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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I’ve been trying to find reputable beekeepers at least in my mind reputable who have a YouTube video on queen banking but haven’t had much luck. I guess those guys are selling them as fast as they can make them but most videos are for unmated queens. I’d like to store mated queens for a month or so any proven methods particularly with jzbz or hair roller cages.
 

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And also I’d like to requeen hives but I’m having separation anxiety I’d like to save the old queens just in case as long a feasible. I have about 40 hives and ten nucs if that helps judge your advice of my options compared to what my available resources are.
 

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And also I’d like to requeen hives but I’m having separation anxiety I’d like to save the old queens just in case as long a feasible. I have about 40 hives and ten nucs if that helps judge your advice of my options compared to what my available resources are.
I'm no expert on this, but last year I made up a small queenless nuc and simple frame to hold cages for queens that I pulled out of hives. I ended up re queening a few hives and the banked queens did surprisingly well for a few weeks. When I no longer needed any of the queens I ended up releasing one of the queens into the nuc (without any caged queens) and it really took off .
I asked about this in the forum prior to my experiment. If I'm not mistaken, Micheal Bush commented that it would be best if all the banked queens were of similar ages.

Good Luck
 

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I wasn't totally accurate on Michael's response, Here is the actual response to my question about banking older queens.


"The main thing I've learned is you pull your queens all at the same time and put them in a queen bank at the same time. With all the queens in the same state they do ok. If you add a fresh queen who was laying today to a batch of queens that were caught a few days ago or more then the old queens get killed."
 

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I learned a simple way to construct a bank many years ago. I think from Sue Cobey. I use it every year and have no difficulty keeping queens for as long as 4-6 weeks and having them do well after standard introduction.

Start with a normal deep frame. Insert a bar just above the bottom bar so that one end of your queen cage will rest on the bottom bar and the other on the new bar. Space it so that queen cage will be held very tight. I usually have two rows of queen cages in each frame, but I have had three. It largely depends on the size of the queen cages. Place the cages on the bar so that the bees have access to the queen through the cage screen or the cage itself.

Remove the queen from a strong hive and put the frame in that hive. I put the removed queen in a cage on a bar with the new queens and reintroduce her to the hive when I've taken all the new queens.

Simple and it really works.
 

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Lloyd,do you have candy in the cage and will it dry out?
Assuming from you description you are using wooden cages.Benton or california?
Hi Jack,

Either size queen cage works well, one just has to adjust the inserted bar to fit. I've also used plastic cages. The challenge there is to squeeze them close together so they don't fall out before the bees propolize them in place. I just keep the candy that comes with the cages. After about a month most, but not all, of the candy will be gone...meaning that the queens eat more than the workers feed them.

Lloyd
 

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A couple of questions:
Why do you cage the queen of the colony?
How long will banking work?
The queen of the colony is caged because that is thought to encourage the workers to feed all the queens in the cages. I have no real idea if that is necessary.

I have often kept caged queens in the banks for 4-6 weeks without difficulty. I believe they could be kept longer if the colony was resupplied with frames containing eggs and larvae from other hives.

Lloyd
 
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