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  1. #1
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    Default Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    Take my best queen out of her hive and put her in a nuc, with the frame and bees she is on and a feeder. Let the hive build queen cells.
    When they are sealed, swap the frame with queen cells for the he frame I pulled with the queen? Will the hive just take her back, as it is queenless and its their old queen? This seems like a painless way for me to grow a couple queens a year to have on hand for splits or re-queening. But I’ve got a feeling it’s not that easy….

    Next question, If I put her back, and there are more queen cells, am I prompting a swarm, or will she just kill them....

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    Pretty much it's that easy...

    http://bushfarms.com/beesafewgoodqueens.htm
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    Being a complete newb I have a couple of questions of the method described.
    1) Are you literally going to put just one frame in the nuc or will it need to be filled and is so how many Brood, honey and or pollen?
    2) I take it the nuc will be relocated during the time required to get queen cells in the original hive? Or can it be in the same yard, just covered with a branch for a couple of days?
    3) When swapping the queen with her frame back to the original hive and putting the new queen cells into the nuc, do you shake more workers into the nuc?
    4) What is the desired frame make up in this "mating nuc"?

    I'm just getting ready to try to raise a couple of queens and am on "information overload". Thanks

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    I think I missed something or Mr Bush did too. When trying to make a new queen with a frame of bees and brood, you leave the queen with the parent hive. I have done this many times and have had good luck getting the bees to make a queen. I even have a have had several queen cells made by one split nuc. I carefully cut out some queen cells and put them on frames in a queen-less Nuc.
    If a Nuc is queen less for a few days or weeks, and they are given a frame of brood with eggs they will make queen cells.

    Mr. Bush am I correct??

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    There will be more than just one frame of queen cells in the main hive.
    If you put the queen back in without finding and removing ALL started cells, you will be getting a swarm, or getting your good queen killed, or everything will go as you planned, depending on the age of the cells, the flows, the strength of the hive, and other factors. If you are not at least somewhat experienced in beekeeping, I think you are asking for trouble.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    Quote Originally Posted by RayMarler View Post
    There will be more than just one frame of queen cells in the main hive.
    If you put the queen back in without finding and removing ALL started cells, you will be getting a swarm, or getting your good queen killed, or everything will go as you planned, depending on the age of the cells, the flows, the strength of the hive, and other factors. If you are not at least somewhat experienced in beekeeping, I think you are asking for trouble.
    I should have pointed that out,,,I always check for queen cells in all my hives and I make sure there are no other queen cells in my hives.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    Ben, I thought you were giving the example of how you do things as a comparison to what Robbin, the original poster was outlining. I was trying to answer or give comment to her original post of how she was thinking of doing it, not how you would do it.

    I am not Mr. Bush, but as far as your post Ben, yes, you have it right, the bees will make queen cells, most of the time. And, the way you outlined would be a safer and easier way to do it, in my way of thinking, than the way that Robbin was thinking.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    Thanks, I take no offense in your post. I also note that there maybe other queen cells in the hive.

    One of the things I like about this forum is sharing our knowledge and experiences.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Williamsburg, va
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    Has anyone ever developed this as a detailed flow chart? It seems it would really lend itself to one!

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    Not my cup of tea, I am lucky if I remember which hive I did what to. I try to record as much as I can while at the hives. But charts,,no way.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    Are these the correct steps?

    1) Remove queen with brood, honey, pollen to Nuc.
    2) Original hive now queenless and they will make new Queen Cells.
    3) Once queen cells are capped switch out ALL frames with capped queen cells to nucs with brood, honey, pollen and possibly 50/50 syrup (not same nuc as queen is in). Then return queen and her frames to original Hive, making sure ALL queen cells in original hive are either taken out or destroyed.
    3A) Brush or shake more nurse bees into nucs with queen cells.
    4) Wait two weeks and check for eggs from the hopefully mated new queens in the nucs.

    Is that the general idea? Please type SLOWLY with your suggestions as I am a cherry farmer in the 107 degree Sacramento Valley and am moving/thinking SLOWLY these days. LOL

    Thanks for all the good info...these forums are really great for us newbs.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    I would say the timeline would be a bit longer for the new queen to start laying.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    That is exactly how I intend to do it, With the exception of switching all the frames with queen cells. Having said that, I may just do that instead of destroying queen cells. I've got a queen castle with 4 comparments. Might as well take advantage of all frames with queen cells.

    I'm not a she, :-)

    I sure do appreciate all the advice and suggestions. I'm a first year BEEK and I have certainly found my hobby!

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    Why put the queen back? I think it would be easier to move the queen to a nuc wait till cells are capped move all but one or 2 cells from the original hive to other mating nucs and let them do their thing. Don't have to worry about original hive killing the queen

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ben Franklin View Post
    Thanks, I take no offense in your post. I also note that there maybe other queen cells in the hive.

    One of the things I like about this forum is sharing our knowledge and experiences.
    I'm so glad as I did not mean anything offensive.

    Yea, the last few posts would work for making increase. Sounds like a good plan to me.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    >1) Remove queen with brood, honey, pollen to Nuc.

    One frame of brood and one of honey will do, but you can try to get everything if you like.

    >2) Original hive now queenless and they will make new Queen Cells.

    Yes. And the original hive will make a better queen than a nuc because it has more resources and will feed the queen cells better.

    >3) Once queen cells are capped

    I would wait until six days AFTER they are capped. Or ten days after you made them queenless...

    > switch out ALL frames with capped queen cells to nucs with brood, honey, pollen and possibly 50/50 syrup (not same nuc as queen is in). Then return queen and her frames to original Hive, making sure ALL queen cells in original hive are either taken out or destroyed.

    You can leave the queen in the nuc and let it grow (less risky as you may miss a queen cell).

    >3A) Brush or shake more nurse bees into nucs with queen cells.

    Some, yes. If they are two frame mating nucs, one extra frame of brood shaken in will do.

    >4) Wait two weeks and check for eggs from the hopefully mated new queens in the nucs.

    Well, if you put them in right after they were capped it will the three to four weeks... I would have put them in two days before they emerge (10 days after making them queenless) and then two weeks would be a good time to check.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    Thanks for all the good info....my immediate obstacle is ants! LOL....I find it amusing how insects can keep you soooo humble....In the cherries it is the spotted wing drosophila.

    Thanks again

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    I"m worried about my new queen not returning from the mating flight in the main hive. By the time I figure it out, they will have been queenless for about a month. I'd rather take that risk in my nuc or queen castle, where it's easy to find her and easy to see that she is gone. I guess both methods have some risk. But I think returning the queen on the frame I took her out with on the 9th day is the least risky.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    Will be trying this soon.
    Becky aka Turnersville Bees, Member of TN Beekeepers,
    President of CMCBA, Secretary of CCBA

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Is this a safe way to raise a couple of queens.

    You could leave your good queen in the nuc. And divide your hive into mating nuc's with the queen cells.

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