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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here is a bar I would like to get opinions on if some experienced queen rearing judges would be so kind to do so. It may appear in the picture that there is RJ filling the cups however this is the case in only one. The rest of the cups have only about an average of 25% of the cups filled. These were grafted on Monday PM
Thanks
View attachment 11476
 

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Well, for a bar I'd say the music stinks.But it looks like you will get about 12 good cells. Might bee a little short, but plenty good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
OK. I destroyed them. I felt like the RJ was very inadequate. The cells were maybe 90% as large as good swarm cells the hives make. If I'm growing my own I have the luxury of waiting for a better than average looking cell(s).
I'm giving it another shot today but will begin with putting some open brood in the starter I made yesterday to see about kick starting them as I've read about here.
I got a swarm yesterday and will add some of the bees from it to the starter. I've been feeding syrup to this starter which is a three high nuc that I had been using to finish a few cells. It had 5-6 frames of sealed brood which is hatching and has no open brood. Should be packed.
 

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All of them? What a waste. Looks can be deceiving. What did you have to loss by letting those cells produce queens? had I been close to you I would have been grateful for those cells. I would have made nucs w/ them. Did you examin them while destroying them to see how the pupae was developing? Maybe you should have dissected all of them so you could see the difference between the ones that looked like what you preferred and the ones you didn't.
 

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I too, thought your cells looked quite acceptable. I would, at least, have let them emerge into cages, to see how well they finish, or if nothing else, do as I've described in my next paragraph.

But, like Mark said, any cells that fail to emerge, or any that I intentionally discard, I'm going to carefully open each one and examine the contents, or lack thereof - trying to learn as much as I can, about the process. That's how I've observed pupae develop in a jack-knife position, with their head and tip of abdomen, both pointing down. Double occupants, both undersized. And some with BQCV, etc.
 

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Nothing visibly wrong with those cells. Very likely they could have produced queens with as much potential as any others.
 

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OK. I destroyed them. I felt like the RJ was very inadequate.
Oh well ,spilt milk:(, think of it as grafting practice. I have done what Joseph and Mark said many times, you can even open a cell and put it back together and it will still work,lots to learn. You'll get it:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Oh well ,spilt milk:(, think of it as grafting practice. I have done what Joseph and Mark said many times, you can even open a cell and put it back together and it will still work,lots to learn. You'll get it:)
I should have clarified. I froze the cells. I'm going to look at them today and will post pictures.
This is basically practice for me although I do need Queens and hopefully this next go around will give me as many as that last batch. I'm trying to get them a little larger as I've seen here and maybe fatter. I also was under the impression the cups should have more RJ in them.
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The quantity of RJ seen in the cups varies somewhat by how old the larva is! We look to see if the have eaten most of it out. To have done so is a good thing when its time to candle!
 

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Unless there is so little an amount of royal jelly that the larvae eats it all does it matter whether there is a lot opposed to enough? Asking because I don't know.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I don't see discarding these as a waste in any form or fashion. It's part of my learning process so I'm looking to evaluate and try to make as good a batch as I can before I'm forced to use whatever this next graft gives me. I am ready to do several splits soon and I'd like to get several queens mated and evaluated prior to putting them into nucs/splits.
I opened the cells that were on the two bars I did:
View attachment 11530
View attachment 11531
There was one or two that were not yet capped which is expected as these were only done 5 days ago.
Some of the grubs are smaller than others which would indicate that the larger ones had undergone one instar more than the other smaller ones yes?
I am please with the percentage of those that were started successfully for sure. Considering the previous two or three attempts resulted in about a 10% success rate. From the best that I can tell the higher start was solely due to a stronger starter colony.
Tomorrow I am going to make a starter that is even more populated. I actually made it yesterday but decided to wait another day because I wanted to give them a frame of open brood today to kick start them. I neglected to do that yesterday. In addition I captured a swarm yesterday and it appears that I missed the queen. It was not the dreamy flick of a branch swarm capture. I plan on adding a fair amount of bees from this swarm to the starter colony. I've read a swarm is primo starter colony material. Is this a popular opinion?
Thanks
 

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For what its worth... Assessment of 17 cells, Empty 1, 9, 12, 14, 17 (the no brainer ones), Too Short (for whatever reason, maybe the picture, I can't get a good reference on the length of each cell but they all look short when I compare them to a supercedure cell I used for reference, the longer the better the queen should be), 2, 4, 15 (questionable), Shortage of RJ 4, 6, 7, 8 (8 is questionable), Enough RJ 3, 5, 8(questionable), 10, 11, 13, 15 (questionable), 16. The winner from the set would be 16.

I agree with your decision to not raise this set. I will not raise any that look questionable as I am trying to raise queens with specific traits. This is just my opinion.
 
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