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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have an OBS hive and I killed my existing queen because she was hardly laying. I got a new queen from a hive I extracted from a wall. They quickly killed the new queen since I introduced her immediately after killing the old queen.
They raised a new virgin queen but I dont have any drones that I can see and the new virgin queen isnt laying so I got 5 drones from a traditional hive and put them directly into my OBS hive.
Now it looks like they are trying to kill the drones.

What should I have done with the drones instead??

[This message has been edited by oregonsparkie (edited July 11, 2004).]
 

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I would suggest that you read up on bee behavior to get a better idea of how they live and reproduce. The bees will almost alawys kill outsiders, especially when they are placed directly into the hive. Placing five drones into the hive isn't of any benefit. The virgin queen makes mating FLIGHTS and can take several flights of great distance, mating with any number of drones in the area. In other words, while you might prefer to mate indoors, bees do it on the wing. As long as they raised a new queen and there are other colonies in the area, nature will provide a way.
 

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We all learned one way or the other and you should never ever put a new queen in a hive like you have don. Here an idea how you should do it in the future.

1. Normaly I put the new queen in a cage, mount the cage on an empty frame with a 10mm / 3/8 foundation strip beside the cage. This should stay in the hive for 3 days and if anything is ok you can see that your bees starting to build combs on that small strip. Now a candy as plug in the cage and the bees let the queen out, next inspection after 2 weeks.
If there is no comb build there is another Queen or laying workers in the hive.

2. With an OBS you should wait at least 2 or 3 hours after you removed the old queen. Than put the new queen in a jar with 3mm / 1/8 honey and let her swim till she is very tired (slow moving). In this case the queen produces more pheromone than normal. Now put the queen 5cm / 2 inch away from the entrance. The guard bees smelling the pheromone and honey and they clean the newcomer. After she is clean and can move again the bees always helping the tired queen to go inside.

I never lost a queen this both ways.

The number two works ONLY if there is 100% no other queen (virgin or not) inside.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
thanks Axtmann,

Ill try that if the situation arises again.
 

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oregonsparkie, Hi. I would definatly get some books on bees and thier behavior. One nice book is ABC and XYZ in Bee Culture. It covers everything in bees. Another one is Rearing Queens, by Dr Roger Morse. The info in these books in invaluable. As time goes on get more books and definatly get a magasine or two to read about bees. Beeculture or American Bee Journal. Have fun with this hobby.
Dan
 

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I suppose we could elaborate some.

A virgin queen spends several days in the hive maturing. Then she goes on several days of orientation flights so when she goes to mate she can find her way back. Then she flies far enough to insure that she probably will NOT mate with any drones from her hive, or for that matter the general vicinity of her hive.

In other words the number of drones in her hive is totally irelevant to her breeding except as an indicator that there ARE drones this time of year. She not only will not mate in the hive, she will not mate with drones FROM the hive, nor anywhere CLOSE to the hive.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
If she doesnt mate with drones from her own hive then why have drones?? Arent they a terrible drain on hive resources??

When she goes on her mating flight will she come back to the hive everyday or will she be gone for a day or two?
 

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Yeah MB your right. The little lady is finicky like that. They will fly quite a long distance just to be sure that the drones are not related to her. That is the bigest obstical in breeding bees and the reason artifical insimination came to being. It better controls the genetics of the bees. Still its not 100% but close.

She will mate one and up to three days in a row. Coming back to the hive everytime. And no the drones are not that daring on the hive. The workers will only take care of so maney and eat the eggs, remove the larva, and kick out drones. Some researches have said it is good for moral of the hive to have drones. You don't want umteen million of them but you do want some around.
Dan

[This message has been edited by bjerm2 (edited July 12, 2004).]

[This message has been edited by bjerm2 (edited July 12, 2004).]
 

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>If she doesnt mate with drones from her own hive then why have drones?? Arent they a terrible drain on hive resources??

If you can figure out how to not have drones, I'd like to see it. But if you succeeded I don't think the morale of the hive would be high. The last study I saw on the subject concluded that nothing you do can stop them from having the exact same number of drones in the hive at a given time of year. They will rework foundation to make drone cells and open up (removing honey from) or fill drone cells with honey, to suit the need.

>When she goes on her mating flight will she come back to the hive everyday or will she be gone for a day or two?

She'll come back every evening or afternoon. She'll go every day for several days.
 

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"If she doesnt mate with drones from her own hive then why have drones??"

Somebody's got to do it! In fact everyone's got to do it. If you think in terms of humans, not having drones would be like not having any male children. It wouldn't affect your family, but your neighbor's daughter wouldn't have anyone to mate with. The drones are there in case they are needed by a neighboring colony.
 
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