Help! Dead queen with package install
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Lilburn, GA, USA
    Posts
    663

    Sad Help! Dead queen with package install

    Hi, y'all,

    I tried to install a package today, but the queen was dead. I am getting a replacement queen a couple of days, but what to do in the meantime?

    I did put the feeder inside the hive, on the other side of a follower board, that has some gaps on the edges and bottom that the bees can get through. I also put a screen over the entrance hole, so they could not leave.

    I can verify that some of them at least are hanging from the top of the hive, but fairly spread out.

    Anything else, I should be doing?

    Thanks,
    Thomas
    My grandfather and great-uncle kept bees and my fiancée's grandfather, too. I want to pass this tradition along.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Isle of Wight, VA
    Posts
    2,748

    Default Re: Help! Dead queen with package install

    Put the queen cage with the dead queen in there. Also, don't you have additional hives? Add a frame of open brood/eggs to the new install. They will start queen cells that you can destroy once the mated queen arrives. (if they don't start queen cells, you had a rouge queen loose in the package)

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Lilburn, GA, USA
    Posts
    663

    Default Re: Help! Dead queen with package install

    Hi, Ruthie,

    thanks for the advice. Unfortunately, I am starting from scratch this year. My friend did give me a caught swarm last week, that's the one I mentioned in another post in the square Lazutin. So I don't have any brood to share.

    I am having my doubts that these ladies will survive the cold until the new queen arrives. Was down in the low 40s last night and will be in the 30s tonight. They were festooning last night, but not in a clump, more spread out. We'll see....

    Quote Originally Posted by ruthiesbees View Post
    Put the queen cage with the dead queen in there. Also, don't you have additional hives? Add a frame of open brood/eggs to the new install. They will start queen cells that you can destroy once the mated queen arrives. (if they don't start queen cells, you had a rouge queen loose in the package)
    My grandfather and great-uncle kept bees and my fiancée's grandfather, too. I want to pass this tradition along.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    53,550

    Default Re: Help! Dead queen with package install

    In my experience, when you have a healthy package with a dead queen it almost always because there is a queen loose in the package. Odds are they are queenright.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 42y 40h 39yTF

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Santa Cruz, CA
    Posts
    336

    Default Re: Help! Dead queen with package install

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    In my experience, when you have a healthy package with a dead queen it almost always because there is a queen loose in the package. Odds are they are queenright.
    Better start searching for a queen!

    As for the temps, you are entirely fine. With or without a queen the bees will cluster and keep warm. 40 is nothing to worry about.

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