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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    lee county, fl, usa
    Posts
    870

    Default first time queen castle use

    Two days ago I went into my best hive (production and gentleness) to collect the existing queen and use her to requeen an aggressive hive and then let the 1st hive build queen cells.

    Well, too late. I knew one of my hives had recently swarmed but wasn't sure which one. It was this one. I found frames that have capped queen cells on them, couldn't find any queen. I quick got my new Brushy Mnt queen castle set up and put a frame of capped queen cells (2 cells were on each frame) and a frame of honey/pollen and it's adhering bees into 2 sections. None of the frames were as packed with bees as I'd like. I set up two sections of the castle this way.

    Later I put a piece of tape over the entrances and have the box on bricks for ventilation. Yesterday I tried shaking bees from a different hive into one of the castles after misting with sugar syrup. That narrow area, seems more bees flew out or missed than went in.

    As the cells are already capped, do I need to be concerned about amount of bees in there at this point?
    Can I remove the tape today?
    Any easier way of adding bees in the future?

    I'm expecting some failure with this being my first try at my own queen rearing. Any advice is appreciated.

    My area has a very good flow on right now and it should continue for another couple weeks if a storm doesn't ruin it. My strong hives have drawn and half filled medium supers in about 1 week time. All my hives have plenty of drones.
    Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones. Prvb 16:24
    March 2010; +/- 30 hives, TF

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Jefferson Co, TX
    Posts
    700

    Default Re: first time queen castle use

    Good Luck with the storm, hope it just brings moderate rain and winds at the worst. Would rather see it just fizzle out. Had a local just tell me how they set their hive ups when storm are targeting the area so the bees might escape and the hive are still in place when the water leaves.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Reno, NV
    Posts
    3,062

    Default Re: first time queen castle use

    When I am adding bees to my castle I am only expecting the nurse bees to remain. the foragers can make their way back home. I like to add capped brood fraems with the bees that are on it. I then feed the compartment.
    I also do not move queen cells to the compartment. I incubate them and add emerged virgins later. So I suppose my easier way to transfer bees is to do it while they are still in their cells. It takes far fewer bees to tend to a virgin than it does a queen cell. There is far less chance of robbing when the compartment does nto have much to be robbed of. and by the time the queen has emerged, been introduced and mated the compartment is busting at the seams with bees.
    Stand for what you believe, even if you stand alone.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Baden Wurtemburg Germany
    Posts
    162

    Default Re: first time queen castle use

    A pity you lost you best queen, but very lucky to have caught the new queens in their cells. If the frames had older capped brood (Dark caps) then they should start emerging soon, this will boost the populations. How many frames of Bees/brood did you add to each section? More than one and you should be OK. As you say you added honey and pollen so I would be inclined to leave it all well alone. Do your math and work out when your first inspection should be, You can always add more brood/bees then if needed.

    Stephen
    Good luck

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    lee county, fl, usa
    Posts
    870

    Default Re: first time queen castle use

    There wasn't much capped brood left on the frames with queen cells. The tips were dark so it won't be long for them to emerge. I will take the tape off tomorrow in hope of keeping foragers. One frame of remaining brood, one of honey/pollen. Maybe 300 bees each. I have it right outside my patio door and will be watching carefully for robbing.

    I will leave it alone for a week at least, right? When I do go in, I could move the divider boards and add brood frames to each side as I've only used 2 sections at this time. I will make more queens in spring. I'm only making them for my own hives which I have about 28 including nuks.

    Yes I was pretty bummed that my good queen was gone.
    Thanks for the replys.
    Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones. Prvb 16:24
    March 2010; +/- 30 hives, TF

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    McClure, OH
    Posts
    1,017

    Default Re: first time queen castle use

    Since you are on the flow, you have better chances of your castle keeping it together (and not getting robbed out). You could possibly add another frame of emerging bees once the virgins emerge if you feel they are too light on population.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Bertie County,NC
    Posts
    870

    Default Re: first time queen castle use

    Quote Originally Posted by bevy's honeybees View Post
    There wasn't much capped brood left on the frames with queen cells.
    I would be a little concerned about the fact that there are not many capped brood on the frames with the queen cells. The queen will emerge at about 16 day....where workers will emerge at 21 days. So the frames with queen cells on them should have "some"(maybe even a significant amount) workers on them that will not emerge for around 5 days after the queen.

    Good luck

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    lee county, fl, usa
    Posts
    870

    Default Re: first time queen castle use

    Quote Originally Posted by marshmasterpat View Post
    Had a local just tell me how they set their hive ups when storm are targeting the area so the bees might escape and the hive are still in place when the water leaves.
    Last year at this time we had a hurricane headed our way and I put a cinder block on top of each hive. My hive stands are also cinder blocks, 2 high for each hive so I don't have to bend so much. I'm in Lehigh Acres which is a bit inland, and our elevation is 30 ft above sea level. We get some flooding but so far nothing serious. It was the wind I was most concerned about.

    The storm coming now will miss us, though we might get a bunch of rain which ruins the nectar flow.
    Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones. Prvb 16:24
    March 2010; +/- 30 hives, TF

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