coming next week. I'll use the AN to introduce them and see how that works. No blaming birds or dragon flies for them.

  16. #36
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Perry, Florida, USA
    Posts
    226

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    lack of space.

  17. #37
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Millbury, MA, USA
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    1,812

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    Quote Originally Posted by psisk View Post
    lack of space.
    ???

  18. #38
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Millbury, MA, USA
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    1,812

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    Checked my other nucs yesterday afternoon. Final results, out of 22 virgins, 12 have laying marked queens, which gives about a 55% success rate. If I had purchased 22 mated queens from the same supplier I would have spent $440.00 [$20 X 22] the virgins cost $110. Shipping is probably a wash. So if I got 100% success rate on the mated queens [hard to do] and my 55% in the virgins, I save good $. I wanted VSH queens so raising my own from splits was not an option for me.I also had to bank the virgins for about 4 - 6 days due to bad weather. I wonder if faster hiving would have helped a little?

  19. #39
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Fairfield County, Connecticut, USA
    Posts
    3,590

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    Quote Originally Posted by camero7 View Post
    I also had to bank the virgins for about 4 - 6 days due to bad weather. I wonder if faster hiving would have helped a little?
    I'm getting some virgins from VPQueens in a few weeks. One batch of queens wouldn't arrive until 4 days after their emergence and it was decided to wait for another batch. Adam Finkelstein suggested that it would be difficult for 4-day old virgins to be accepted. I think he said it would be a waste...
    BeeCurious
    Trying to think inside the box...

  20. #40
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Millbury, MA, USA
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    1,812

    Default Re: Russell Queens

    Adam is extremely knowledgeable so if he said that then my success rate is very good with AN. I'm getting 10 more this week and will put them in right away weather permitting. I do know that my results are similar to another very large beekeeper who uses AN exclusively to introduce virgins.

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