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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've got some hives that came through the winter very strong (6-8 frames of bees). Some are either queenless, or have an unmated queen that's laying drones.

I can get queens in approximately two weeks from a supplier here.

I also have four frame nucs that I could combine with the queen problem hives.

Problem is, if I combine, then I have to take the winter packaging off since it would be two stories. Or, I could put the four frames of the nuc with the queen into the queen problem hive.

Do I sacrifice my nucs, or do I wait for queens?

Thanks,
JH
 

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You say it's a drone laying queen, in that case, you could cage her so she don't mess up all your comb, and wait for the new queens. Kill the drone laying queens and introduce the new queens when they arrive.

If the queenless hives have drone laying workers, they'll most likely kill the queens you try to introduce. You'd have better luck putting the nuc right into the middle of the top box, she'd have some bees and brood with her for protections. Another way is to introduce a frame of eggs once a week into the queenless hives. In about 3 to 4 weeks, they'll draw a queen cell. What I do with laying worker hives is to shake them all out on the ground at least a hundred feet away, and put the boxes of brood and honey back in place, and introduce a queen or nuc in it.
 

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Do what Ray said about shaking the bees off the comb a distance away unless you can find the drone laying queen. Add your nuc in the center of the top box so you don't have to worry about unwrapping now. You wouldn't be sacrificing a nuc. You would be putting it to work. When your queens come you can make another nuc from your strong colonies so you will have another replacement for when another queen fails.
 

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Are you sure your queenless hives are really queenless? Could there be a queen but she just hasn't started laying yet. Maybe you missed her---I have missed queens before. A way to find out would be to put in a frame of eggs from another hive. If they are queenless, they should immediately start queen cells.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yah, they were queenless..... All the signs - bees rapidly fanning, no brood, no eggs, not consuming pollen patties. I used my four framers and incorporated them into the queenless hives. They will be nice and strong for splits in a little while.

Thanks for the advice.

JH
 

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Just curious, but lets say it is a laying worker issue. If you introduce a frame or two of eggs/young brood to the hive, will they create a queen and the laying worker will stop?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well, the only problem would be that the queen would have no drones to mate with, so it would again be a drone layer.

JH
 

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I've read it will sometimes work, but not most of the time.

Just curious, but lets say it is a laying worker issue. If you introduce a frame or two of eggs/young brood to the hive, will they create a queen and the laying worker will stop?
 

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You say it's a drone laying queen, in that case, you could cage her so she don't mess up all your comb, and wait for the new queens. Kill the drone laying queens and introduce the new queens when they arrive.

If the queenless hives have drone laying workers, they'll most likely kill the queens you try to introduce. You'd have better luck putting the nuc right into the middle of the top box, she'd have some bees and brood with her for protections. Another way is to introduce a frame of eggs once a week into the queenless hives. In about 3 to 4 weeks, they'll draw a queen cell. What I do with laying worker hives is to shake them all out on the ground at least a hundred feet away, and put the boxes of brood and honey back in place, and introduce a queen or nuc in it.
Ray,
The reason for doing that is that the laying workers are so fat that they cannot fly and can't get back to the hive. Is that right?
 
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