What Color To Mark Swarm Queen?
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  1. #1
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    Apr 2016
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    Default What Color To Mark Swarm Queen?

    I caught a swarm last summer and am thinking of trying my hand at marking her in the spring. But what color do I mark her? I assume she was a year old when I caught her, but who knows? She could have been a queen from a cast swarm. I might just mark her with a bright color just so I can see her, but it got me to wondering if there is any "standard" on this. More curious than anything. Thanks, J

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  3. #2
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    Apr 2017
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    Aylett, Virginia
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    Default Re: What Color To Mark Swarm Queen?

    There is a color convention. Years ending in 2 or 7 were yellow, years ending 3 or 8 are red. You can mark your queens whatever color suites you, but do keep records if you do not use the standard year/color.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Location
    DuPage County Illinois
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    179

    Default Re: What Color To Mark Swarm Queen?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fivej View Post
    I caught a swarm last summer and am thinking of trying my hand at marking her in the spring. But what color do I mark her? I assume she was a year old when I caught her, but who knows? She could have been a queen from a cast swarm. I might just mark her with a bright color just so I can see her, but it got me to wondering if there is any "standard" on this. More curious than anything. Thanks, J
    I have the same situation and plan to mark her yellow even though I think she is older. The color will tell me the year she was caught and the main thing is to know that it is the same queen and not a supercedure or swarm. You will never know the age of a swarm caught queen unless she is marked when you catch her.

  5. #4
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    Apr 2016
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    Default Re: What Color To Mark Swarm Queen?

    Yes, I knew there i a color convention, but am unsure of what color to use. I suppose the year caught makes the most sense. JW, I got a cool little hardbound notebook with a bee on the cover for my birthday and I am going to use that to keep track of my queens. Right now that info is scattered through my journal. I will start keeping track of their age, when I might have requeened, how well they lay and other traits. J

  6. #5
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    Default Re: What Color To Mark Swarm Queen?

    Fivej, I guess I misunderstood the question. I would not use any of the conventional colors, white, yellow, red, green, or blue, and instead opt for something like orange, pink, or silver. Easy to see and not confusing as to year.

    A notebook with a bee on it is very fitting.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    Houston, TX, USA
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    646

    Default Re: What Color To Mark Swarm Queen?

    I use 2 colors, the current and previous years, for swarm and removal queens. Shows as an unknown and approximate years. Queens I raise get a single color.

  8. #7
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    Default Re: What Color To Mark Swarm Queen?

    That's a good idea Texanbelchers. Thanks, J

  9. #8
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    Feb 2015
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    Salt Lake City, UT
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    Default Re: What Color To Mark Swarm Queen?

    When my daughter was a tweenie bopper she wore a bright purple nail polish. She's outgrown that so I now have the purple nail polish. It makes the queen easy to find. Packages and swarms get purple nail polish. If I know the year she gets fluorescent testor model paint. I mark the queen to make her easier to find, not really to track the years. I also write notes on the inside cover.

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  10. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
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    Red Bud, IL, USA
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    1,809

    Default Re: What Color To Mark Swarm Queen?

    You might try marking on a few drones first, they're cheaper but the other guys will tease them in the DCA.
    “The single biggest problem with communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” -George Bernard Shaw

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