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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    218

    Default Two larvae in one queen cup?

    Ok so after a split, nearly a month later, I'm seeing supersedure cells with larvae in them. This is a first for me (only new to being a beek), so I saw at the bottom of one cell two larvae, I didn't get a photo as the nurse bees were VERY busy feeding them, but this sketch is what I saw:
    http://i1339.photobucket.com/albums/...ps8e496749.jpg Clearly two larvae, but how? The larvae were ~1.5mm in length at the time.

    http://i1339.photobucket.com/albums/...ps375e0467.jpg this cell is on another frame and is WAY more developed and as you'd expect singularly occupied.

    Anyway later today after the clouds break up some more I'll try to get a photo to confirm what is going on......

    http://i1339.photobucket.com/albums/...ps91f54532.jpg This was taken an hour or so ago, really hard to tell, but I'm sure this is the double occupancy queen cell, pity the photo doesn't show much of anything at all.
    Last edited by praxis178; 04-05-2013 at 11:07 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,732

    Default Re: Two larvae in one queen cell?

    Clearly two larvae, but how?

    Yes, what you sketch is a cell with 2 larvae. Sometimes the queen will lay 2 just in case.
    But once they develop the worker bees will choose one to work with. They will not allow 2 queens to develop in a single cell.
    Even the worker cells will sometimes have 2 eggs. But they will not allow 2 workers to occupy a single cell either. So
    don't worry about that. Hopefully they will sort that out for you later on. Keep an eye on that cell at day 4 to see if only
    one remaining.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    218

    Default Re: Two larvae in one queen cell?

    Just had a look and while I found that cell, I'm unsure of just what I saw now, I added a bad iPhone pic of it to the original post, but its not going to tell you much. I do know I have a capped queen cell now (different frame) so I think this colony will be queen right again soon.

    Interesting to see the process of supersedure though. I was sure that after I split the colony and didn't see any capped brood it was time to order a queen then I found the QC a couple of days later, but still no capped brood, so Im guessing they didn't take to the new emergency queen and told her as much......

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,732

    Default Re: Two larvae in one queen cell?

    Make sure that the old queen and the newly hatched virgin queen do not mix inside the same hive.
    Otherwise you might loss both if they fight. Or if the old queen swarmed then you will loss your bees
    as well.
    Or you can transfer this capped queen cell into a nuc if the original queen is still inside this hive. That
    way they are separated and not fight. Is the original queen still inside this hive or she is gone now?
    If not then you can let this virgin queen to become a laying queen within a month to head up this hive.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    218

    Default Re: Two larvae in one queen cell?

    The original old queen went with a split near a month back, then I left this hive well alone for about two weeks came back to check on progress (hoping to see my first virgin queen really), but could see or find her and there was an ever dwindling number of capped brood cells. So I figured I just didn't find her, so come back in a couple of days to have another look. That was when I started to see new queencups being built. I figured that was really odd so I started inspecting more often (about 2-3days apart) and then I see the cells with larvae in them. All told about 7 cells are with larvae now, one is capped.

    http://i1339.photobucket.com/albums/...ps9d6bc863.jpg

    So I figure I wait out the next 14 or so days and see if I start to see eggs, if not it's newspaper time and back in with the old queen I guess.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,732

    Default Re: Two larvae in one queen cell?

    I see, very clear to me now. Why can't you put a new laying queen with this hive then? You cannot
    get a hold of a new one? Because the intention is to split this hive in the beginning, you might as
    well get a new queen to continue with it. Or better yet, don't newspaper combine them. Use a frame of eggs from the old
    queen so they can make more queen cells. But this will slow you down another month or so before you see
    any laying queen. If pic 863.jpg is now inside this hive then in 2 weeks you should have a new virgin queen.
    Maybe sooner if it was capped before your last hive check. If you have more than 2 queen cells in this hive
    then put in mini queen cages so they will not fight after hatching. This will same all your virgin queens as well.

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