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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I installed a 3# package of Buckfast bees on Friday and did not direct release. Checked to see if she was out and about this morning with the intention of releasing her if the candy was still blocking her in. No joy, dead queen. It dropped into the 30s here last night and the workers were clustered away from the queen cage. I figure she got too cold and expired.

I ordered a replacement queen, Italian, from Draper Apiary as that was all they had and my local apiaries won't have queens available until June. The replacement will be here Wednesday via UPS and the dead queen is still in the hive to fool the bees into thinking she is still alive so they don't turn nasty in the interim.

Questions I have are:

1) the bees are bringing in pollen and feeding on syrup so they will they build out comb while the new queen is in transit?

2) If I don't want Italian bees and want to re-queen with a carni or another buckfast can I do it this year or should I wait until next year to avoid setting this have back further?

Thanks in advance.
 

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Maybe you have one of those packages where an unknown second queen was in the package, not caged. Check it closely before introducing another queen.
 

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It dropped into the 30s here last night and the workers were clustered away from the queen cage. I figure she got too cold and expired.
I am with Ray check for a queen because it sounds like the one in the cage was dead before it got cold :(
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Turns out she was not dead after all. I went to install a new queen package and she was alive and well, still in the cage. There was no sign of life when I put the cage back into the hive on Monday.

What does one do with an extra queen? I do not have any established hives to take workers and frames from to make a nuc. The queen I got was marked with a red dot indicating she is a 2008 bee, so I am assuming that this was her last season anyway.
 

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Interesting that she is an '08 queen. Did you pay much for her? As far as what to do with her, maybe someone on here that lives close to you will give you some bees to start a nuc, if you were closer to me, I would do it in a heartbeat. I know Hambone would too.
Glad to hear that the first queen made it tho.

Craig
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Following up on this situation. The queen is still alive, but I am not seeing any open or capped brood. The only capped cells I see are drone and there are quite a few drones in the hive. The bees are putting up capped honey. The bees are docile and allowed me inspect the entire hive looking for the queen without getting upset. No smoke, only 4:1 water/sugar with some wintergreen oil from a sprayer.

I am concerned that even though the queen is still alive that she may not be laying very well due to the trauma she suffered early on as was discussed earlier in this thread.

I ordered a MN Hygienic queen today to replace the queen in question. Can i just remove the old queen and do a normal queen cage delayed release like with a package?
 

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Kill the bad queen the day before your new queen arrives. When the new queen arrives place her in the hive with the candy exposed. Check back 3-5 days later to see if she is released. You may have future issues with this hive because you may have mostly old bees.
 
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