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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
When introducing a queen, how important is it to poke a hole through the candy in the queen cage? Will it take them a lot longer to eat through the candy without the hole?
 

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Well the hole probably helps. I release the queen right after I dump the bees. Never had a problem with it. There again, that is strictly a personal preference.
 

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They will get her out faster with a hole in the candy, but there are times you won't want to have her out so fast. It's one thing to get a package of bees who have been in contact with the queen for a least a day or two before you get them, possibly as long a 4 or 5 days, and introducing a queen to a foreign set of bees.

Since the bees are already accustomed to the queen in a package, letting her out quickly gets her to work laying faster. A queen in a cage introduced to a split or queenless hive is going to need a couple days where they can't get to her in order for them to accept her (if they do at all), and it's a good idea sometimes to not even pull the cork for a couple days, let alone speed them up as they will simply kill her faster if you let them in faster.

Some people, if the bees seem to accept the queen well, simple pry the screen off the cage and let the queen out when they hive the package. Only real risk there, provided they actually have accepted her, is that she may fly away on you and not return.

If the bees act aggressively toward the queen, I would certainly not puncture the candy, and would leave the cork in for a couple days, too, and recheck. Sometimes there is a virgin queen in a package, and the bees will ALWAYS kill an introduced queen, no matter how long you leave her in the cage with them.

Peter
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I am going to introduce a queen to bees from a trapout. I guess I should leave the candy in tact.
 

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Why people want to try and stab their queens is beyond me. This is one of those old beekeeping myths that keeps on giving.... giving the idiot with the sugary nail in his one hand and a dead queen in the other a chance to keep on giving their greenbacks to the queen producer. I must get 20+ calls a year from people who start out the conversation with the famous new words:" We'll I saw this video on YouTube that told me I should....... Before they get halfway through the speech I know whats coming. O broken heart and wallet on their end and a trip to the bank with a head scratch on my end.... Do you want my phone number before or after you get the nail out of your pocket?
 

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LEAVE THE CANDY INTACT! Especially when requeening a large hive. Nothing bad will happen with leaving the candy intact. If you puncture it and kill the queen ........duh! Then if you don't kill the queen puncturing a hole and they release her before she is acclimated........dead queen. Leave it intact.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I never would have thought to puncture the candy except I saw it on several YouTube videos. I am glad I asked here.
 

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Why was all that candy put in the cage if someone is just going to dig half of it out anyway? Leave it be. If the bees want her out quickly they will eat thru that candy faster.
 

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O.K. , just for the thought of it, if that's the case, why release them directly ? Why not all ways leave the candy in the cage for them to eat it out on there time line ? :pk:
 

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The issue of introducing a queen is very different with a package that has been with her for the last few days and a colony you made queenless yesterday and has never met the queen. The issue is also different if it is a very defensive hive. With a package I do a direct release. If you want to do an introduction, a hole will speed things along, which in the case of the package is a good thing. But if I were introducing her to an established colony that I am requeening, I would not put the hole in the candy. I'd give them more time to get used to her. If it is a hot hive, I'd probably do a push in cage over some emerging brood.
 
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