Cutting Queen Cells
Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Branson MO
    Posts
    55

    Default Cutting Queen Cells

    Some people advocate crowding down bees in order to get them into swarm mode, so that they will produce queen cells that can be used to make splits. Has anyone done this before? Also, how do you keep them from leaving before you have a chance to cut cells, since the swarm will often leave when the cells are capped? If you wait until the cells are a day or two from hatching, it seems to me the swarm will be long gone with a large bunch of needed bees.

  2. Remove Advertisements
    BeeSource.com
    Advertisements
     

  3. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Bunker Hill, IL
    Posts
    891

    Default Re: Cutting Queen Cells

    If your wanting to make queen cells for splits, just make the splits and "notch" the frames on a frame of eggs and they will make queens with out the swarm issues.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    England, UK
    Posts
    1,812

    Default Re: Cutting Queen Cells

    Quote Originally Posted by Grappling Coach View Post
    Some people advocate crowding down bees in order to get them into swarm mode, so that they will produce queen cells that can be used to make splits. Has anyone done this before? Also, how do you keep them from leaving before you have a chance to cut cells, since the swarm will often leave when the cells are capped? If you wait until the cells are a day or two from hatching, it seems to me the swarm will be long gone with a large bunch of needed bees.
    I think this is a risky method - I much prefer to make a colony queenless in order to produce q/cells.

    But, if you're sticking with this method - once they've started to make q/cells - you could try putting the queen in a mailing cage until you've cut the cells out. I've never done this, but it might be worth a go.
    LJ
    A Heretics Guide to Beekeeping http://heretics-guide.atwebpages.com/

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    53,922

    Default Re: Cutting Queen Cells

    I like to make them queenless and crowded. That way the timing is predictable (queenless) and the feeding of the queen is well done (crowded).
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 42y 40h 39yTF

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    Houston, TX, USA
    Posts
    646

    Default Re: Cutting Queen Cells

    Quote Originally Posted by little_john View Post
    you could try putting the queen in a mailing cage until you've cut the cells out.
    LJ
    I needed to setup a starter, so I caged the queen in a 3 hole unit. I intended to leave it a week so her eggs were not viable. I got back to the hive to do my graft and they had chewed the queen out and ruined the cage. Fresh eggs all over; grrrr! The best laid plans...

  7. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Algoma District Northern Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    5,239

    Default Re: Cutting Queen Cells

    I think you could accomplish what you want with a snelgrove method II or Taranov swarm. If you remove all the open brood, queen cells, queen, and young bees as as soon as queen cells are seem. The foraging bees will not swarm. The group of bees you remove also has no flying bees so they will not swarm. You would have to place those cells quickly as the bees will start to tear them down. (they have a queen and no foraging bees so they dont want no stinking swarm cells)

    Foraging bees wil start emergency queen cells so you can tear them down a week later (if you dont want emergency cell queens) and put the queen back in.

    Enjambres has done this many times as her anti swarm emergency measure. I have used the Taranov swarm measure to good advantage. Both are a bit unfamiliar methods but they work just like they are supposed to.
    Frank

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Location
    Northern Lower Michigan, USA
    Posts
    895

    Default Re: Cutting Queen Cells

    Quote Originally Posted by Grappling Coach View Post
    Some people advocate crowding down bees in order to get them into swarm mode, so that they will produce queen cells that can be used to make splits. Has anyone done this before? Also, how do you keep them from leaving before you have a chance to cut cells, since the swarm will often leave when the cells are capped? If you wait until the cells are a day or two from hatching, it seems to me the swarm will be long gone with a large bunch of needed bees.
    Coach, you somewhat have a math game to play. an egg hatches in 3 days, a larvae can be up to 3 days old and still made into a queen.
    A queen hatches in 16 days. these are "starting points" some have experiences that are off a day or so each way. So you would want to "Carefully" inspect every 6 days or 5 days looking for "started" queen cells. Once cells are started and before they are sealed you would remove the original Queen. good documentation needs to take place so you do not actually let them swarm. So at the point of "finding queen cells with larvae" you would remove the queen, or remove the cells. IMO removing the Queen and some/most of the field bees best simulates the swarm. if you have good luck you may have several started Q cells and can make some splits.
    some things to keep in mind:
    they may still swarm, once you push them into the swarming impulse unwinding it can prove a interesting task.
    you will need the NUCs, frames ,parts ready, as any inspection could turn into a splitting session.
    IF they do swarm all is not lost you may have several cells and still have some splits, the original queen is generally lost if they swarm.
    EVEN IF the weather sucks, you need to inspect, so make a schedule and try to stick to it. A tarp or something set up for rain may make sense.
    They may not start swarm cells they may just take a brood break.
    Shaking frames with Queen cells is not optimal, the young queen can be damaged.
    having a second hive to tear down could be an advantage, IE on split day the ugly hive is sacrificed to make 6 or 7 splits with the queen cells from the one you squeezed. its 10 more frames of bees to use for the new splits.
    Some of the new queens may be duds or lost during mating etc, add those bees back to one of the weaker splits "after" the queens are laying, 1 frame a day to grow them slowly

    It would certainly be a fun learning experience. I recommend you give it a try

    GG

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    washington, vermont, USA
    Posts
    387

    Default Re: Cutting Queen Cells

    Clip her wing. That way they may try to swarm but can't. However that would sacrifice a queen. There have been a few alternatives offered I would look into those.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •