Lonely Queen cell
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Southwest Indiana
    Posts
    14

    Default Lonely Queen cell

    I have gone into three different hives this year and found only a queen cell or two and no other brood except a few drone brood about to emerge. That seems odd, as to me it would seem there should be at least some worker brood around in the colony somewhere. I will note something here.
    Two of them were requeening and I was expecting a laying queen just to find one lonely capped queen cell. If there was a new queen that started laying and something happened to her I understand that but absolutely no brood seems strange.
    16 days for queen
    21 days for worker

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Algoma District Northern Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    4,809

    Default Re: Lonely Queen cell

    That queen cell may be a dud. There should be capped worker brood yet at the time of queen emergence.
    Frank

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Derry, New Hampshire
    Posts
    2,295

    Default Re: Lonely Queen cell

    lots more info is needed. you have only 3 hives? new hives or overwintered? pics would probably help if you are not sure what you are looking at
    Terrence

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Southwest Indiana
    Posts
    14

    Default

    I have 17 hives. This is my fourth year.
    One was over wintered and one was a swarm I caught. Trust me I know what I am seeing. The over wintered colony had multiple cells so I broke one open there was a queen pupa for sure so I am letting it play out. will check for eggs this weekend.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    10,079

    Default Re: Lonely Queen cell

    Quote Originally Posted by Honeybeenut View Post
    I have gone into three different hives this year and found only a queen cell or two and no other brood except a few drone brood about to emerge.
    Was that drone brood in drone sized cells or worker sized cells?
    "Every viewpoint, is a view from a point." - Solomon Parker

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Southwest Indiana
    Posts
    14

    Default

    Oldtimer. That I didn't pay close attention too. I do wish I would've taken pictures. The one in my out yard was a couple of weeks ago and decided to just let it play out maybe I get there tomorrow and check on things.
    But the one currently in my home yard I am unsure of. If I want to let it go or take down the cell and give a queen. I have doubts of a viable coming from it.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    10,079

    Default Re: Lonely Queen cell

    OK well if it was normal drone brood in drone sized cells, the likelyhood is that the hive swarmed, the queen cells have hatched and the lid flipped back down and been re sealed which bees sometimes do, the worker brood has all hatched and in a few more days the drones will have hatched. This does not fit time frame wise with you having found a viable queen larva in one of the cells, but that was only in one of the hives?

    If it was drone brood in worker sized cells there is a failing queen or laying workers and the bees are attempting to supersede. If the queen is on the way out she may still lay some worker eggs and you maybe got lucky and the bees have built queen cells from those. However in a hopeless LW hive the bees will build queen cells from unfertilised eggs but they will die around capping time.

    Other than that i don't know, let's see what you find at next inspection.
    "Every viewpoint, is a view from a point." - Solomon Parker

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Southwest Indiana
    Posts
    14

    Default

    the likelyhood is that the hive swarmed, the queen cells have hatched and the lid flipped back down and been re sealed which bees sometimes do, the worker brood has all hatched.
    Old timer you were absolutely correct. That is exactly what find I barely touched the tip of the cell and it popped right off and the cell was empty. So I learned something new. Gave them a laying queen so they should be good to go.
    Thanks all for your advice.

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