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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    Summerville Ga. USA
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    116

    Default Queen acceptance

    I've had this problem several times here lately while playing around with banking queens. After I pull a queen out of a nuc and put an unmated one back in when I try to release her the bees try to kill her. I have tried several different types of releases and keep getting the same results. The most recent was to pull the laying queen and just a few mins. later put the other queen in the nuc inside the cage and 3or 4 days later release her to the frame. Anybody got the solution?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
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    Roy, Wa
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    1,575

    Default Re: Queen acceptance

    I just hatched out about 20 cells in the incubator. Marked them and direct released the same day they hatched into queenless nucs and hives with 100% acceptance. I have done this several times with very good luck.

    I will remove a queen and place a capped cell in her place immediately.

    But I will give hives at least 24 hrs queenless and check for wild cells thoroughly before releasing a virgin. Wait more than a day after they hatch to introduce them, will be balled if you try it direct release. They appear to have no scent when they are recently hatched. First thing they do is dive into a cell and drink, drink, drink. The bees don't even give her a second glance. It may depend on the variety, but I have had good luck with this timing and method with several strains of bees.
    I can take a video if you want to see.

    I use a chicken incubator..works just fine. You can se the hatched marked queens in the horizontal roller cages behind the vertical ones. These were kind of dinky cells and I was surprised the queens came out decently sized. The top of the JZBZ cell was packed full of royal jelly when I put them in the incubator. You can see it right through the plactic cell. On day 13 if they don't have all that royal jelly showing they get tossed.

    I have a variety of hatching times with my hand grafts. This batch hatched over a 2 day period. Of course in the hive, the first one to hatch would kill the other cells. But it makes sense the last cells to hatch were the youngest larva grafted. My last few cells were the largest queens of the bunch. Hmmmmm.....



    Heres a one hour old queen out of those dinky cells. Surprising. (Yes, my fingernails are covered with urethane and dirt..LOL That's just my style) These queens are out of a totally Black as night carni queen. Every daughter is identical. Locally mated Northern hybrids I call them, once they are successful in the mating nucs and ready to go.



    If I read your post right you are banking your virgins then trying to introduce them? Problem with that is you have to do a slow method of introduction and might miss your best mating window. I have found even a recently mated queen, if not yet laying yet, is hard to introduce to a hive in a fast mannor. They just plain don't like them until they are laying well.

    I have three hatched queens from this batch I will have to wait to place tomorrow..Lightning outside and I am not going out. I'll let you know how direct release works after 24 hours post hatch.

    (Update on this release..video about 18 hours post hatch)

    Crummy video but you can see how it went. A few hours later she was walking across the frame freely and well accepted.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hhUr...1&feature=plcp

    I'm no expert..just my experiences so far.

    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Miller...56954971040510
    Last edited by Lauri; 07-14-2012 at 07:32 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Summerville Ga. USA
    Posts
    116

    Default Re: Queen acceptance

    Yeah you got it right I have been keeping them in a make shift bank and then trying to place a few days after they hatched. Some time I would get a break and they would accept them but most of the time they did'nt. A lot of time they would not even be alive when I would go to release them. If you don't mind at what age do you move the cells to the incubator. And could you expand on the slow method of introduction. Thanks so much for your help. Ron Hawkins

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
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    Roy, Wa
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    Default Re: Queen acceptance

    Here is the calendar I use.
    http://www.thebeeyard.org/queencalen...y=17&year=2012

    Every time I graft I plug in my date and print out a copy.Put it on my clip board with my note pad. Highlight the capped cell take out date. Put a sticky note on it with the variety of queen, which hive it is in to start and to finish. I also mark the finisher hive with date and variety of queen with blue painters tape and permanent marker. Keeps me organized and I never forget who is where.

    I move the cells into the incubator on day 13, the day the calendar says to move into nucs. I sometimes do it a day early if needed, If weather is going to be hot, bad or I cannot be home. But I am very careful if I move them early. I never move them late, especially with my JZBZ hand grafts. Nicot grafts are a more even hatch since they are all the same age within a few hours. When I take out my nicot (Mann Lake graftless) type cells, I place the same age larve on the same frame. If I have any larva that is a bit older, I set them aside as I place and replace the cells in the grid and put them on a different frame. I make a notation in my notes and on the finisher hive they were slightly older and allow for a slightly earlier hatch.

    Slow method if introduction would be typical queen shipping cage or push in cage with my release..not the bees.
    Then after a few days release on the side of the frame and watch them for a few minutes. She will probably be very still and submissive while they all check her out. If you have trouble, You'll have one worker that after a minute or two will get her hackles up, get aggressive and they will all join in and start balling her if they don't accept her. If they do that put her back into her cage and give then another few days. (No attendants in the cage)
    When I release a queen I like to see her walk confidently across the frame right from the start, not scared or submissive. She knows when she is in danger I think.

    I am trying out an experiment with the incubator hatched out queens . I handle them several times before letting them go in the hive. I tame them down and teach them to sit and stay for future handling...Just kidding.

    I have to say the queens I have had for over a year and handle regularly are pretty cooperative. Who knows what they remember?

    I AM experimenting with double virgin queen releases in the same hive. (No joke) It works and timing is everything. When I have some measurable results I will post them. Hint: increased mated return percentages and hopefully fall/winter multi queen hives.

    I had one hive going recently with THREE mated, laying queens. NOT in a divided box, all in the same non divided hive. Not a direct release, Mother queen and two grafted daughter cells hatched out in the hive under protective cages for two days post hatch. Let them go after the 'kill' instinct of the virgins wears off and they seem to get along. They lasted a month with out swarming issues, but I finally separated them.( The cells were not built under swarming conditions and two extra queens in the hive do not yet seem to inspire a swarm impulse) If it was closer to fall I would have left them together. Talk about Fall requeening! What a way to get lots of very young bees going into the winter! It might not work with every hive and I don't have any long term results to share yet. But it looks promising so far.
    Last edited by Lauri; 07-14-2012 at 08:53 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Summerville Ga. USA
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    116

    Default Re: Queen acceptance

    What kind of incubator would you reccomend please? I was looking at the HOVA-BATOR INCUBATOR 1602N on ebay for 40$. Ron

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Roy, Wa
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    Default Re: Queen acceptance

    Rube63, I remember looking at commercial models of incubators a few years ago..they were very spendy.
    I'm going to rig something up that is better quality and home made myself. But this Little giant with the forced air fan is about $100 and works great. Just made out of crummy styrofoam. But I have used it for a few years for eggs and it has held up just fine.

  7. #7
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    Jan 2012
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    Roy, Wa
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    Default Re: Queen acceptance

    Just hatched out a new batch of cells. How on earth can a big queen come out of a dinky cell like this? She is 20 minutes old here. Amazing.

    Truthfully, would you have bothered to set this dinky cell in a mating nuc or hive?
    No? Me ether. I am loving this incubator method of hatching.



    See the super glue jell in the back ground? I have not had the guts to try it on the queens for gluing disks yet. I'll try it on some drones and see if it is harsh or not first.
    Last edited by Lauri; 07-15-2012 at 05:04 PM.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Wayensboro, Virginia, USA
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    131

    Default Re: Queen acceptance

    Lauri at what temp do you keep your incubator and do you monitor the humidity I read that the temp should be at 95 and the relative humidity at 50% and how do you control this in your setup.

  9. #9
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    Roy, Wa
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    Default Re: Queen acceptance

    First of all I have a thermometer I trust. Just go to the store and look at the selection. You will se a 15 degree difference in some just sitting in the store! I also have a digital one I like with a sensor-shows interior and exterior temps.

    I am just using my cheapie here.
    Choose a thermometer that reads the same as most of the other choices in the store. That's my best guess.
    I have it sitting on the bottom of my incubator floor and set my temp at about 93 degrees. The heating element is about 4" above that and I am guessing the temp at the interior lid is close to 95-97. WIth the little fan the heat is pretty well distributed and even.
    My thermometer shows the humidity as well. I don't trust the read on it and just keep some water in the reservoir to keep up the moisture level. With the amount of moisture in a hive I'm not worried I can over do that and I seems to be working OK.
    It shows 40% right now but I keep the two little air vents in the top open all the time.


  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Fairfield County, Connecticut, USA
    Posts
    3,589

    Default Re: Queen acceptance

    Cole-Parmer sells nice instruments.

    http://www.coleparmer.com/Category/T..._Products/6207
    BeeCurious
    Trying to think inside the box...

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Wayensboro, Virginia, USA
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    131

    Default Re: Queen acceptance

    So what advantages other than marking does hatching cells out in a incubator have. Why not put cells directly into mating nucs and have no worries about acceptance.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
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    Roy, Wa
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    Default Re: Queen acceptance

    You don't waste a mating nuc for any length of time with an unhatched cell. Also you can cull out any queens that are sub standard at hatching time.
    I have customers that prefer blond or striped colored bees better than blacks. So I don't want to raise too many black queens. Easy to select out of the incubator. Besides I like having more control over what I am producing. They are inspected before they get a chance to progress to the next step..mating.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
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    Wayensboro, Virginia, USA
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    131

    Default Re: Queen acceptance

    Isn't there a threshold that you can cross where you have keep virgin queens banked to long that they will not mate.

  14. #14
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    Roy, Wa
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    Default Re: Queen acceptance

    Personally, After observing the virgins behavior from hatching to mating flights, I would never bank a virgin. The second they hatch they seek out a cell and dive into it and eat like crazy. The next few days they are very active on the frame and illusive to exposure. Instinct to avoid predators I would guess.
    If you check this calendar, you will see from hatching time to mating flights she only has a few days to eat, exercise and harden off to gain strength for the flights. Banking her would restrict her too much and I imagine your return percentages would be low. As far as missing the optimal mating window, I don't know. I an sure there is some thread on that somewhere here on Beesource.
    http://www.thebeeyard.org/queencalen...y=17&year=2012

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
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    Wayensboro, Virginia, USA
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    131

    Default Re: Queen acceptance

    I believe I heard Mike Palmer say in one of his video presentations that Brother Abby would take the laying queen out of a hive and immediately let the new mated queen walk right in the front door with no problems. I would suppose this would have to be done while a heavy flow was on.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Queen acceptance

    Deleted to start another post
    Last edited by Lauri; 07-15-2012 at 07:40 PM.

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