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Thread: Queenless

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Jefferson Co, TX
    Posts
    700

    Default Queenless

    Did a hive check today.

    They are capping honey and stacking up the pollen. No eggs or larvae visible so I am likely queenless. I will wait until this weekend to check a final time just to make sure and order new queen on Monday. Have 10 frames, but not all are completely built, so about 5 frames of honey, think there were 3 with pollen mixed in with honey. There would be 2 frames with no or little honey.

    Golden rod going to be strong, and some are still just starting to flower. Would it be worth it trying to purchase 2 queens and split the hive into two nucs? It is expected to be in 70s for 3 weeks and mid 50s at night. I have raw honey I can feed them to allow them to stack up stores or feed through winter. Winters are not harsh, so I expect I will see them out and foraging, so feeding honey in the miller feeder is an option.

    Hate to loss that queen, they are gentle.

    So do I try just one queen

    Or do the split and get two queens.

    And any hints for a late season requeen. Remember we are still foraging hard here on goldenrod.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Troy, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Queenless

    Maybe try a nuc and keep bout queens??
    Does TX over winter nucs?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    St Louis, Missouri
    Posts
    30

    Default Re: Queenless

    Maybe a nuc would save the queen..

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Elkton, Giles, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    1,346

    Default Re: Queenless

    mmp,
    You didn't get much help on your question. I'm not going to give you a recommendation, either. It's your call. In your location, either choice is workable.

    On the Gulf coast, you will likely have flying weather in every week, all winter. That means you can keep them growing all winter if you choose to do so. If you are prepared to feed two colonies through the winter (growing) you might spend as much on sugar as the cost of another package in the spring.

    Whichever you choose, I wouldn't commit just yet. There is a period in the supersedure process where there is no remaining brood in any stage, and the replacement queen has not started laying yet. Tricky period - the virgin is smallish and hard to spot, even in a small brood nest. And if they are truely queenless (Flunked SS 101) the stepping forward of laying workers to fill the void is likely within a couple weeks.

    I would go with the odds at this point and give them at least another week and maybe two. SS is quite reliable, but not foolproof. (About 95% - by my records)
    Again, your call.
    Walt
    Last edited by wcubed; 10-27-2013 at 01:12 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Jefferson Co, TX
    Posts
    700

    Default Re: Queenless

    Was camping all weekend, got in and peeked to see the hive, still warm outside and they were all sweet. Looking at a frame and bingo, got larvae.



    And some capped cells. \\

    Well I will look closer on Tuesday to see if they are drones (from laying workers) didn't want to look to close at things as I just didn't have time.

    One way or another I might get this thing producing larvae.

    Thanks

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Davie, Florida, USA
    Posts
    826

    Default Re: Queenless

    If you have capped brood, you should be able to tell immediately if they are drones. Drone brood looks like somebody put a Kix cereal or a pea on top if the comb. Worker brood is flat.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Jefferson Co, TX
    Posts
    700

    Default Re: Queenless

    Quote Originally Posted by Bees In Miami View Post
    If you have capped brood, you should be able to tell immediately if they are drones. Drone brood looks like somebody put a Kix cereal or a pea on top if the comb. Worker brood is flat.
    I was so shocked I didn't even pay attention, so just carefully slide the frame back in. Will check this week on a warm afternoon. Thanks again for the all the guidance in the forum and by PM. Much appreciated.

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