Im Rusty
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Thread: Im Rusty

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Covington, Ga, USA
    Posts
    1,548

    Default Im Rusty

    Hey All, been a couple of years since i have been on. Needless to say i still have one hive. Today I saw something I never have seen before. My current hive is a deep and 5 mediums. And they are SLAMMED in with that. I went purusing them today and most of the honey supers had drones, and most were a 50/50 drone to honey mixture. I pulled off box 6 and looked at 5 and BAM, queen cell, dead center of frame 5...interested, i dug further. in box 4, center of frame 6, a single capped queen cell. remember that there was a TON of drone and rone comb. Still a 60/40 honey to capped drone. Got down to box 3, started to see pattern brood, nice tight, capped as it should be, spotty drone and drone comb. Box 2 was like it should be with a single queen cell on frame 4, lots of capped brood. Got to the deep, first frame i pull, there she is in all her glory, butt in a cell. frame 5, dead center was another queen cell.

    SO, this has me a bit puzzled. Like an idiot, I ran out of foundation and put starter strip on the upper boxes. These frames were fully drawn out(some messed up of course) but everything that was drawn was mostly drone comb....and drones.

    Like i said, i am a bit puzzled. When i say this hive is strong, thats an understatment. Those of you that remember me, if any, know that i am not a beginner, was up to 25 hives at one point but i have never, ever had one this strong. Is there a chance that they are so big, that the queens pheremones are too weak to make it to the upper portion of the hive, therefore they had a laying worker. I have had a laying worker before(look up thread Pheremone reboot) and this is what it reminds me of......

    Ok...GO!
    "You laugh at me because I am different, but I laugh at you because you are all the same."

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    10,925

    Default Re: Im Rusty

    > therefore they had a laying worker.

    Laying workers can only lay drone eggs. If you have queen cells in those multiple boxes, its unlikely you have laying workers. It sounds as the hive is preparing to swarm.

    It looks to me like an opportunity to do some splits and build up your hive count.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  4. #3
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Covington, Ga, USA
    Posts
    1,548

    Default Re: Im Rusty

    Good point. Normally I see more cells in preps to swarm. I just split them today. Weird seeing all the drones though. That's what made me ? Myself.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Knox, Pa. USA
    Posts
    5,400

    Default Re: Im Rusty

    It is not uncommon for a colony to increase drone production in preparation for a swarm. I have seen very large colonies do a double swarm back to back in the same day. Bam bam or a day or so apart. One goes with the ruling queen, and one goes with a virgin, I would say prepare yourself. Because even after the split you may still have a swarm.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Covington, Ga, USA
    Posts
    1,548

    Default Re: Im Rusty

    I split them heavily. This evening I plan on shaking some over tonight. I left 2 queen cells and took the other 4 for the split.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
    Posts
    13,203

    Default Re: Im Rusty

    Single queen cells? Are you sure you are not witnessing a supercedure from a queen that ran out of bullets?
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  8. #7
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Covington, Ga, USA
    Posts
    1,548

    Default Re: Im Rusty

    Ace, if she ran out, no one told her. As I said. There was no more than 1 per medium box with the exception of the upper box. I've had hives swarm and seen 10-15 or more q cells. Never this few and so far apart. This one even puzzled me. I broke one open and sure enough....true queen cell. In my layi g worker hive, they had some made, but none full. An increase in drone production is an understatement. The patterns in the lower boxes were as expected for a 1.2 yr old queen.

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
    Posts
    13,203

    Default Re: Im Rusty

    You split them heavily so we will never know what this hive would have resulted in. I am not saying you shouldn't have but left untouched would have been a good experiment.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  10. #9
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Covington, Ga, USA
    Posts
    1,548

    Default Re: Im Rusty

    If this wasn't my one and only. You are right......good experiment. So many drones I cut the frames out...

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