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I have a VSH queen that I wanted to overwinter, any suggestions, tips?

Thanks
I do this in 5 frame nucs or in two 5 frame nuc bodies.
Just like mini-colonies. They need enough bees, stores and protection from
robbers and the weather and they'll be fine.

Search here and on the 'net for pics of Over-Wintering nucs.

Adam
www.vpqueenbees.com
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks Adam, overwintering in a nuc was the direction I was leaning torward. This is my first I.I. queen and I wasn't sure if they overwinted well. She is in a full size hive now, with about 4 frames of brood on both sides of frames, but low on stores. I heard that these queens have some problems and they were right on the money. i.e: they like to sting, small brood nest, constantly have supersedure cells, but nice solid pattern.:)
 

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Where did you get her? I am interested in getting a cpl this fall, but the like to sting part doesn't sound good.

Johnny
 

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Why on earth would bees from an II queen be any more likely to sting than bees from a naturally mated queen? We have some of Glenn Apiaries Hygenic Italians and they are just like other Italians, gentle. :scratch:
 

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Guy in my bee club was talking last night that he had a VSH Italian queen from CA that was mean as heck. She was one of two he received...the other gently as a kitten he said.
 

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Thanks Adam, overwintering in a nuc was the direction I was leaning torward. This is my first I.I. queen and I wasn't sure if they overwinted well.
If you meet the conditions for colony over-wintering, she'll be just fine.

I heard that these queens have some problems and they were right on the money. i.e: they like to sting, small brood nest, constantly have supersedure cells, but nice solid pattern.:)
I'm not sure where your information comes from. II queens are pretty rare. Only a few folks in the USA produce them. They all have a good reputaion. Remember, buying an II queen is buying an UNTESTED queen, unless you're shelling out some serious money. There's always some unknown when using untested stock.
The best policy when using II breeders is to graft form them as much as possible and then evaluate their daughters. If you have a tested breeder, you should be grafting from her and not here on beesource ;)

Adam Finkelstein
www.vpqueenbees.com
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
If you meet the conditions for colony over-wintering, she'll be just fine.



I'm not sure where your information comes from. II queens are pretty rare. Only a few folks in the USA produce them. They all have a good reputaion. Remember, buying an II queen is buying an UNTESTED queen, unless you're shelling out some serious money. There's always some unknown when using untested stock.
The best policy when using II breeders is to graft form them as much as possible and then evaluate their daughters. If you have a tested breeder, you should be grafting from her and not here on beesource ;)

Adam Finkelstein
www.vpqueenbees.com
This hive was aggresive before I introduced the I.I. queen. I thought this trait would disappear when her brood took over but they got more aggressive. I thought this was a little strange being that this queen should have superior genetics. But upon a little reading, here on Beesource, it seems that I'm not the only one to witness this aggression with a pure VSH breeder. Please don't take this as me being unhappy with the breeder queen, it's her daughters that count. So far I haven't seen this aggresiveness with her daughters.
On your other statement that "you should be grafting..." I would like to, but I got her for queen cell production and I don't think I could find anyone in Michigan to buy them this late in the season. This was my first year grafting and I made some very well fed cells, 82/90 sealed on my last batch, however I need a little work on keeping the sidecomb virgins away.:doh:
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
BROKE-T,
I got her from Glenn Apiaries. Awesome customer service. The queen was very small when I got her but once she started laying she swells right up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
FISH STIX,
Your correct, it has nothing to do with I.I., it just might be a characteristic of the VSH gene, maybe someone else with more experience/expertise will see this post. Maybe it's my imagination?
 

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FISH STIX,
Your correct, it has nothing to do with I.I., it just might be a characteristic of the VSH gene, maybe someone else with more experience/expertise will see this post. Maybe it's my imagination?
Some bees carry expression for more then optimum aggressive behavior. As one
is selecting for desirable traits making up a phenotype (high VSH,
productive bees) one can sometimes unknowingly select for undesirable
traits (aggressive behavior).

If you get a queen, either a breeder or open-mated, you won't know how she
pans out until after you've tested her in the field. Now of course, bee
breeders should be keeping an eye out for potential culling--aggressive
behavior is one area where culling is good. We drop any breeding candidate
if aggressive behavior shows up.

However, when making crosses with II, sometimes the combination of two very
desirable lines, can produce some not so desirable expressions. Aggressive
behavior could appear.

Aggressive behavior and VSH are not related. We breed and use stock
that's highly VSH and have very gentle, workable bees. If there's been a
spate of aggressive VSH queens coming from another producer, I'd bring that
up with the producer. If I have a customer that's not happy with a queen we
produced, I'd hope they'd let me know. I'd investigate and see if some
resolution could be achieved.

Adam Finkelstein
www.vpqueenbees.com
 

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If she's on feed and still has a small brood nest she needs a pinch. I don't know if wintering in nucs is smart that far north...
Some very credible and competant producers over-Winter nucs real close to the Canadian border.

Over-Wintering in nucs works very well--search around, you'll find many different techniques and methods all working well.

Adam Finkelstein
www.vpqueenbees.com
 

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It being very cold this winter, I had some bad experiences. I had 15 5 frame nucs in a line with no supers, well fed, yellow bees. They were near starved after our first bout with the teens. I found it far too cold to feed so I went to dry feed on top, I had half take the feed, and half dwindle. I did wrap ahead of the coldest weather Ive ever seen this far south. Can you make it work? Definitely. But I would definitely super and feed them hard, now. And you really have to assess is this queen going to be worth the effort. I've never had a 'bad' II queen, not saying there arent any. Some are a little hot, but they respond well to good manipulation practices.

Adam, I have yet to hear a negative comment about your queens, or anyone credible rebuke VSH, keep up the excellent work. PM inbound.
 

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I have a couple II hygenic italians from glenns . They have been in a 10 frame deep for about 5 weeks now. I was told bye a couple experienced beeks to check every week with out fail for queen cells as thee bees will supercede here at the first oportunity. So far not one queen cell has been made. Is this due to her being still young or was I given incorrect information. thanks in advance for any help.... George B
 
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