Add laying queen to swarmed hive next day?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    Columbia County, NY
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    28

    Default Add laying queen to swarmed hive next day?

    So one of my hives swarmed today. As sad as it was to see them land so high up in an impossible to navigate cedar tree, it was amazing to witness for the first time.

    My question; I have a few nucs that I made earlier in the season with swarm cells from another hive. Those nucs now have laying queens. Can I combine a laying queen from a nuc with what's left of the swarmed hive and put the queen cells in the nuc? Can I just add the laying queen to the hive if I'm sure I remove all the queen cells? I believe Michael Palmer says introducing a laying queen can be done with no cage... but he's obviously light years beyond me as a beekeeper! Do I need to wait a certain amount of time after they swarmed? I'd like to not have to add the entire nuc, just swap a frame or two for the queen cell frame.

    I know it's a lot of questions, I hope it all makes sense!

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
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    7,861

    Default Re: Add laying queen to swarmed hive next day?

    Of course it all makes sense here. You like to use the short cut method just like me. Beekeeping like farming is
    very uncertain. Sometimes we want the bees to behave to our liking though they do the opposite. In this area I've
    experimented quite a bit. There are several methods I've used with success you it makes any sense to you. 1) Swap
    hive location with the queen right nuc and the queen less hive. Let the queen less hive make their own queen. 2) Put the
    QC frame(s) into a 3rd queen right hive and do a hive swap with the queen right (the mated nuc) hive. 3) Take out all
    cap brood frames to donate to the other hives and put in the queen right nuc hive with a newspaper combine method. There are many more say using a net screen rather than newspaper. So far the easiest way is to put the QCs into a queen right hive. Make sure these QCs do not emerged the next day otherwise the mated queen inside will be doomed for sure. If you choose my QCs into a queen right nuc method then you have to follow the 2 steps sequence otherwise the existing bees in the QCs hive will balled the mated queen after a combine.

    Last night I put these cap cells into a nuc hive with a strong young laying queen. The workers are very protective of her with near perfect laying pattern. Out of 12 nice looking cells made and capped on the frame, one look like about to be emerge since the cell tip got chewed off already. I was afraid that it might come out to kill off the mated queen. So I took a risk to see what will happen next. Added the entire frame with attaching bees into the nuc hive. And after one day....


    Here is the proof:
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by beepro; 06-19-2017 at 01:14 AM.
    Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    KC, MO, USA
    Posts
    4,646

    Default Re: Add laying queen to swarmed hive next day?

    Yes if your sure there are no cells left and they have not started new ones which they will do. If they accept her.

    I would screen shim and combine the whole nuc, place it above a screen on your swarmed hive; remove all the q cells and give them more room. Check in a few days and see if they have made more cells. If none then combine. This will help with queen acceptance and will help suppress any q cell making.

    At the same time you can take any of the q cell and make more nucs to replace the one you're about to use.

    See post #12 Other uses for screened shims;
    https://www.beesource.com/forums/show...orker-Easy-Fix

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    Columbia County, NY
    Posts
    28

    Default Re: Add laying queen to swarmed hive next day?

    Thanks everyone, I always appreciate the advice given so freely!

    I have decided to leave the queen cells and let them raise a new queen. I think there's still time here for them to do it. It's a hive that I started from a nuc toward the end of April. They seemed to be bringing in nectar faster than they were building comb, so I think back filled the brood nest, despite empty frames in the supers. They are lovely queen cells, so I guess I'll give them some time, knowing that I've got a nuc on hand that I can combine with them if the new queen doesn't mate or return.

    The shortcut seemed like such a good idea in the moment! These bees are keeping me on my toes with this swarming! I thought they didn't want to swarm in their first year... err...

    THANKS!

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