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Thread: Queen cups

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
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    schyuler, va
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    207

    Default Queen cups

    New beek with question. I have double deeps 10 frame hive. Have a lot of bees coming in and out. Opened up hive Wednesday found white comb in hive,lots of pollen and nector. Plus like 20 queen cups, they are everywhere. Founded them on middle of frames and on the bottom also. I wasn't expecting all those Qcups . The temp been 70s to 80s day time temp and 50s to 60s nite temp, so is it safe to split and what kind of split would you do? Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Jacksonville, NC
    Posts
    218

    Default Re: Queen cups

    Noticed any larvae in those Qcups? I assume if you called them cups, they are not capped yet?
    I would say with the large bee population, white comb, pollen and nectar coming in, and also the high number of queen cups...your hive might be preparing to swarm.
    I would definitely split...If you like the hive and want to multiply these genetics move some of the frames with the Qcups into nucs, shake a frame of young bees on top, and watch how they develop. It is amazing how during spring flow, these small colonies to be, gather their forces to establish themselves.
    Or, just find the original queen, make a nuc with her, destroy all but 2-3 queen cells in the now queen less original hive and go from there.
    Lots of options...and you have mother nature on your side. For now anyways.

    One hive I have, similar to your situation... I chose to open and watch from the moment they stated the qcups...by the time they capped them, and they had about 35 beautiful Q cells, I took the frames out, cut the cells and placed them in my improvised fridge/incubator. Now they are emerging. I tell you, these swarm queens, are just beautiful and strong. Very hardy little buggers.

    Good luck!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
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    2,921

    Default Re: Queen cups

    Gotta check them for larvae, they'll build cups on new comb as it's a good place for them. Apis, you nuc'ing those queens or selling them?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    schyuler, va
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    207

    Default Re: Queen cups

    Went ahead and found queen and made up nuc with eggs and brood. Plus honey and pollen. Also put a frame feeder in a 8 frame box. One of the queen cups I think had royal jelly in it I think? Hope I did right. but that queens been a good one.Thanks for the reply.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Jacksonville, NC
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    218

    Default Re: Queen cups

    Quote Originally Posted by JRG13 View Post
    Apis, you nuc'ing those queens or selling them?
    Got some more this afternoon...Making nucs like crazy...and practicing some II on the rest...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Jacksonville, NC
    Posts
    218

    Default Re: Queen cups

    Quote Originally Posted by keswickb View Post
    Went ahead and found queen and made up nuc with eggs and brood. Plus honey and pollen. Also put a frame feeder in a 8 frame box. One of the queen cups I think had royal jelly in it I think? Hope I did right. but that queens been a good one.Thanks for the reply.
    Great. Sounds like the q cups are not capped yet since you've noticed royal jelly. In the original hive, that now is queen less, you might want to check in a few days and see how many capped cells you have. I would not leave more than 2-3, especially if the hive is on the original location. All the workers will go to it, and with more queens emerging, chances for swarming are still there.
    Either way, you'll learn a lot.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,288

    Default Re: Queen cups

    If a cup has no larva in it, I would call it a cup and it means nothing. If a cup has a larva in it, I would call it a queen cell, and it means they are raising a queen. If the hive is booming at the time, they are probably swarming. I like to put every frame with a queen cell (not a cup, but one with a larva) in a nuc with a frame of honey and a shake of bees.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Jefferson County, WA, USA
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    132

    Default Re: Queen cups

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    If a cup has no larva in it, I would call it a cup and it means nothing. If a cup has a larva in it, I would call it a queen cell, and it means they are raising a queen. If the hive is booming at the time, they are probably swarming. I like to put every frame with a queen cell (not a cup, but one with a larva) in a nuc with a frame of honey and a shake of bees.
    Would feeding these nucs be necessary if there is a small flow?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, USA
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    5,400

    Default Re: Queen cups

    If there is a flow, and they have foragers, I'd say feeding would be unnecessary. Right now, I'm working hard to remove combs of honey from my nucs and replace them with empty foundationless frames. I'm needing to do this several times per week. Soon, I'm going to need to place second boxes on many of these nucs, so the bees will have room to expand instead of swarm. Nectar/honey flows are wonderful things.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
    Joseph Clemens -- Website Under Constructioni

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