Queen cell failures?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Sioux City, IA,USA
    Posts
    66

    Question Queen cell failures?

    This is my third year raising a few queens. I started with nicot system but have grafted a few into nicot cups also. Never more than 6 cells completed out of 20. I ended up with 6 good cells out of first batch which I put in cell builder.
    The second batch was from nicot system I place 38 cups in cell builder. When 12 cells were started to be drawn and fed I moved them into a queen right finisher (1st attempt at using a finisher).
    They should have emerged yesterday and today. Well nothing happened so began dissecting dud cells what I found was dead white larvae.
    So I am seeking possible answers.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    9,985

    Default Re: Queen cell failures?

    There is a disease called black queen cell virus. Could be your cell finishers have a heavy infestation of it. Recently dead queen larvae affected with the disease can be largely white.

    But the poor acceptance of your new cells could indicate any of the following. - not enough bees, bees not fed and conditioned well enough, wrong time of the season, not left queenless long enough prior to being given the cells.

    And a common one, incorrectly set up cell finisher. IE, trying to finish cells between 2 honey frames, stuff like that.

    There are other things can go wrong, but those are the most likely contenders.
    "Every viewpoint, is a view from a point." - Solomon Parker

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Sioux City, IA,USA
    Posts
    66

    Default Re: Queen cell failures?

    Yes the larvae were white. I put the larvae in two different queen right hive finishers. Queens that were left in the starter until capped emerged.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    9,985

    Default Re: Queen cell failures?

    Were the dead queen larvae pupated or not pupated?
    "Every viewpoint, is a view from a point." - Solomon Parker

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Sioux City, IA,USA
    Posts
    66

    Default Re: Queen cell failures?

    The larvae were pupated.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    Default Re: Queen cell failures?

    OK well it's not black queen cell virus.

    Maybe they chilled?
    "Every viewpoint, is a view from a point." - Solomon Parker

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Sioux City, IA,USA
    Posts
    66

    Default Re: Queen cell failures?

    I can't imagine they chilled it has been pretty warm and there were a lot of bees in the finisher. I moved open 3 frames brood up above a queen excluder to get nurse bees up into the finisher. Wish I had taken a few pictures.
    It did solve one problem I was anticipating I was thinking where am I going to get enough brood to start this many mating nucs. LOL Now I am thinking do I start over and try again or wait until next year. Maybe I would learn something if I tried again but my starter is getting quite aged by now a little over month since I shook the nurse bees into it. I will look and see if there is still any brood emerging from the capped cells in it.

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    53,669

    Default Re: Queen cell failures?

    It's getting pretty late in the season. Maybe they abandoned them and didn't keep them warm enough. My bees have lost interest in queen rearing in the last few weeks.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 42y 40h 39yTF

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