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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I installed a package about a month ago. Though I've been thrilled to find that these bees are much more docile than my last year's hive (lost to pesticide spray in the fall), they are not nearly as vigorous. I have a laying queen but I am not impressed with the brood pattern or amount of brood. Nectar has been fleeting this year, which may be the problem.

Today I found an uncapped supercedure cell. I remember reading somewhere that packages are known to do this. Is this true? Is it likely that they are trying to replace that queen?
 

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It sounds like you are not thrilled with this queen.....and neither are the bees. But was there a larva in the uncapped cell? It may have just been a queen cup.
 

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I have recently learned thru the forum that it is fairly common for the bees to make one or two queen cups and just have them on standby in case they need them. My mentor also told me that the queen cups were a way of threatening the queen to "get to work or we can replace you" kind of a thing.

Look for queen cups that have been completely drawn out like a peanut. Then the bees are serious.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I could not see anything in the cell. I was in the hive only a week ago and it wasn't there.

I was originally ecouraged by this queen, as she was laying heartily within a week after getting out of her queen cage. Now, not so much.

Thanks for the responses.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I'm not sure about the terminology "queen cup." How is that different from a queen cell? Is it just the initial phase of construction?
 

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Yes, a cup is exactly that, just a cup. I have even seen eggs in them, then they tear it down and make brood from the egg. If you look, you will start to see Royal Jelly in the bottom of the cell, then you know they are at least trying to make a queen cell. To me, its considered a cup until it has RJ and larvae in it.....
 

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I hived 4 packages this spring one hive within 14-21 days of hiving had 5 capped queen cells. I thought "oh it's gonna be like this already" The first queen emerged and within a day or so they tore down the remaining cells and the hive has been great ever since.

Every now and then I see cups but no eggs in them and they get torn down rather quickly.
 

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Queen cups are just a part of a healthy hive. There are the kind in the photo in the link posted and there are some that are built out from the center of the frame and then hang down.

I don't worry about them and think that they just a part of a hive like drone cells, burr comb, etc. I do admit to looking in them at times just to see if there are eggs or larva, but when they decide to make a queen cell out of it you can tell.
 

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This maybe off subject or just a stupid question. Queen cup with NO egg, have seen this. Now if one sees a cup with an egg in it; how does the egg get there? Does the queen lay it, to replace herself OR do other bees move a layed egg into the cup OR do the bees build the cup over a cell with an egg in it :s Same for swarm cells, were these cell are (normaly) on the lower outside frame were the queen seldom visits, just were do the eggs come from :scratch: Ya I know: from a queen, but does she lay in a cup/swarm cell!
 

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Yes, the queen lays in the cup when the colony decides to swarm or to replace her. As far as I know, bees do not move eggs from cell to cell.
 
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