Beesource Beekeeping Forums banner

1 - 3 of 3 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I had a hive at a friends who has some apple trees not far from here. I inspected it two weeks ago, then was out of town the following weekend. I brought it home on Friday night, with the intention of inspecting it yesterday. But it swarmed by mid-day. Now Im not sure when to inspect the original hive.

Unless I missed a queen cell two weeks ago, a queen probably wouldnt have had time to emerge yet. In the past Ive had queen cells that were fastened to the frame underneath them, so when I pulled the frame to inspect it, the cell ripped in half. So Im trying to decide how long to wait before inspecting the original hive. If I inspect immediately, Im afraid Ill destroy queen cells(s). Waiting a week be might sufficient, but Im wondering whether I should wait two weeks to be certain. Id like to get in there, but dont want to risk destroying the queen cell(s). Any thoughts?

On a side-note: Im not entirely sure that I want to let them raise their own queen anyway. Im inclined to give it a shot, since they swarmed before I could do a split with a purchased queen. Ive let them raise their own once before, but ended up with some very aggressive bees, and I ended up replacing the queen. Are bees in the same area likely to always exhibit the same traits? (Is previous behavior any indication of what to expect for future traits from drones in the area?) Im in Kansas, so while we may have some Africanisation, I dont think its pervasive.

Thanks,
~Dean
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
509 Posts
Once swarmed, the only thing left to do, is split further with the abundant queen cells, or destroy all but a few to discourage afterswarms. Barring those reasons, there's no reason to open the boxes for 25 to 28 days.

If you are going to requeen, you'll need to shake all the bees off to make sure you don't miss any cells, or wait till they're queen rite and remove the new queen. Anytime in between, and you could have multiple hard to locate virgins running around the hive, or out on mating flights that could lead to your purchased queen getting killed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,540 Posts
If you're going to do some cell-reductions surgery, do it soon. Queen cells hatch in about 8 days from capping. In theory there could be some cells capped even before the swarm, if the swarm was delayed by weather. I usually remove cells about the third day after a swarm. Easier to see the more-developed cells, and they won't be making any more from last-laid eggs, either. If prevention of cast swarms (secondary ones) is your goal, settle in and do a really thorough search. Keep in mind queen cells should stay upright and un-shaken for best development, so maybe choose those cells you want to keep and set that frame(s) aside in a quiet box while you tear into the rest of the frames Shake in some extra nurse bees if the day is cool when you're doing this. I leave no more than three cells, and all of a different apparent age in case of failure.

Nancy
 
1 - 3 of 3 Posts
Top