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I have read all I can find on using cloake board for raising queens. Since I am only raising for myself this seemed the easy way out.

I started today with a strong 2 story hive. I made a special bottom board that is open on both ends and a strip to close off the end not being used. I left the south end open and closed off north end.

I put queen, all capped brood, and empty combs in bottom box. Placed cloake board on with opening to south. Top box has honey, open brood with pollen and couple of partially drawn frames of foundation. Put migratory top with hole for feeder jar and filled with 1:1 syrup.

Plan to graft next weekend so on Th or F plan to go thru and move capped brood down to lower box and move open brood up to top box. Day before graft I will close slide of cloake board, open northern bottom entrance and close southern bottom entrance.

My question is when to pull slide? Some info says day after graft and others say skip one day and pull.

What say ya'll?

Johnny
 

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I've only used mine twice, so still experimenting, both times I removed after 24 hours, the first time I did like they said and removed the open brood, and only got 7 queen cells. the second time removed after 24 hours, but moved the open brood back in with the q cells and got 34 queen cells. bought a second cloak board for this year and plan on leaving it in for 48 hrs the first time I use it, but still debating as to moving the open brood back or not, may try one of each again. I had tried it years ago but can't find my notes, but never got it to produce queens back then. as a backup you might want to start a starter hive at the appropriate time and if one doesn
't work the second will.
 

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For Mike in Syracuse, when would be the earliest you would attempt to make queens here in the north country? I just fed my 4 hives and want to split them and supply my own queens. I also removed seven colonies from buildings last year and I would like to do something similar this summer and will need a queen supply for those too. Queens seem to have 50/50 chance of surviving the vacuum process!
I’m thinking late April? Have queens ready in mid May? Swarming seem to start about late May with the honeysuckle and autumn olive bloom.
 

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For Mike in Syracuse, when would be the earliest you would attempt to make queens here in the north country?
I’m thinking late April? Swarming seem to start about late May with the honeysuckle and autumn olive bloom.
I try to start first batch of queens around the 1st of May, depending on the weather, but you have to start your preperations b/4 that. mostly depends on the weather and enough droans. I have started queens earlier but not in syracuse, I didn't look and see where you are located but if you are in a warmer part of the state you might be able to try it earlier but first time is not allways successful so I would give myself some leaway.
of course with the easy winter and so far easy spring 90 % of my hives are booming right now, and i've even seen minimal droans flying but plan on keeping my head and waiting. good luck
 
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