Re: Sucsessful Queen Introduction tips.
My question is...how long can a virgin be confined?
I would say as soon as possible to go release her because within 3 days after hatching her hormones changes and the workers cannot recognize her anymore to say she is an intruder. When allow to freely roam from day one she gradually spread her scent all over the hive to enable her to secure a position in the hive. I recently got some virgins that got balled by the foreign bees that I put in their mating nucs. So I caged them for one day. The next day I released them using Karo syrup spread all over the frame of bees and the virgins. The one that survived this ordeal I let her be and everything is normal again. She was able to secure her position and got mated. It was a bit past due for her mating flight too. I was worried for a while since they've been balling her for almost 3 days already. So bring a bottle of syrup to dip the virgin in if they continue to balled her after you release her from the cage. The more syrup you put on the better but don't cover her head only her body all over and the other bees on the frame. If they accepted her then you don't need to syrup her up.
Good luck on this one!
Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?