Beesource Beekeeping Forums banner

1 - 9 of 9 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
648 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
When I did my last batch all but one got balled. I didn't realize it until I was placing the last one and I could hear her "screaming". I dug her out of the hive and got the ball away from her. She promptly flew off into some brush. The only one that didn't get balled is still in the cage. I want to get her out but don't want to lose my last queen I produced for the year.

She's been in there for 4 days now and the new nuc is still all over the cage and I can't shake them off. I believe that's a sign they don't want her. She should have gone on flights Fri/Sat but is still caged. I'm not sure how to do this one.

The other nucs are all making a queen. I assume they will be too late but I'm going to let them go and later do some combines if it looks like a lost cause. Winter is coming.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,333 Posts
When I did my last batch all but one got balled. I didn't realize it until I was placing the last one and I could hear her "screaming". I dug her out of the hive and got the ball away from her. She promptly flew off into some brush. The only one that didn't get balled is still in the cage. I want to get her out but don't want to lose my last queen I produced for the year.

She's been in there for 4 days now and the new nuc is still all over the cage and I can't shake them off. I believe that's a sign they don't want her. She should have gone on flights Fri/Sat but is still caged. I'm not sure how to do this one.

The other nucs are all making a queen. I assume they will be too late but I'm going to let them go and later do some combines if it looks like a lost cause. Winter is coming.
You may not be too late, I figure 1 1/2 - 2 more brood cycles, Sept to Oct. I have 2 hives in the process also, but they have lots of Summer bees to help (hopefully) I help them along as much as I can.

As for introducing I usually don’t have a problem for whatever reason...If they are all over the cage maybe they want her really bad! The time I did have a problem there was a virgin in there. If you can get dome of the attendants out that may help also, I think the hive bees might be wanting to sting/kill them not queen, she gets in the way.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,870 Posts
I would suggest doing a search on introducing virgins . I have only done a few myself with no glowing success. There are more reports of difficulty than saying it is easy so there are lots of threads on it. The issue of already started cells nixing acceptance is very real with either virgin or mated.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
648 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Well, I read all the threads I could find about introducing virgins and learned that I will probably just be dropping cells in from now on.

2 nights ago I checked in on the one that balled the virgin. I found another virgin running around on the frames so I guess the cell I put in was ready to pop. Strangely I found a 2nd virgin on another frame. She wasn't looking so good so I moved her to one of the other queenless nucs and gave them all a mist with sugar water.

Last night I checked in on them and she was nowhere to be found. They weren't crazy about her even with the sugar and smoke, so they probably finished her off. I checked in on the caged virgin...she was dead. They didn't like her either.

So, I went over to the hive I've been stealing brood and eggs from all year intending to steal more and do some grafts. It's a double deep full of bees. I got in and found no queen and almost zero eggs. I did find 3 frames worth of swarm and supercedure cells. So, every queenless nuc now has been given a frame with cells already started and there was enough young larvae to graft maybe 10 of them that I am hopeful for.

My guess is the donor swarmed sometime in the last 3 days since there was a few eggs. I never had a fall swarm before but I'm hearing lots of people in the area are having that this year.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
170 Posts
I have been installing a lot of virgins in nucs this year, I have found that in early spring you can direct release into a quenelles nuc with a less than 24 hour old virgin with no problem most of the time. The later it gets in the year a little spraying down of the nuc with sugar water does help. This late in the year I have found that putting the virgin in a queen cage with some attendees and a candy plug works best. But nothing is 100 % all the time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,663 Posts
I have been installing a lot of virgins in nucs this year, I have found that in early spring you can direct release into a quenelles nuc with a less than 24 hour old virgin with no problem most of the time. The later it gets in the year a little spraying down of the nuc with sugar water does help. This late in the year I have found that putting the virgin in a queen cage with some attendees and a candy plug works best. But nothing is 100 % all the time.
I find the same exact thing as Greg.Direct release hours old virgins and good to go.If over a day they get caged with a candy plug.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
76 Posts
I was given three grafted queen cells this year and none of them took. What seemed to happen with each of them is that they emerged, seemed to go on a mating flight, came back and laid a small number of eggs, and then were promptly superceded. It looked like once they had a viable queen capped, they killed the queen and tossed her body out the front door.

I eventually made a queenless split with some open brood, got a few frames of queen cells from that, and then dropped those frames in the nucs that killed their queens, and that worked out fine.

Maybe the nucs had vastly different genetics than the queen cells I gave them. I've had mated Russian queens that got completely destroyed by colonies full of Italian genetics. So maybe something like that happened. They just didn't like the smell of their new queens.
 
1 - 9 of 9 Posts
Top