queen excluder or not?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
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    Seattle, WA
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    41

    Default queen excluder or not?

    Somebody please help me. When do I know to put a queen excluder ? If I choose not to use it, what do I need to do? I use 8 medium supers, all same size.

    Thanks!

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Bay Minette, AL. USA
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    224

    Default Re: queen excluder or not?

    just add your supers when needed, have two for your brood nest at least. I would suggest to let the bees do what the bees do. They will sort out what they need and leave the rest to nature. I got mine from Don in Georgia and asked him about excluders, which he does not use, and his answer was "It can shorten up the bees life expectancy by up to 50% from having to squeeze through it from day to day." Wear and tear on bees.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
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    seiling oklahoma U.S.A.
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    41

    Default Re: queen excluder or not?

    I myself do not use one .....they do what they wish its there house not mine .

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Lake county, Indiana 46408-4109
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    3,533

    Default Re: queen excluder or not?

    I vote NOT but lots of folks have good luck with them I dont.
    Ed, KA9CTT profanity is IGNORANCE made audible
    you can`t fix stupid not even with duct tape

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Evansville, IN
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    3,388

    Default Re: queen excluder or not?

    Use of queen excluders is a personal preference, and success probably depends on location and nectar sources, like everything else in beekeeping.

    I would not put one on under undrawn foundation -- too much chance the bees will ignore the foundation, considering the excluder to be the top of the hive. Wait until they have drawn comb and started to store nectar in the frames before putting an excluder on.

    Joseph Clemens has good luck with an entrance above the excluder which sits on top of the brood nest, honey supers above.

    We don't use them, at least so far, and other than some scattered drone brood in the lower honey supers because there isn't enough drone comb in the main hive, have had no issues with brood in the honey supers. Already extracted a shallow this year, probably going to extract another this weekend. Busy year.

    Peter

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Lavaca county, Texas
    Posts
    494

    Default Re: queen excluder or not?

    Honeyman and I are shoulder to shoulder on this one. My bees wouldn't even draw comb with one on. Without, they naturally build brood in one box, and honey in another.

    Some bees care, and some bees don't. Follow the bees and don't try to make them do only what YOU want them to do.

    Good luck!
    Summer

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Tulsa OK. USA
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    833

    Default Re: queen excluder or not?

    Put that excluder on now!!!!! On the far back shelf in the basement and forget it for a couple of years. I have some and NEVER use them but may someday, now I let the bees do their thing and sometimes I get brood in the first honey super but it hurts nothing and often hatches out and they back fill with honey. Jim
    Stop and smell the flowers, 50,000 ladies can't be wrong
    [email protected]

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Phoenixville, PA
    Posts
    575

    Default Re: queen excluder or not?

    I crush and strain cut comb foundation. Michael Bush got me going on that. I prefer not to have the queen up there laying and when that happens, I put the comb with drones (yes, I've only found drone comb in my super) out for the girls to reclaim the honey and the birds to feed chicks. One year I think workers started laying up there. I let the girls reclaim the honey from the strained crush and they leave me with clean virgin wax.

    I've had most success by putting the super with foundation and waiting until they build comb before installing the excluder. Once they made an investment, they most often ignore the excluder thereafter.

    I like crush and strain because you don't need a $300 extractor even though cut comb foundation costs near fifty cents a sheet,. Because Our flow is short, swarms and other debacles, my harvests are not huge. IMHO, an extractor is a big expense for small scale and personal consumption. Yea, cheaper extractors can be had and but I suspect you get what you pay.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Evansville, IN
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    3,388

    Default Re: queen excluder or not?

    The way to keep drone brood out of the super is, I believe, to provide some down in the brood nest. A frame of drone comb in position 2 and 9 will let them make all they want in the spring while not doing it in the honey supers and between boxes.

    When you have four or five supers to extract, and extractor is wonderful. It's nice even for a single shallow super, especially since the drawn comb goes right back on the hive. However, $300 is quite a bit of money all at once. We borrow one, but if this hobby comes to anything, will probably have to buy one, and stainless steel ain't cheap.

    Peter

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    St. Clements, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: queen excluder or not?

    Queen excludes are useful for finding the queen, restricting the queen to a few frames so you know the age of the larva for breeding and that sort of work.

  12. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Victor, New York, USA
    Posts
    36

    Default Re: queen excluder or not?

    Doing my first experiment with NOT using an excluder under my medium super and today found a bunch of nice capped brood (not drones) in one of of 7 frames, the other 6 frames full of honey but not quite sealed enough to extract. I want that honey, so what do I do? I'm afraid if I move the 6 frames to a higher super and replace with 6 undrawn medium frames in with the brood frame, that the bees won't move up to finish the honey frames. Does this make sense?

  13. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Fairfield County, Connecticut, USA
    Posts
    4,265

    Default Re: queen excluder or not?

    Someone might be interested in reading this:

    http://bjornapiaries.com/equipmentmanagement.html
    BeeCurious
    Trying to think inside the box...

  14. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Suffolk, VA
    Posts
    4,225

    Default Re: queen excluder or not?

    Please use the search function as this is one of the most debated issues in basic beekeeping. Reading all the threads will keep you busy for several hours. Digest the material and then make your own decision. Requesting for a yes or no answer is probably not in your best interest.

  15. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Johnson City, TN
    Posts
    381

    Default Re: queen excluder or not?

    I don't use them, I have two that I bought when I first started. I heard an old timer call them honey excluders after I bought them. Never have tried them. I just let the bees do what they want, if theres brood on the frame I leave that frame one alone. Eventualy the brood will leave and they will narrow thier pattern to the lower boxes. But everyone has thier own method.
    All beekeepers can agree on one thing, and that one thing is, that all beekeepers can't agree on one thing.

  16. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Seneca, SC
    Posts
    829

    Default Re: queen excluder or not?

    I use one on the bottom of my shaker box. I use one between my smoke-up box and the hive I am shaking bees out of. I have one built into my cloake board. I don't use them to keep the queen out of the honey supers. My honey production hives brood chambers are two to three deeps. If the queen lays in the medium supers on top of that it is just a little brood that when it hatches the bees will fill with honey. I could not keep bees without excluders though.

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