What to do with laying workers in January?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Location
    Winston-Salem, NC
    Posts
    424

    Default What to do with laying workers in January?

    So I used Formic acid a few months back, and the queen swarmed off, I went to replace it and they wouldn't accept it, then I noticed a few larvae, so I figured a virgin queen had returned. Fast forward to now, and it's full of drone brood.
    Should I shake them out on the next warm day in front of the other hives? or what? here's the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7D_T14ZPgJw
    NCSBA Certified Beekeeper - my Youtube Vlog
    https://www.youtube.com/c/BackyardBeesNC

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Aylett, Virginia
    Posts
    4,294

    Default Re: What to do with laying workers in January?

    Stop feeding them and let the hive die. There is nothing worth salvaging and shaking them out now poses a potential risk to your other hives. Use the woodenware and resources to start a new hive in another two months. If they are still around, maybe consider shaking them out then. Soapy water is always an option.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Location
    Winston-Salem, NC
    Posts
    424

    Default Re: What to do with laying workers in January?

    Yeah, I ought to have 8-9 hives in the spring, It'll just make for faster growing splits.
    NCSBA Certified Beekeeper - my Youtube Vlog
    https://www.youtube.com/c/BackyardBeesNC

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Location
    Wharton, Texas, USA
    Posts
    238

    Default

    I had a drone layer after a month she started laying normal. Damndest thing definitely not the norm. I like formic but I just can only muster the courage to do it in spring when the bees are stronger and I know re queening is easy. I use apivar or oa in winter.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Location
    Winston-Salem, NC
    Posts
    424

    Default Re: What to do with laying workers in January?

    There are no eggs all over like laying worker, could be a queen just starting to lay, I'll just leave em be for awhile.
    NCSBA Certified Beekeeper - my Youtube Vlog
    https://www.youtube.com/c/BackyardBeesNC

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Aylett, Virginia
    Posts
    4,294

    Default Re: What to do with laying workers in January?

    If she was poorly mated and had been laying worker brood but is now only laying drones, there is no going back. I had several nucs that went that way. All eventually died out.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

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