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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So into hives today, one doing great, upper is full of capped brood, and they are working 4 of frames in lower hive body. a couple questions with this hive..

1. with blackberry out, should I add a honey super, if so should I feed when doing so to keep things going strong, or wait until they are farther along in lower hive deep before going up with super.


My second hive has lots of drone brood, single deep, all 8 frames drawn, but no capped female brood, and what looks like a potential queen cell. Not sure if they swarmed on me, but I would think they would leave some capped brood, or if I just lost queen. Hive was calm pretty much. so couple options..

1. Requeen with new queen, and get them going again.
2. take frame of brood with larvae from other hive and let them make a queen, and this also gives some new bees that are not drones..

ANy ideas or help is good thank you. In PNW, Seattle area...

VR
 

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I'm still a beginner, but on 3 of my hives I had a similar situation, all of them ended up having queens even when I thought for sure they were hopelessly queenless. Bees know what they are doing. In my splits I usually start seeing larva about a week after the last of the drone brood hatches.

That said, if you move over a frame of worker brood it will strengthen the weak hive up and keep a steady flow of bees, and you can put one of the empty frames in the other hive, which they will love because the queen will be able to fill it out immediately, since all the cells are empty. Just make sure you don't move any queens over.
 

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My second hive has lots of drone brood, single deep, all 8 frames drawn, but no capped female brood, and what looks like a potential queen cell.
VR
What do you mean by potential? An uncapped cell with larva? A capped cell?

If they have a good queen cell, leave them alone for 3 weeks and then check for eggs. Nothing can be gained by checking on them earlier.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
zhiv9

it appears to maybe be a queen cell, but turned odd direction and on a piece of add shaped/drawn comb...., there are larvae what appear to be drone brood only as they are large cells taller walls and all other capped cells are drone only...

I am going to get a capped queen cell from a local breeder, remove what looks like a queen cell, and then let this one hatch, mate and then I should as you said in three weeks be in somewhat decent shape. I may move a frame of capped brood over from another hive, brush off all bees and just move over this frame, and add some workers to the mix...

We shall see what happens...
 

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>My second hive has lots of drone brood, single deep, all 8 frames drawn, but no capped female brood, and what looks like a potential queen cell. Not sure if they swarmed on me, but I would think they would leave some capped brood, or if I just lost queen. Hive was calm pretty much. so couple options..

It takes 24 days for drones to make it to maturity and 21 for workers, so when you are "between" laying queens, you sometimes find capped drone brood and no capped worker brood. If you have really spotty brood in addition (a larvae here and there scattered) then you probably have a drone layer of some kind (laying workers, drone laying queen etc.). If you have small drone cells (drones in worker cells) this is also an indicator of drone layers. If you don't have those (spotty brood and drones in worker cells) and you have no open brood, then you likely have a virgin queen who isn't laying yet.

>1. Requeen with new queen, and get them going again.

If they are queenless (and they might be) this is a great plan. If they have a virgin queen, she will kill the new queen.

>2. take frame of brood with larvae from other hive and let them make a queen, and this also gives some new bees that are not drones..

This is always a safe bet as they can raise a queen if they need one or not if they don't and meanwhile the open brood will suppress laying workers.

http://www.bushfarms.com/beespanacea.htm
 

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I am going to get a capped queen cell from a local breeder, remove what looks like a queen cell, and then let this one hatch
Careful now. If they have a new queen already and she's just getting mated or beginning to lay....this may trigger a swarm.
A frame with eggs from your other hive is a much safer option. If they are queenright you will not have caused any problems....and if they are queenless they should begin making queen cells....and at that point you can choose options.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
So can they make a queen from a larvae alone not matter how far along it is? I just need some eggs on the frame, correct... I can sweep off bees from that frame and add to this hive and they will do the rest....
 

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So can they make a queen from a larvae alone not matter how far along it is?
No. There is a difference between eggs and larvae. If you find a frame with eggs....they can make a queen. After the eggs hatch...then the larvae are only suitable for making a queen for a very short period of time. Also....as MB stated, adding a frame with brood, whatever its age will help delay the advent of laying workers....
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
OK,

will see about going and adding a frame of brood from one to other today.. should be able to find a frame with eggs and young larvae is my experience....

Another question then, my hive that is doing much better, has full upper deep and has moved onto four frames of lower deep... blackberries strong right now, I need the lower deep about 7 frames strong/full before adding honey super correct.

Can I feed the hive syrup to push along drawing of comb on lower deep to get to a fuller condition for adding honey super for summer? or should I really just worry about two very strong hives for this year, no honey and go ahead and feed both to keep them building and going strong...
 

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>So can they make a queen from a larvae alone not matter how far along it is?

No. But if you can find a frame with only one age of larva on it, you should take a picture of it and send it to Ripley's Believe it or Not. If it has open brood on it, it likely has some eggs somewhere. If it has some eggs on it, it likely has some proper age larvae on it, and as beemandan said, those eggs will be the right age soon anyway.

>I just need some eggs on the frame, correct...

That is a good bet to make sure the right age larvae are on there somewhere... or will be soon.

>I can sweep off bees from that frame and add to this hive and they will do the rest....

Yes. If you are certain you can find a queen you can leave the bees as long as the queen isn't on it. Or shake it off. It depends on how strong the hive I'm donating it to is what I would do with the adhering bees.
 
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