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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Inspected hive to find multiple eggs in a few cells. Must be a laying worker/s. Although most of the capped brood is not drone cells. three weeks ago during an inspection saw a queen that was a supersedured queen with no markings. Am I screwed or what? I know it is a long time consuming process to rid the hive of these layig workers and was praying that I could be wrong . SEND HELP QUICK!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
yea thanks I counted back and figured that if there was a queen three weeks ago there would not be laying workers at this time . I thought it took about a month for the workers to develop the hormones needed to lay eggs and this would be tooo soon since I saw the queen three weeks ago. Hopefully it is just the new queen getting settled thanks.
 

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It's good to keep track of time because it often eliminates some possibilities. Unfortunately it takes up to four weeks to get a new queen raised, bred and settled into laying and it could take as little as three to get a laying worker, but usually it takes longer before the worker starts laying.

My guess is it's a new queen getting settled too, but I'd check again in a week and see if you have some open brood and again a week after that to see if you have capped worker brood or capped drone brood and to see if you've stopped getting the multiple eggs.
 
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Hi all,

Just for the record I wanted to put my 2 cents in about laying workers. I've had the problem happen twice to me and I know it can be frustrating to correct. In both cases I still don't know what happend to the queen, but I can say that I wasn't checking my hives often enough.

The first way that you can correct a laying worker problem is to take the hive with a laying worker and combine it with a hive that has a good laying queen. The queen will hunt down and kill the laying worker. Keep the hives together until you see no more multiple eggs ect... When you are sure that the laying worker is gone you can split the hives taking some frames of eggs with the split. This does work, but sometimes isn't worth the time you have to put into it, much less making a split after.

The second is alot easier and doesn't take as much time, or tie up a good hive. Take your hive with the laying worker about 50 yds or so away from where it normally sits. Remove the frames from the brood box (bees and all) and lean them up against "whatever" tree, log, truck.....Then take the empty box (with NO BEES in it!!!!) and put it back where it normally sits. Go back to your frames and shake/brush all the bees off...ALL THE BEES!!!! don't leave any on the frame not even one. Once the frame is clean of bees take it back to the empty brood box and put the frame back in. By now alot of the bees that you just cleaned off the box have beat you back to the hive and are looking for the furniture that's missing from the house. Keep going with this same thing until all the frames are back in the box...do the super too if the hive has one. Now if you got all the bees off the frames and box you should have a hive with out a laying worker. What you did is left the laying worker out in the field. A laying worker will only develop from a young worker that hasn't flown out from the hive, hence doesn't know it's way back. When I did it last year I shook the bees off beside a trailer and the laying worker flew to it and a small cluster of bees formed around it. Now all you have to do is get a new queen for your hive. At this point you can also let the hive raise a queen on it's own. Just drop a frame of eggs from one of your other hives in.

Another thing...when you let a hive raise a queen when you put the frame of eggs in come back 4 days later and remove all the capped queen cells! Cells that are capped by then were already 4 days old when the bees started the queen cells. You'll get a better queen if you do this.

Billy Bob
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I will check in a week and look for new open brood. like a said most if not almost all of the capped brood is worker so ... If I have a laying worker situation I can't combine hives since I only have the one so I will probably have to shake them down, but my hopes are that it is a new queen just settling in. I don't know what happened to the old queen I don't think they swarmed because upon inspection I saw no queen cells or swarm cells but of course they could have been overlooked. Also this is a new hive. I did see a queen cell on some burr comb that was built on the middle frame where the queen cage was afterward but since this was not technically on the bottom of the frame but the bottom of the comb though that it was a supercedure cell.I have been opening the hive every other week as it is late summer and there is a nectar dearth.Although I have only done three full scale inspections removing every frame and going over each one.
 
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