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I've read some about fall queens and I would like to try my hand at it this year. I know I'm jumping the gun somewhat by asking this question now but I want to get prepared. In north AL, around what date will I need to make the grafts to have queens ready for the fall flow? Our first frost date is usually sometime in very late October or early November. Is fall queen rearing completely dependent on whether or not there is a fall flow? I guess feeding syrup and pollen patties are a way to work around a drought but I'd rather just let them feed naturally if at all possible.

Thanks for any and all advice.
 

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Raising fall queens can be very difficult. It is difficult to get enough bees for a starter hive w/o weakening other hives too much. It is difficult to get bees in the mood to finish cells. It is difficult to get hives to accept cells. Hive Beetles are always disrupting. All that said, it can be done but you have to plan to feed a lot to get the hives to start and finish cells.
 

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Feeding in the fall invites robbing.
why wait so late? I raise what fall queens I want in july, here where I am the sourwood flow is in july, and the summer solstice is in june. june 21. do you have a honey flow where you are after june but before fall?
 

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Humm, Fall queens. Sounds interesting. Maybe I will try some for this year in
August. By the time the queen got mated if at all will be in early Sept.
I think it all depends on your location with a strong Fall flow to raise some good
queens from. Yes, definitely provide drone comb for the queens to have a
successful mating flight too.
 

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I plan to rear queens in late July early August this year also. Our first frost is called for on October 15th but we seldom see really cold days until into November. We did it last year and although it takes some encouraging bees will rear queens later in the season. Feeding really helps. strong colonies and lowering the number of grafts you attempt to start. I would not attempt to build a full frame of 45 cells in a late season colony. Think more like a dozen or so. Keep it mind that the bees want to do winter prep not spring build up. it takes a bit of coaxing to change their minds. as they kick in you can increase the number of cells you get from them. start three weeks sooner than you think you want to just to get in a practice run. It is easier to not rear as many queens later if you are successful than it is to make up losses when you have no time left.
 
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