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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I went through the hives this morning and was able to enjoy the cool front that came through. I was able to spot the queen working the upper box so I decided to mark her. I was able to get her into my yellow plunger and gently marked her but she was agitated after the paint was dabbed on. She spun around and got some on her head/top of eyes from the paint on the cage portion of the holder.

Do you thing she will be ok? I was going to see if she is still active this afternoon.

I spotted the queen in the second hive and when I grabbed the cup she moved. Took 10 min to find her again and i had to set the frame down and i coudn't find her again and I gave up.
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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Just to poke a little fun here, no meanness intended, but are you sure you marked a queen? From the pictures it looks like a drone is sporting a pretty blue paint job.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Just to poke a little fun here, no meanness intended, but are you sure you marked a queen? From the pictures it looks like a drone is sporting a pretty blue paint job.

Lol ...I have the fattest queens in town
Its funny you should say that because my wife has no interest in bees and said that it does not look like the queen.

At least that's positive news...im going to make up some flash cards up. Otherwise im going to have a bunch of blue bees in each hive.

Beekeeping 101 failure. Im never going to make it out of this forum page:)
 

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Lincoln: I have made far worse mistakes than that. These bugs find new ways to humble me on a regular basis. Painting drones is a great way to practice painting your queens. Pick up several and put a dot on them until you get really comfortable with your technique. You will feel much more confident when you are trying to mark the actual queen.
 

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Lol. I have made many mistakes with my bees...It seems that’s the only way I ever learn.

The funny thing is that drone will continue to remind you of it until he’s forced out of the hive this fall. Lol.

When you are using the plunger, don’t be afraid to get her pinned down good. If your’s has a foam cushion, you can completely immobilize her and not hurt her. Before ya know it you’ll be grabbing her with you fingers and you’ll forget about the plunger.

Edit: The first time I grabbed ahold of a queen by hand to mark her, I only had her by one leg. She twisted around and did a 180...ripped her leg right off. I put her right back into the hive. She was getting around just fine. Within about 3 or 4 days, the bees had killed her. Talk about feeling stupid.
 

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Lol ...I have the fattest queens in town
Its funny you should say that because my wife has no interest in bees and said that it does not look like the queen.

At least that's positive news...im going to make up some flash cards up. Otherwise im going to have a bunch of blue bees in each hive.

Beekeeping 101 failure. Im never going to make it out of this forum page:)
Oh, how funny! I just was advised to practice on drones to get comfortable with handling queens. Maybe mark a few more to get technique down to see how you can prevent the spazzy twisty part in the end? Blue is next year's color for queens, though, so you might want to go with orange in case you get any overwintered drones to make next years queens easier to spot...I know overwintered drones aren't too common, but just in case!
 

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I use this device and like it.
Just keeping it handy and use quickly IF I mean to mark (or would like to mark).
https://www.kelleybees.com/queen-marking-disc-push-in-cage.html

Right, practice on drones is a good idea.
I mark them a different way, but I have had a couple get balled when I put them back in the hive. I am assuming that workers cannot fit between the spikes to access the queen while she is in there? This would let me know there was a problem before the workers could get to her. I will order one and try it. Thanks.
 

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FWIW, A queen producer found that he needs several of the queen holding devices while marking queens. He thinks that if he uses the same marking device, the previous queen leaves her pheromone all over the cushion and the smell gets put on the next queen, causing her to be balled. The advise is anecdotal but it makes sense to me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
FWIW, A queen producer found that he needs several of the queen holding devices while marking queens. He thinks that if he uses the same marking device, the previous queen leaves her pheromone all over the cushion and the smell gets put on the next queen, causing her to be balled. The advise is anecdotal but it makes sense to me.
Will washing the foam help reduce balling?
 

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It’s real fun watching the queen fly off never to be seen again. Joys
First time marking I dropped her and she flew away. After looking all over the ground around me, being careful not to step her, I got into the hive.

She had flown back and I was quite relieved.
 
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