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I want to learn how to raise my own Queens in 2020.

Looking for some winter reading material. What are some solid Queen Rearing books?
 

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sources I learned from

queen rearing essentials...larry connor...book

queen rearing and bee breeding...laidlaw

bee culture mag...latshaw mag article

mike palmers queen rearing video...you tube

mel diselkoans book


hands on work...

sue colby's ai class...expensive but worth the experience

oregon master beekeeper's master's class 2019

john of oldsol...soba

vandruff apiaries...job

there's a bunch of older books to read but myself, I found those...lacking
 

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That was my goal for this past season was to learn how to rear queens.. I was successful in that now I have the confidence to raise queens. I did buy Larry Conor’s book Queen Rearing Essentials. He seemed to use terms that were easily grasped. I also watched and rewatched YouTube videos.
 

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Several classic queen rearing books you can read online for free:
http://www.bushfarms.com/beesoldbooks.htm

What I do most closely resembles Jay Smith's "Queen Rearing Simplified" with a few changes recommended in Jay Smith's "Better Queens". But I learned something from each of the books.
 

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I would suggest these, in this order:
Increase essentials , Lawrence Connor and then his Queen Rearing Essentials
then Contemporary Queen Rearing, Laidlaw.
 

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If you are looking for books, those already listed are excellent and I would recommend all of them. If I could only recommend one, I would go with Queen Rearing Essential by Larry Conner. I started queen rearing a couple of years ago and found that the information here on Beesource was by far the best resource available. Everything you could possibly need is here in one place. I am assuming you will be doing small scale queen rearing so I also recommend this thread: https://www.beesource.com/forums/sh...emens-Starter-Finisher&highlight=cell+builder. It is an excellent way for a beginner to start queen rearing while using minimal resources. Look in the sticky notes at the start of this queen rearing forum and read the Michael Palmer cell building method thread. In my opinion, the books do not stress enough the importance of a strong cell builder. The information in this thread will help on that. I scale it down to a 5 frame cell builder and that works just fine for the 10- 15 cells I raise at one time.

Good luck with your first attempts at queen rearing and let us know how it goes next summer!
 

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Look at Michael Palmer post above, can't make a large cell builder like he does? just us one colony set up like that and just do a dozen grafts. A good colony can make a dozen when they swarm so it should be no problem
 

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Good idea.
 

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Another idea for small scale queen rearing is to use a strong cell builder like Mike Palmer but do it with three box nuc with a cloake board on top of the bottom box. Easy to get to a strong hive but no need to dedicate a lot of resources.
 

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I want to learn how to raise my own Queens in 2020.

Looking for some winter reading material. What are some solid Queen Rearing books?
Suggestion: 'instead of', or 'as well as' books, suggest you watch a few queen-rearing videos, for imho nothing beats watching somebody else's procedure and/or technique.
There are plenty of techniques to consider, as well as the classic Doolittle 'grafting into cell cups' which tends to be the default: such as those of Miller, Alley, Hopkins, and so on. There's also the Nicot/Jenter (graftless) methods, which tend to be rather like Marmite(tm) - either loved or hated. :)

Also - as the Cloake Board has just been mentioned, I'd suggest considering that method of creating a temporary queenless starter zone, as well as the Joseph Clemens Queenless Starter-Finisher method. I've used both of these methods and find them to work extremely well.
LJ
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
As a follow up I read Jay Smiths ‘Better Queens’. It’s a different kind of read. Meandering over many approaches. I was thankful for the summary at the end. Planning on giving it a try this spring.
 

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I strongly believe, there is nothing as eye opening, resource freeing, and mind freeing in beekeeping as raising your own queens.
When one first starts out with bees, queens are a precious resource to be horded. We watch for the queen, we are careful with the queen. When a colony is under performing we tend to think 'lets give it a couple more weeks'. We hesitate to spend the bucks for replacing an under performing queen. It is a disaster when we realize a colony has gone queenless, even more so if we killed her by accident.

Then we start raising our own queens. For the last few years I've always had 8 or 10 'spare queens' in mating nucs thru the season.

If a colony is under performing, no hesitation, pinch the queen and go fetch a replacement from one of the mating nucs. If a colony appears queenless, replacement queen waiting in the mating nucs. If we roll or otherwise kill a queen during inspection, no big deal, lots more waiting where she came from.

Ones whole perspective on beekeeping and queens changes when there are a dozen or so queens at the ready in mating nucs over the whole season.
 

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I strongly believe, there is nothing as eye opening, resource freeing, and mind freeing in beekeeping as raising your own queens.

I couldn’t agree more with this statement! Last year was my first and far from last year rasing my own queens.
 

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I strongly believe, there is nothing as eye opening, resource freeing, and mind freeing in beekeeping as raising your own queens.
Indeed. As a 13 year old beginner beekeeper i learned that bees will raise a queen from a normal egg if they are queenless. My only source of information at the time was a booklet called Beekeeping in New Zealand. So I found the queen in my one hive then made a queenless nuc. Checked later and found queen cells, wow that was huge for me. Killed the small ones then had a look a few weeks later and YES!! A beautiful laying queen. To a 13 year old boy that was a huge accomplishment i was telling everyone I knew about it, to which most of them patiently listened. :)

A few years later I got Jay Smiths "Better Queens", and this shaped my approach to queen raising for many years. It is a great book outlining the basics of raising queens.
 

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Learning to raise queens and make your own increase is essential. It frees you up from being afraid to try to use different methods and fail. Also makes keeping bees affordable.
 

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When one first starts out with bees, queens are a precious resource to be horded. We watch for the queen, we are careful with the queen. When a colony is under performing we tend to think 'lets give it a couple more weeks'. We hesitate to spend the bucks for replacing an under performing queen. It is a disaster when we realize a colony has gone queenless, even more so if we killed her by accident.

Then we start raising our own queens. For the last few years I've always had 8 or 10 'spare queens' in mating nucs thru the season.

If a colony is under performing, no hesitation, pinch the queen and go fetch a replacement from one of the mating nucs. If a colony appears queenless, replacement queen waiting in the mating nucs. If we roll or otherwise kill a queen during inspection, no big deal, lots more waiting where she came from.

Ones whole perspective on beekeeping and queens changes when there are a dozen or so queens at the ready in mating nucs over the whole season.
Thats some good advise there!
 
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