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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just done inspections on my hives on one of the hive that I had to replace the queen not to long ago found two queen cells. Did not know what to do so I removed them both. Was that the right thing to do? The other hive was inspecting found a queen cell but it looked as if she had already come out of the cell not sure what to do or what is going to happen there. Could someone please let me know what to do and to expect could happen next.
 

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You didn't say whether or not you saw the queen that you installed. Do not cut queen cells until you are sure there is a queen in the colony. If something has happened to the queen you could end up with a queenless colony.

If you have a queen and queen cells then it is either a supersedure or they want to swarm. With only two cells I would say a supersedure taking place. You can leave the cells and let the supersedure run it's normal course or you can remove the queen in a nuc. The colony will then have a queen emerge, mate and head the colony. Often in the nuc the original queen will build the nuc up to eight or ten frames before being superseded in late summer/early fall.

You have already cut the queen cells so wait three or four days and check for more queen cells. If they make more cells then decide what you want to do.

The second hive either has a queen, a virgin queen, or both. A virgin is hard to find in a full size colony so it may be best to wait until she starts to lay and then decide if you want to keep her or buy a replacement. I have had good luck with superesedure queens, others have not. It's the luck of the draw.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yes I saw the queen in the hive. I am a just learning this only have three hives thus far when you say supersedure taking place what exactly does that mean? Like I said I am a new bee keeper and still have alot of questions.
 

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Where were the queen cells on the frame? Bottom? Middle? Top?

Were they empty cups? Filled with royal jelly? Sealed?

Were there eggs and brood in the colony?

Was the comb packed with nectar leaving the queen with no where to lay?
 

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Supersedure is when the colony, for whatever reason, decides to replace their queen. This is not an emergency replacement, the old queen is still in the colony and is still laying eggs. I have seen the original queen and her replacement laying eggs on the same frame and the original queen continued in the colony for five weeks after the new queen started to lay.

The bees will start supersedure queen cells from eggs that they choose, not larvae. In supersedure there are not as many queen cells started as there are swarm cells when they want to swarm, and supersedure cells are usually on the face of the comb, not on the edge of the comb. I think this is because the queen has reduced her egg laying and the brood area of the comb has shrunk. The cells will be made where the larvae/egg boundry is.

Here in north central Arkansas supersedure usually occurs at the end of the main nectar flow (mid June or early July) or during the Field Asters nectar flow in mid Septerber to mid October. If there are enough drones in the area for the queen to mate with the queen is usually a good one. If there are few drones, then the queen can become a drone layer or fail in early spring.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
Ok in one of the hive there where two queen cells in the middles of the frames. They were sealed and when I removed them there was what appeared to be a queen bee about to come out she was not fully developed yet she was still White in color. The other hive they were in the same spot middle of frame and it was open and empty. If this is just a natural accurance and the supercedure cells come back then I will leave them alone and let nature take its course. I just thought queen cells means swarms. I guess now my question is did I really screw things up by removing the queen cells from the hive???
 

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Ok in one of the hive there where two queen cells in the middles of the frames. They were sealed and when I removed them there was what appeared to be a queen bee about to come out she was not fully developed yet she was still White in color. The other hive they were in the same spot middle of frame and it was open and empty. If this is just a natural accurance and the supercedure cells come back then I will leave them alone and let nature take its course. I just thought queen cells means swarms.
I believe you explained it without realizing it.

If the cells were in midde/top of the frame generally speaking this is a supercedure cell

If its on the bottom its a swarm cell.

Chances are they are trying to replace the existing queen for some reason and you just set them back a month or more by knocking down those cells.
Is the queen still laying? Are there eggs in cells? If there are then they will likely just build more supercedure cells to replace the existing queen.

If there are no eggs then the queen may have already failed and you may or may not be queenless.

The bees know what they are doing and its in your best interest to think before knocking down queen cells.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Yes the Queen is still in there and she is still laying there are eggs and larva all over the frames. Next time I will stop and think before I remove Queen cells. :doh: Like I said I am new at this an still trying to learn. Thanks for the info it sure has helped.
 

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Yes the Queen is still in there and she is still laying there are eggs and larva all over the frames. Next time I will stop and think before I remove Queen cells. :doh: Like I said I am new at this an still trying to learn. Thanks for the info it sure has helped.
Thats good that she's still there and laying, lots of us have done the same thing you did and ended up with a queenless hive....and don't usually make that mistake more than once ;)

I had a colony yesterday that I found a bunch of supercedure cells in, it was a really strong colony so I chose to take a couple of frames out along with one with a QC and made a nuc out of it, if for some reason the original colony goes queenless I can requeen with the nuc....if not then I have another colony.....
 
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