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Another factor that affects acceptance is how long the queen was laying in her mating nuc before she was caged. Most of the literature states that acceptance goes up significantly after three weeks. This allows the queen to mature and develop her full complement of pheromones. We like to have ours lay for a minimum of two brood cycles before caging, this way the queens are thoroughly vetted, matured, and acceptance should be very high as long as basic best practices are followed.

"The survival of honey bee Apis mellifera queens to 14 days and 15 weeks after introduction into an established bee colony increases with increasing age of the queen at introduction."
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