Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    10

    Default Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    Today I received two packages of bees. One package had a queen, and the other queen was dead.
    I didn't know what to do so I just installed everything like the queen was in the cage. I have been trying to contact my supplier, but they will not return my call and I don't know what to do, I have called every place I could find online to get a queen overnighted, but everyone is out of queens for at least a few weeks. My question is what do I do, and what is going to happen if I have no queen in one hive? Are they going to move the hive with a queen?
    Today is my first day of beekeeping and I though I was prepared for anything, any help would be great.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Nassau County, New York, USA
    Posts
    461

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Bpierce View Post
    Today I received two packages of bees. One package had a queen, and the other queen was dead.
    I didn't know what to do so I just installed everything like the queen was in the cage. I have been trying to contact my supplier, but they will not return my call and I don't know what to do, I have called every place I could find online to get a queen overnighted, but everyone is out of queens for at least a few weeks. My question is what do I do, and what is going to happen if I have no queen in one hive? Are they going to move the hive with a queen?
    Today is my first day of beekeeping and I though I was prepared for anything, any help would be great.
    If the queen is not released from the cage, put a tape over candy end to delay release. Dump all bees into one hive and hang queen cage in the middle of the cluster. Remove tape a day or two later.

    If the queen has been released, put a newspaper over that hive, make a few small holes in the paper, then dump queen-less bees over it and let them combine with the queen-right bees slowly. Once you get the queen you can split them and start another hive.
    USDA Zone 7a - elevation 148 feet

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Dover, NH
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    Did you try Dave Lewcon in Uxbridge MA? He usually has some queens. Might be a bit of a trip depending on where you are in CT.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Lamar Co. Alabama, USA
    Posts
    4,141

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    Welcome to BeeSource. Sorry it's under the conditions you have.

    Do you have a mentor or are you a member of a local bee club? If yes, someone may be able to supply a frame with young brood to give the queen less hive the ability to raise a queen.

    WillH's advice is a good plan if you can't get a frame of young brood. Keep us informed of your situation.
    "Sometimes the best action, with bees, is no action at all."

  6. #5
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    I did email the president of the bee club who is pretty much useless and horrible with communication. He responded with just the name of a place in California, and nothing more. I called them and they are three weeks out for overnighting queens.
    I finally got I touch with my supplier who assured me that the queen would only be dead if she had been killed by another queen in the package. He told me to install everything as I normal would queen cage an all and wait a few days. He also promised that he would help me run some test if I found no eggs in a few days and would replace the queen of he really thought she wasn't there. He was nice and reassuring. I'll just have to learn to be patient.
    All of your ideas may be put into play if I feel I'm being taken advantage of by my supplier. I like the idea of get a frame of brood from someone, or combining and splitting if I don't need to requeen.
    Thank you all for you're help and suggestions.
    🐝

  7. #6
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    This is a very good idea. I'm going to wait a few days before I do anything just to be positive she's not in the hive. But this would be good because it wouldn't mess anything up if she was.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    Kinda far, I'm in southern CT. But it might be my only choice. Thank you for your help

  9. #8
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    This is a great idea. Thank you.
    My supplier seems to think I had two queens in one package and the one in the cage was killed. I'm going to wait to see if this is the case, but this might be what I do if I find no evidence of eggs in a few days.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Bergen County, NJ
    Posts
    907

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    Try Hudson Vally Bee Supply (Kingston NY), IF you end up needing a queen and have to purchase. Last week I called them and they had queens on hand.
    I am in Northern NJ and my club recently sent an email advertising queens. I can put you in touch with them if need be.


    PS: I dont have any association with them.

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Location
    Ozark, AL
    Posts
    834

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    That is a rough place to be. If you still want to try and replace the queen now check the "For Sale" area here on beesource as their were several folks on there with bees for sale now. Maybe one could overnight you a new queen. Hate to have to pay for a package and then still invest in a new queen but that give you another option.
    Good luck.

  12. #11
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    Thank you. I'm new to beekeeping and bee source so thank you for telling me about the "for sale" section.

  13. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    53,942

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    I have never found a dead queen in a healthy package unless there was a queen loose in the package.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 42y 40h 39yTF

  14. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Pepperell, MA.
    Posts
    6,176

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Bpierce View Post
    This is a great idea. Thank you.
    My supplier seems to think I had two queens in one package and the one in the cage was killed. I'm going to wait to see if this is the case, but this might be what I do if I find no evidence of eggs in a few days.
    I'd listen hard to your supplier.
    "My wife always wanted girls. Just not thousands and thousands of them......"

  15. #14
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    5,486

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    If anything, once the queen right package starts laying, grab the first comb you find with some eggs and young larva, brush the bees off and give it to the queenless hive so they can make a queen and raise some brood. Also, don't freak out, give it 4-5 days, then check the hive for any brood.

  16. #15
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Connecticut
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    10

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    Very smart. This seems like the most logical thing to do. I hadn't even thought of this. Thank you, I will try to be patient.

  17. #16
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Deer Lodge MT
    Posts
    859

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by JRG13 View Post
    If anything, once the queen right package starts laying, grab the first comb you find with some eggs and young larva, brush the bees off and give it to the queenless hive so they can make a queen and raise some brood. Also, don't freak out, give it 4-5 days, then check the hive for any brood.
    This is a great idea. What ever happens you will need to let us know.

  18. #17
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    Update: I waited 1 week and checked in my new package hive, and the one that had the dead queen in the queen cage but maybe "another queen in the package" now has some drawn out comb, and 3 emergency queen cells as well, obviously empty.
    I tried to call my supplier and the phone rang once and was sent to voice mail. I left a calm, nice message about what I had observed and asked him to please send me a new queen ASAP and to give me a call back... I won't hold my breath for a quick call back.
    I won't buy from this guy again.

  19. #18
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    Update: the queen has arrived!
    I finally put a frame of brood etc into my Queenless hive. I also got in touch with my supplier who overnighted me a new queen.
    Due to the long wait I created a laying working situation so I took all of the frames across my lawn and shook them out one by one removing every last bee in hopes of removing the laying worker(s). I returned the empty frames to the hive and added the new queen.
    I think I am finally back in the game (knock on wood). Thank you to everyone who helped me with suggestions and guidance. I'm 3 weeks into beekeeping and I feel like I have delt with things I hadn't planned on doing so early on.
    I read a quote somewhere that said "their are no mistakes in beekeeping, just I oppertunity for learning". This sums my experience up, because man has it been a baptism by fire for me.

  20. #19
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Brookville, PA
    Posts
    338

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    I hope you mean you shook all of the bees out of the hive and then installed the queen (still in her queen cage)!

  21. #20
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Queenless Package arrived today- Help!!!

    Yes. I shook all of the bees out of the hive and then installed the queen who was still in her queen cage.

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