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Author Topic: Got a new queen -- YAY!  (Read 3263 times)
Kris^
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« on: July 25, 2004, 12:32:38 PM »

Last week I reported that after an inspection, I could not find my marked queen, or any eggs in any of the comb, either.  A few of you suggested I wait  a week or so to see if the colony raised a new one.  Well, I'm glad to say that they apparently did.  I went into the hive earlier this morning and, as I was  pulling the sixth frame in the top box, I caught a glimpse of a l-o-n-g, smooth and plump abdomen running around the bottom of the frame to the other side.  No mistaking that!  At that point I proceeded with caution, and did not poke around the mass of bees piling up on the frame, for fear of injuring her or spooking her away.  But I looked at where I initially saw her, and there was an area of comb with eggs.  I also found eggs in an adjacent frame, too.  I closed up after investigating the hive, knowing that things were well back on track.  The colony seemed quite a bit mellower this morning than any other time during the past couple of weeks.

The colony has been busy in many ways this week. Last week, the honey super I had placed on top of the hive was virtually untouched, with very little comb having been drawn.  Today, all the frames had drawn comb, and much of that had nectar (but no capped honey yet).  So I placed another super of foundation on top.  I placed it on top instead of between the brood chamber and the honey super because I didn't want to run the risk of separating the queen from the brood box.  

Yeah -- when I found the queen and the eggs she was laying, she was in the honey super.  I'd like to get her out of there and put the queen excluder in place, if that's possible or necessary.  Only two frames have eggs laid in them; the rest are filling with nectar, so maybe I should leave well enough alone?  Or, does anyone have a sure-fire method of making sure the queen is down below the honey super?  If I do it, I probably should do it pretty soon.  And also, if I do exclude the queen from the honey super, should I extract a few frames of honey from the brood box (if they are still there -- there were three full frames in the upper box alone) in order to give the queen more laying room?

Regardless, I'm glad to find out my colony is still strong and queenright!

-- Kris
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mark
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« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2004, 05:57:21 PM »

glad things are ok.  i have nuc boxes and an obsv. hive so you didn't have too much to worry about if things went bad. would've got you a queen raised.
  would have like to here that you were able to mark your new queen though and i'm curious why they superceded the package queen so soon.  was your other queen as timid  ( running and hiding)?
  what race was your package,(sorry i forget -otd) it may be different now. keep an eye on their aggresiveness now. you've gotten stung too many times already.    if i can help give a holler.
mark
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Robo
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« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2004, 06:11:25 PM »

Kris,

You can physically move her down to the brood chambers and add your excluder if you want.  The brood in the honey super will hatch and they will then fill it with honey.  Now that there is brood and nectar in the super, the bees will go through the excluder.

Make sure the queen has room to lay in the brood chamber.
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"Opportunity is missed by most people because it comes dressed in overalls and looks like work." - Thomas Edison


Kris^
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« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2004, 09:16:20 PM »

Quote from: mark
glad things are ok.  i have nuc boxes and an obsv. hive so you didn't have too much to worry about if things went bad. would've got you a queen raised.
  would have like to here that you were able to mark your new queen though and i'm curious why they superceded the package queen so soon.  was your other queen as timid  ( running and hiding)?
  what race was your package,(sorry i forget -otd) it may be different now. keep an eye on their aggresiveness now. you've gotten stung too many times already.    if i can help give a holler.
mark


Kind of you to make the offer about a queen.  I got a package of Italian bees in April of this year.  I can't guess why the first queen was superceded, although I don't pretend to think it couldn't have been me that did something to her.  I'm may not be all thumbs in the hive, but I don't exactly move as skillfully as a brain surgeon in there, either.   Which is why I didn't want to go whole-hog digging for her after I lost her in the crowd.  

The old queen was not shy or timid (is that a bad trait?), and because of her marking, I was always able to spot her each time I went into the hive.  That's why I felt certain I'd lost her when I didn't see her on my two previous visits inside.  (That and the lack of eggs then.)  I don't imagine that she was too old when I got her, but then, she was marked with white paint, not according to any color scheme I'm aware of.  

Anyway, I'm glad right now to have things heading back on track, and will get things in better order soon.  As Robo suggests, I have to make sure the new queen is below and has laying space before locking her out of the honey super.  But I'm amazed at how quickly they filled a medium super with comb and nectar -- only a week -- when they set their collective mind to actually doing it.

-- Kris
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Robo
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« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2004, 09:44:51 PM »

Quote from: Kris^
But I'm amazed at how quickly they filled a medium super with comb and nectar -- only a week -- when they set their collective mind to actually doing it.

-- Kris


Now you have first hand experience why a lot of folks despise queen excluders.

They are really unnecessary unless making comb honey, in which case you don't want any brood casings in the comb. Most of the time, any brood that the queen does lay in the super will be replaced with honey.  As soon as the brood hatches, the bees will start storing nectar, which will prevent the queen from laying in the cells again.  So unless she is in the area when they hatch, chances are nectar will be put in the cells first.  

Think you might be on your second honey super by now if you didn't use the honey (I mean queen) excluder? Cool

Supercedure can be quite a mystery at times.  Yet another thing we can't pin point.  I too have had perfectly fine (at least to me) queens superceded.

Sounds like things are going quite well for you.  Now that fall is approaching, make sure you keep an eye out for mites.  You don't want to have a dead hive come Spring.
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"Opportunity is missed by most people because it comes dressed in overalls and looks like work." - Thomas Edison


mark
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« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2004, 09:57:41 PM »

actually you don't want her to run on you.  with calm bees the queen goes on about her business like you aren't even there. when mine aren't marked i use white out and mark her right on the frame. that way i don't mess up wings or legs being the clumsy oaf that i am. with the frame over the hive if she drops off she's right where she belongs.
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Kris^
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« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2004, 01:27:01 PM »

Quote from: Robo
Sounds like things are going quite well for you.  Now that fall is approaching, make sure you keep an eye out for mites.  You don't want to have a dead hive come Spring.


I have found a few mites in drone cells on past inspections, but none yet in regular brood.  I ordered a batch of Apistan strips for fall treatment, and I also have some terramycin for foulbrood prevention.  I'm thinking to start the treatments sometime in September, when I start feeding for buildup of fall stores.

-- Kris
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golfpsycho
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« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2004, 02:38:55 PM »

Rereading several posts, it seems people are treating for foulbrood in a preventative manner.  I'm not so sure this is prudent.  Treating for conditions that don't exist can help the disease gain resistance to the chems.  There is a theory that foulbrood spores are present in virtually all colonys, but nobody seems to know what the trigger might be that activates them.  Foulbrood was the scary one 30 years ago.  Back then, I always felt if you could just get the bees on sugar water for a month, in a new hive, you could save them, but that wasn't an option.  Now the mites have replaced it as enemy number one.  Personally, I'm still struggling with a long term solution,  although I am leaning toward small cell and no chems.
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Anonymous
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« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2004, 10:51:31 PM »

I'm of the opinion that treating my hives against foulbrood is akin to taking a shot for the flu. I know the disease is out there and that there is a chance that it might show up at my door step. So why not try to lessen the severity of it if it does? I haven't observed any adverse affects on my bees by treating them so I'm not convinced that not treating them is better for them especially since it eases my mind that I've taken a positive step to help protect my bees
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