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Author Topic: Queen cell questions  (Read 1878 times)
Mklangelo
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« on: July 02, 2007, 01:19:55 PM »

I'm a bit confused on how to tell a drone cell from a queen cell.  I have one beekeeper around here that tells me that a queen cell does not necessarily point downward.  I also think that a drone cell will be at the bottom of the frame usually.


Can someone tell me definitively how to tell the difference since I think it's time to start thinking about swarm prevention.   


Thanks in advance.
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Mici
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« Reply #1 on: July 02, 2007, 01:27:24 PM »

1st of all, drone cells can be seen in abundance, while queen cells.... if you see 5 or 6 cells of a kind on one frame, they're probably queen cells.

anyway...it's almost impossible to mix them up, just do a search on google for both, look at them and that's it.

so far i haven't seen a QC that wasn't pointing downwards, what your friend probably actually meant is, that they are not necessarily started at the bottom of a frame, that way, they start as normal WC but get prolonged and downward pointed. this happenes in cases of suprecession or emergency queen raising.

still...swarm prevention is not really succesfull if they make QC as swarm cells so...your point is to never see them Wink well, not never, just...not in a swarm manner.
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Mklangelo
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« Reply #2 on: July 02, 2007, 02:34:32 PM »

1st of all, drone cells can be seen in abundance, while queen cells.... if you see 5 or 6 cells of a kind on one frame, they're probably queen cells.

anyway...it's almost impossible to mix them up, just do a search on google for both, look at them and that's it.

so far i haven't seen a QC that wasn't pointing downwards, what your friend probably actually meant is, that they are not necessarily started at the bottom of a frame, that way, they start as normal WC but get prolonged and downward pointed. this happenes in cases of suprecession or emergency queen raising.

still...swarm prevention is not really succesfull if they make QC as swarm cells so...your point is to never see them Wink well, not never, just...not in a swarm manner.

So in other words, I need to positively identify my queen or at least see eggs, then go through and destroy any downward pointing cells?

As for what the other beekeeper thought, he was referring to queen cells not always pointing downward.  Am I under the correct impression that a drone cell will almost always be at the bottom of a frame?  The Wisconsin Apiary inspector was out here and said they make the drones at the bottom because they generate lots of heat because of their size and bees instinctively know that heat rises since it's all about keeping the brood warm.
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Mici
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« Reply #3 on: July 02, 2007, 02:57:32 PM »

now....i see you really need to read a bit more about swarm prevention. i suggest you visit M. Bushes site.
even though there's a queen inside the hive, you most probably won't stop them from swarming with destroying QCs. if you destroy QCs, the old queen will leave with the swarm, and since there's no young brood in that hive, they won't be able to raise a queen, so you'll have a queenless hive.
really, read more about swarm prevention.

all i can say is that the inspector is...wrong.
IF drone cells are at the bottom, it's because foundations are usually slightly smaller than frames, so...when you install the foundation you press it to the top leaving an inch or two gap at the bottom, that's why they make drone cells at the bottom. drones are larger but don't create more heat, on the contrary, varoa is said to like drone cells more because they're a bit cooler.
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pdmattox
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« Reply #4 on: July 02, 2007, 03:01:14 PM »

I would not say you need to destroy the cells. You could use them to make up splits and such.  Most of the drone cells are at the bottom of the frame but that is not always the rule.
here is a queen cell.
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Mklangelo
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« Reply #5 on: July 02, 2007, 03:07:49 PM »

I would not say you need to destroy the cells. You could use them to make up splits and such.  Most of the drone cells are at the bottom of the frame but that is not always the rule.
here is a queen cell.



I'd love to do that but alas... new wooden-ware is not in the budget until winter time.  But I have learned the lesson of keeping at least one spare set of boxes on hand... In this climate, it's a bit on the late side to do a split anyhow.
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Mklangelo
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« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2007, 03:09:12 PM »

now....i see you really need to read a bit more about swarm prevention. i suggest you visit M. Bushes site.
even though there's a queen inside the hive, you most probably won't stop them from swarming with destroying QCs. if you destroy QCs, the old queen will leave with the swarm, and since there's no young brood in that hive, they won't be able to raise a queen, so you'll have a queenless hive.
really, read more about swarm prevention.



I will but really, there is brood of all ages in that hive, with lots of unworked foundation.
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If the automobile had followed the same development cycle as the computer, a Rolls-Royce would today cost $100, get a million miles per gallon, and explode once a year, killing everyone inside.
  - Robert X. Cringely
Mici
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« Reply #7 on: July 02, 2007, 03:13:30 PM »

ummm, you never actually said it, if you're trying to tell it. that you have a hive with a QC.

if you do, check the positioning, if it's like in the picture pdmattox showed and if there are only..1-3 it's most probably suprecession.
if there are around six and at the bottom of the frame, then it's a swarm.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #8 on: July 02, 2007, 07:51:58 PM »

If the bees are building queen cells and it doesn't look like they should be swarming then the queen is probably failing.  I've destroyed queen cells when I can see the old queen only to find the old queen still there three weeks later and NO brood or eggs.  The bees know what they are doing.  Destroying queen cells is  a recipe for queenlessness.

http://www.bushfarms.com/beeslazy.htm#stopcuttingswarmcells
http://www.bushfarms.com/beesswarmcontrol.htm
http://www.bushfarms.com/beesfallacies.htm

Drone cells are always horizontal.  Sometimes at weird angles to the frame, but still horizontal to the earth.  Queen cells are never horizontal.  They may curl a little on the tip, but the tip is still basically pointed down.

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Michael Bush
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Cindi
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« Reply #9 on: July 02, 2007, 10:19:16 PM »

Mklangelo.  There is some good answers to your questions that have been posted.  Once you identify what a queen cell looks like, you will never mistake any other kind of cell for it.  It looks basically like a peanut.  A drone cell looks like a big bump on the frame.

This is a picture of three queen cells that were in one of my hives.  I made a cut down split from this hive that had the queen cells and they raised a new queen and she is laying beautifully.  The cut down split I let the old queen  be in and she is still laying beautifully.  This prevented some swarming that was obviously in the workings.  This information of the cut down split was with the thanks from Michael Bush's website, a wonderful place to learn. 

This is what the three queen cells looked like.  Have a wonderful day, great life and good luck.  Cindi

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