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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Martin, Tn
    Posts
    75

    Default Tips for getting new queens going

    Last year was my first attempt at making queens on a scale larger than simple splits. I used the nicot method per Grant's instructions and came out with 23 beautiful queens from large cells. When the cells were capped i put hair roller cages over them and let them hatch in the original hive where they were raised. Once they hatched I transfered them to nucs with mostly a fram of brood, frame of honey and 3 frames foundation. All 23 were accepted by their new nucs but then things turned bad. After about two weeks i noticed only about 5 or so of the queens were in their nucs. I thought, ok, maybe the other are still out mating. As time went by, i noticed those other queens never came back and i also lost a couple of the five. So i then had 3 queens that started laying but never really took off. All 3 nucs eventually just died off before winter even got here. I did not feed and i know i should have but there was honey in all the nucs. Several of my other colonies also met their demise from what i can only conclude is CCD. One week they were there and literally 7 day from getting back from vacation there wasn't a bee in the hives. Is there something i could be missing? I've heard that dragonflies eat bees and we have tons of them around my place but could they really do that much damage? I really hate having a 0 percent success rate and i'm bound and dertermined to do it right this year. Things i have learned/observed/questions:
    Feed Feed Feed new nucs
    Could the dragonflies affect virgins on flights? if so is there a good control for dfs?
    Everyone knows we had a major drought, was it just a bad year for queens/hives?
    something im missing?
    Jason Young

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Ft. Collins, Colorado
    Posts
    578

    Default Re: Tips for getting new queens going

    Sorry about that Jason. You don't say if you gave any extra shakes of nurse bees when you made up your nucs. I would try "bumping up" or strengthening the amount of bees that go into your nucs. If you weren't feeding and fall was coming more than likely they just absconded. They know when it's a dire situation and off they go. Good luck this year with a little more feed and bees hopefully.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Martin, Tn
    Posts
    75

    Default Re: Tips for getting new queens going

    yes, i shook 1 or two brood frames into each one as well. It was in april last year so fall was no where close.
    Jason Young

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,541

    Default Re: Tips for getting new queens going

    Quote Originally Posted by jayoung21 View Post
    something im missing?
    Let the cells emerge in the nucs?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Huntsville, Alabama
    Posts
    677

    Default Re: Tips for getting new queens going

    I sell 25-30 nucs a year and use the NICOT. I have found much less success with the queens when I have allowed the queens to hatch in the cages and then placed them in queenless splits. If I place them in the nucs unhatched, the success rate is noticeably higher.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Martin, Tn
    Posts
    75

    Default Re: Tips for getting new queens going

    Yeah, I forgot to mention that I was going to try letting them hatch in the nucs this year. I hear the acceptance is quicker. I figure less stress on them too since they are already right there in their home.
    Jason Young

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Sacramento,California,USA
    Posts
    3,834

    Default Re: Tips for getting new queens going

    Use frames of open nectar instead of honey in the nucs, as nectar is what they need for immediate feed, and add a frame of mostly pollen as well. I also would add one more frame of brood to it, as I make up a bit stronger nucs for them to start off with than what you did.
    “When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” – John Muir

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Martin, Tn
    Posts
    75

    Default Re: Tips for getting new queens going

    Ill try that too. So far my plans this year:
    Put ripe cells in nucs
    Up nuc resources to 2 frames brood, pollen, and unsealed nectar
    shake a couple extra frames of nurse bees into nucs
    Feed continuous sugar syrup and pollen sub
    Jason Young

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