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Thread: Requeen?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    87

    Default Requeen?

    I have two hives - one with a new queen from March and one with a queen from May of last year. Until a month or two ago, the hive with the older queen was really kicking butt while the one with the new queen was slow. Lately, the one with the older queen has been slowly dwindling. I just checked yesterday and there were only two frames with a small amount of capped brood on them (I did locate her btw - shes definitely there) and it seems that the number of bees in the hive is slowly decreasing. Now, it is the hottest part of the summer here in Texas - it is VERY hot and dry...but the other hive with the younger queen seems to be doing ok. Its not expanding quickly but there are a good amount of frames with good brood patterns. Does this mean I should requeen? Or might there be another culprit? If i do requeen, will early september be a reasonable time to do this?

    Thanks for your input!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    87

    Default Re: Requeen?

    Anyone have an opinion?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Manning, SC
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    Default Re: Requeen?

    Have you checked the older hive for mites?
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Mt Juliet TN USA
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    136

    Default Re: Requeen?

    Your older queen may just be slow because there is not much to gather and thats what they do when forage gets scarce.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Sacramento,California,USA
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    3,658

    Default Re: Requeen?

    From the info you've given, I'd requeen it myself.
    “When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” – John Muir

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
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    1,718

    Default Re: Requeen?

    I would not requeen just by her slowing down when there is a dearth going on.
    What is the level of their pollen and nectar collection right now? Should I say what is available for them
    out there to forage on.
    There are some queens that will slow down and finally to shut down when no resources are coming in. They will
    start to lay when in the Fall blooms. When the hive is dwindling then not enough bees to cover the broods so she will not lay some more.
    I have 2 hives in a similar situation like yours during this summer dearth going on now. So I feed them
    patty and syrup since the end of July. Now that their population had pick up a little the young foragers are
    bringing in some pollen. Both the Cordovan queen and the Italian queen are laying now that they once slow down
    a bit. The Italian queen had slow down around the middle of July and now recently picking up. I saw 1 out of 5 to
    carry pollen in today. The others are bringing in nectar because I have not been feeding this hive at all. This is a good sign after
    I brushed in one frame of mixed laying workers (LWs) bees in there last week. I did not want to requeen her because she lay big eggs.
    The Cordovan queen is gradually picking up since I removed many of her workers to make up more mating nucs last week. I had since added more bees from
    another hive to balance things out for her. So both hives are recovering all because of the timing in feeding them during a dearth. The Fall should
    be better for more resources coming in.
    Even if you requeen now there have to be sufficient worker bees for the new queen so that the larvae are taken care of. I would just add more bees
    into this hive to condense it into a nuc and feed them a lot to see if she will lay in 2 more weeks to check for new eggs. Hope this helps.
    Gratefulness is the key to a happy lifeIf we are not grateful then we will not be happy since we always want something +

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Cheneyville, Louisiana
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: Requeen?

    BeePro,
    How are you introducing the bees from different hives. I have been keeping bees for 3 years now and worry about them fighting, do you spray with sugar water, or is it ok to just brush them off of the frames as long as you are taking them from brood frames?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    lafargeville ny usa
    Posts
    703

    Default Re: Requeen?

    beepro, post #6 gave a good answer. a couple of hives [small sample] and your local situation makes an exact answer impossible . bees vary a lot hive to hive.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,718

    Default Re: Requeen?

    Quote Originally Posted by Deck III View Post
    BeePro,
    How are you introducing the bees from different hives. I have been keeping bees for 3 years now and worry about them fighting, do you spray with sugar water, or is it ok to just brush them off of the frames as long as you are taking them from brood frames?
    It is easy. I just take one frame at a time to brush in the young nurse bees. With hundreds at a time flooding the hive there is no chance for them to fight.
    The foragers will fly away back to their original hive while the young nurse bees stay. If I find a frame of freshly hatched young bees I will not brush them in but
    instead put the entire frame inside the middle of the nest. A small amount of foragers will fly out the hive but majority of the bees will stay. If you can time
    your hive then you will know when it is the right time to move these freshly hatched bee frames. The fuzzy looking young bees are the ones you are looking for. They will not fight
    with the other bees. Yes, the older foragers will fight no matter what when added to the new hive unless it is a new nuc you are forming. So it is not advisable to put in the forager frame of bees. It is not how long as a beekeeper but how much experiences have you accumulated over these years. I had made many mistakes but also learned a lot too to share with others. Sometimes my infos conflicted with others here but it is o.k. since beekeeping is local anyways. Hope this helps.
    Gratefulness is the key to a happy lifeIf we are not grateful then we will not be happy since we always want something +

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