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I have been reading several different texts on queen rearing lately. Some of the older ones have dealt with not using grafting. So in the process they either prepare frames specifically to encourage building a queen cell in a particular location, or damage a cell in such a way that the bees are supposed to think it is ready to be made into a cell etc While others do some sort of stimulus to cause a hive to think it wants to swarm and it causes it to make swarm cells.

A few things come to mind, that so far have not been addressed. It is common to see "When the cells are this many days old, cut them out of the foundation with a 1/2" margin all around them, being ever so careful etc. etc." The question this brings to mind is, why not simply place protective cages around the capped cell and allow it to completely hatch, simply then dealing with a live virgin to be introduced into a mating nuc, rather than what sounds like a very particular process to transferring the ripe cell? I assume there is some magic that a hatched virgin has over an introduced one might, but that was just a guess.

They are using terms like "mother hive" "donor hive" "cell builder" and maybe a few others. These make it sound like you would have one hive for 1 specific purpose, and another for another purpose, and so on. Am I reading this right, or are you doing something to a hive to make it have one behavior, then changing it to have a different behavior, and so on?

Right now, I am just reading everything I can get my hands on, but are there some recommended "must-reads" and "common basics." Or possibly known charlatans or debunked ideas that should be avoided?

Something else came to mind, and perhaps it is just silly, but under the auspices of "no stupid questions". Since bees build comb at 10° could someone simply flip a frame upside down 180° rather than "stretching the cell down"? I am imagining a frame where you have flattened the cells above and below a particular swath, then placed in a position where the queen would like to lay in that middle area. Then (through some magic involving the ears of the frame) flip the frame upside down, so that these freshly laid cells are all 10° facing downward. I haven't read anyone doing this yet, but I can't imagine it hasn't occurred to anyone before. But is just idle curiosity.
 

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I have been reading several different texts on queen rearing lately. [...] A few things come to mind, that so far have not been addressed.
So - with your vast practical queen-rearing experience you can see possibilities that no-one else has seen during the last 150 years - am I reading this right ?

Something else came to mind [...] Since bees build comb at 10° could someone simply flip a frame upside down 180° rather than "stretching the cell down"? [...] I haven't read anyone doing this yet, but I can't imagine it hasn't occurred to anyone before.
Rotate the frame through 90° - it's called the Hopkins Method.
LJ
 

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So - with your vast practical queen-rearing experience you can see possibilities that no-one else has seen during the last 150 years - am I reading this right ?No, I think I am saying the opposite. Or at least I am saying I am not reading the right things. Because I haven't seen reference to such yet. Normally when I come on something new, and my mind says "Hey, why didn't they just do XYZ?" Rarely have I come to a novelty. And the answer usually starts with "Because" and ends with "Dummy!" :) I still ask those questions though, though the answers don't reveal a novelty, many times they do reveal an aspect of the processes that I hadn't quite grasped up to this point.



Rotate the frame through 90° - it's called the Hopkins Method.
LJ
Is this the one with the triangles?
responses inline
 

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Here are all the foundations of other queen rearing methods:
http://www.bushfarms.com/beesoldbooks.htm

Hopkins, Alley, Smith's Better Queens and Miller are all graftless methods. Doolittle, Smith's Queen Rearing Simplified are grafting methods.
 
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