How many days does a queen stop laying before she swarms?
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  1. #1
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    Default How many days does a queen stop laying before she swarms?

    I have read that a laying queen has to thin down to fly better before swarming and she stops laying. How long before swarming does a queen stop laying? Also, is it true a laying mated queen cannot fly well until she thins down?

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: How many days does a queen stop laying before she swarms?

    I've seen eggs in a hive that has just swarmed with a small larva in a uncapped queen cell. All the swarms I caught right after swarming have queens that look the same as the ones that didn't swarm. They look nothing like a caged queen.

  4. #3
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    Default Re: How many days does a queen stop laying before she swarms?

    My reason for asking is I just had a swarm two days ago and one 12 days ago, both were very small. I caught the second one, but it is too small to survive over winter. even if I feed it. I am not sure if the queen left with it. I checked the original hive 48 hours later and found a nice pattern of eggs so I thought the old laying queen might have stayed in the hive. If I wait four days from the swarm, any of the eggs should have hatched. If I find eggs in four days after the swarm, that would mean there is a laying queen in there?

  5. #4
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    Default Re: How many days does a queen stop laying before she swarms?

    Never seen a swarm without the queen. Would the virgin swarm and the mom stay behind never seen that. Can you get a mated queen this last in the season. My drones have been kicked out for a month already.

  6. #5
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    Default Re: How many days does a queen stop laying before she swarms?

    Sounds like a supercedure swarm.

  7. #6
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    Default Re: How many days does a queen stop laying before she swarms?

    When they swarmed 12 days ago, it was warm enough the check the hive the following day. I did find one opened swarm or supersedure queen cell and many eggs. There are no drones here anymore either. I checked the hive four days later and still many new eggs. Since a new queen could not have mated because there are no drones and, even if there were, she could not start laying that quickly, I assumed the old queen was still in there. I am trying to keep this recent swarm alive in case the old queen is with them and I can try to reintroduce her into the original hive. That old hive is extremely strong for this time of year. I guess it will all depend on whether or not I find eggs in two days. It got down to 40 degrees last night, so the small swarm hive may not have survived the cold.

  8. #7
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    Default Re: How many days does a queen stop laying before she swarms?

    Quote Originally Posted by Slow Drone View Post
    Sounds like a supercedure swarm.
    What exactly is a supercedure swarm? There were two swarms in 12 days. Does the virgin queen leave with a supercedure swarm? Are they usually very small swarms?

  9. #8
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    Default Re: How many days does a queen stop laying before she swarms?

    if its a supersedure the new queen could of been mated long ago

  10. #9
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    Default Re: How many days does a queen stop laying before she swarms?

    Quote Originally Posted by dulley View Post
    What exactly is a supercedure swarm? There were two swarms in 12 days. Does the virgin queen leave with a supercedure swarm? Are they usually very small swarms?
    old queen left new one takes over , small swarms are usually a cast swarm when a virgin takes a swarm away. Two swarm same hive?

  11. #10
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    Default Re: How many days does a queen stop laying before she swarms?

    Supercedure swarms are when a queen is superceded the original queen will eventually leave with a small amount of bees. It's not uncommon to have more than one laying queen after a supercedure I have seen three laying queens in the same hive before. 2 laying queens after a supercedure is the most common. Yes they are small swarms.

  12. #11
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    Default Re: How many days does a queen stop laying before she swarms?

    Quote Originally Posted by Slow Drone View Post
    Supercedure swarms are when a queen is superceded the original queen will eventually leave with a small amount of bees. It's not uncommon to have more than one laying queen after a supercedure I have seen three laying queens in the same hive before. 2 laying queens after a supercedure is the most common. Yes they are small swarms.
    Since I saw eggs in the old hive two days after the second small swarm, could there still be a laying queen in there? I have not seen drones for a month or so. Could the reason that this hive is so unusually strong for this time of year be that there were several laying queen?

  13. #12
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    Default Re: How many days does a queen stop laying before she swarms?

    Quote Originally Posted by dulley View Post
    Since I saw eggs in the old hive two days after the second small swarm, could there still be a laying queen in there? I have not seen drones for a month or so. Could the reason that this hive is so unusually strong for this time of year be that there were several laying queen?
    The answer to both questions is yes. Just because you don't see drones in your hives doesn't mean there are no drones.

  14. #13
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    Default Re: How many days does a queen stop laying before she swarms?

    The queen cuts back on laying preceeding the swarm. She may still lay some eggs the day she leaves... just not so many.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 42y 40h 39yTF

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