forced brood break
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    NW Florida
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    1,141

    Default forced brood break

    I hope my bees take a brood break this summer, but if not, is there a good way to convince them to do so? Is this something that can be bred for? I like the idea of a brood break for varroa control. How long does the break need to be to knock down the varroa numbers?
    Beek since 2016: Hardiness Zone 9a: in NW Florida

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Covington County, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    1,521

    Default Re: forced brood break

    You can trap her in a push-in cage for 14 days within the hive. This will allow a very brief brood break.

    Another method: If you have a honey super that is full of honey and/or capped frames, put her in the honey super on a single frame of drawn comb above a queen excluder. At the end of 14 days, remove the excluder and the frame of drawn comb she has been laying in. I would put the frame of drawn comb in the freezer in order to kill the mites that have migrated to that single frame. This may work better with a drawn frame of drone comb, as mites seem to prefer drone comb.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    NW Florida
    Posts
    1,141

    Default Re: forced brood break

    psm When do you usually time it?

    What are the chances that the girls will draw out queen cells in the brood box when the queen is moved to the supers?
    Beek since 2016: Hardiness Zone 9a: in NW Florida

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Covington County, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    1,521

    Default Re: forced brood break

    Quote Originally Posted by Jadeguppy View Post
    psm When do you usually time it? I do it about now. When the nectar flow comes to an end and I am waiting on the bees to cap off the frames. In full disclosure, I do this in conjunction with an OAV treatment after the 14 day sequestration of the queen. I release her back to the brood box and pull the honey supers off before I OAV. I realize that this is the TF forum, but wanted to give you the full picture of what I am doing when you ask about timing.

    What are the chances that the girls will draw out queen cells in the brood box when the queen is moved to the supers? That could happen, but it has not happened to me or to another beekeeper I know well who does this much more than I do. I keep the queen on the super that sits on top of the brood nest (separated only by the excluder). If you put her in an upper super, when more than one super was on, that may cause enough separation from her and the brood nest to encourage queen cells. A check of the brood nest for QCs after the first week of sequestration should ease your mind about that.
    nm

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