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Discussion Starter #1
Today I went to add a second deep on 2 of my 3 new colonies (3 5-frame nucs)mainly to give them more space because of the 2-gallon feeders that take the space of 2 frames. The first one looked great and I was able to locate the queen.
The second had queen cells. Any suggestions?
 

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If the queen is still there, you can split her out and make another colony if you have the equipment. Otherwise you can tear down all of those queen cells (only if you see the queen) and buy yourself an extra week or so to address the problem. If you do not see the queen in the hive with queen cells, leave them be and let them raise a new queen.
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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Those are some really nice looking Q cells. If you can make a split or two with the resources you have, I would. Why are your bees still in nucs? A healthy nuc needs to be transfered into a full sized hive within a week or two of delivery.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
They were in nucs 2 weeks ago. They’re in 10 frame Langstroths now.

I couldn’t find the queen today.
I have enough equipment for 3 more single deep hives.

Should I take a frame with qc and another frame of brood for one split. Of course making sure the queen isn’t on them. Then take another frame of brood from the other hive and another frame with qc for a second split?
 

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I'd look to make sure you've got eggs on the frames, then look for the queen . You need to know if she's laying or viable. If yes to eggs, I'd find her. Do a split with her. And leave 2 of this nice cells on 1 frame. If you have the resources, make some splits with the remaining cells. I like 2 cells in my splits, just in case 1 isn't viable. 1st one out of cell, usually kills the other in cells. I'd do asap, as you will loose half your hive if old queen flys the coop... those a very nice cells, and very large. Hope all goes well. Rich
 

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Discussion Starter #7
What if I can’t find the queen?
I’ve spent the last hour and a half looking and I couldn’t find her.
 

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In picture #1, the Queen cell on the right looks as though the Queen has emerged. If so, the old Queen has already left and you have a virgin running around. They are very hard to find or she could possibly be out trying to mate.
If those QCs are still closed do what Rich said.

Good luck.
Alex
 

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That long QC in #1 couldn't possibly be one QC could it? I mean it is HUGE !!
I would split that and take a pic of what comes out because I for one would love to see that :eek:
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Well, I think they may have swarmed. There seemed to bee fewer bees and I ended up looking for over two hours and never found the queen. I went ahead and made a split using a frame that had 3 QCs.

AHudd: That cell was capped yesterday when I looked.

Tigger: That cell just looks huge. It’s attached to burr comb,but it’s no bigger than the other one in the pic.
 

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When were those nucs installed, did you see the queen when you installed them? Its a fine line between a nuc that's too weak to sell and one that will swarm if not given more comb. If you had them a month and they look like that you were a bit behind. If you had them a week then maybe she swarmed before you picked up....
To the photos: beware of long queen cells: sometimes the larvae fall out of the royal jelly pool. The bees draw a longer cell but the queen dies or is malnourished because she was not in contact with her royal jelly. Also, sometimes (usually when they don't have another option) they draw cells from unfertilized (drone) eggs. These obviously don't turn into queens. The cells in the last picture look ok from here. Keep an eye on the other 2 that are drawn by drone comb. And one picture looks like queen cups. It is only a queen cell once she lays an egg in it.... In a full sized colony they swarm about the same day the first queen cell is capped (about a week before she emerges). In a packed but small volume colony they swarm before the cell is capped.... Good luck. Keep us posted.
 
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