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Author Topic: Requeening and queen cells - a danger of inducing a swarm?  (Read 3708 times)

Offline Beeswax Bob

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Requeening and queen cells - a danger of inducing a swarm?
« on: April 04, 2008, 12:00:41 AM »
If prior to requeening you remove/have lost the queen - you have induced queen cells. Does this put the bees in a swarming mood. So that when the queen is released the bees swarm with her?

Thanks,

Bob

Offline Brian D. Bray

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Re: Requeening and queen cells - a danger of inducing a swarm?
« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2008, 12:39:19 AM »
If prior to requeening you remove/have lost the queen - you have induced queen cells. Does this put the bees in a swarming mood. So that when the queen is released the bees swarm with her?

Thanks,

Bob

It is possible, but there are several things that affect the answer to your question. 
When a queen is lost the workers will select as many eggs as they can that of the best grade available to make into queens.  Since they don't believe in putting all their eggs in one basket they make, or try to make, as multitude of queen cells so that they can have options.  Some of those options are holding a hatching queen in her cell to see if a better candidate hatches.  Some hives will hold a dozen queens hostage like this until the select the best queen.  Once that queen hatches she goes around and dispatches the remaining hostage and unhatched queens.
In an emergency queen situation all the candidates are of the same age and should hatch within a day of each other.  Emergency replacement is Supercedure in the extreme.
It is possible that a 2nd queen will avoid being killed and survive long enough to take a small cluster of workers with it.  Swarms of emergency queen replacements are an accident and usually no larger than a soft ball regardless of the time of year that it occurs.
Supercedure and Emergency queen replacement are not part of the swarming instinct, it is part of the survival instinct.
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Offline Michael Bush

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Re: Requeening and queen cells - a danger of inducing a swarm?
« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2008, 08:09:40 AM »
>If prior to requeening you remove/have lost the queen - you have induced queen cells. Does this put the bees in a swarming mood.

No.  It puts them in emergency mode.

> So that when the queen is released the bees swarm with her?

Doubtful unless that's what they were already doing and you have misjudged the situation.  Before they swarm they will restrict the brood nest and you might think they are queenless.  A hive about to swarm is usually crowded, makes lots of queen cells, mostly on the bottom edges of comb and usually has a contracting brood nest.  A hive making emergency cells usually makes them all over, not as many of them and they probably aren't real crowded.  A hive that is superseding a failed queen usually has cells up in the middle or top part of the combs, not a lot of cells and any quantity of brood depending on how far failed the queen is.

By "a lot of queen cells" I mean in a booming hive there could be 12 to 24.  By only a few I mean in a booming hive there are maybe 1 to 11.  This adjusts down as the hive is smaller.  For a really small hive five or six is a lot of queen cells.
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Offline jsmob

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Re: Requeening and queen cells - a danger of inducing a swarm?
« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2008, 09:56:52 PM »
What is happening then if making sworm cells ( no eggs just cups) you split the hive and interduce the new queen (about an hour or so later) and they make 2 or 3 superseger cells but again no eggs laid in them

Offline Brian D. Bray

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Re: Requeening and queen cells - a danger of inducing a swarm?
« Reply #4 on: April 17, 2008, 02:37:22 AM »
What is happening then if making sworm cells ( no eggs just cups) you split the hive and interduce the new queen (about an hour or so later) and they make 2 or 3 superseger cells but again no eggs laid in them

Consider queen cups, but no eggs, an insureance policy.  The bees are ready to make a queen if necessary.  It is not unusual for a hive to build queen cups, tear them out, rebuild them, tear those out, etc., all season long.  don't sweat the cups.
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Offline Michael Bush

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Re: Requeening and queen cells - a danger of inducing a swarm?
« Reply #5 on: April 17, 2008, 08:25:05 AM »
>What is happening then if making sworm cells ( no eggs just cups) you split the hive and interduce the new queen (about an hour or so later) and they make 2 or 3 superseger cells but again no eggs laid in them

We have a difference in terminology.  I wouldn't call it a cell of any kind if it doesn't have eggs in it.  Even an egg might get removed shortly.  When it has a larvae in it, I'd call it a queen cell.  Up until then it's a queen cup.  A supersedure cell would have a larvae in it and be up between the middle and the top of the comb.
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Offline doak

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Re: Requeening and queen cells - a danger of inducing a swarm?
« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2008, 04:06:52 PM »
It has always been my understanding, when a Queen is lost for what ever reason and the workers start any number of "Queen" cells, they do not consider themselves Queen less. There fore any attempt to introduce a new Queen will fail. they will Kill any intruder.
I have also experienced this understanding.

This is a good time to use that excluder.
Take a bottom board and put a deep box with drawn comb, put the excluder on, then put an empty box on that.
Take the boxes from the hive you want to check one by one, fume board those one at the time.
The workers (most of them) will go through the excluder.
Yes, it is time consuming, but you will find the Queen/s, if there is one.
If no Queen or eggs or uncapped larvae and no Queen cells, then re Queen.
on the other hand if you find capped Queen or beginning Queen cells, if you want to put in a new Queen then all these Cells has to be removed. Then wait 5 days and check again, when there is no more eggs to make Queen cells from then you can put a "caged" Queen in.

Or you can do it this way.
If you suspect the colony is Queen less, wait at least 14 days or longer and check for eggs and or brood.
The only draw back to this is laying workers developing.
I left one Queen less for 42 days once and they gladly accepted the new Queen.
This was not taken from any publication, it's from doak's bee yard.


I know what kind of  feed back to expect, so have at it.
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Offline jsmob

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Re: Requeening and queen cells - a danger of inducing a swarm?
« Reply #7 on: April 20, 2008, 04:31:46 PM »
To update on the hive. When I split the hive it did have just cups on the bottom of frams. 4days after the introduction of new carrnie Queen there where superseger cups, top of frams. 3days later no queen and larva in drawn out cells. I have left the hive alone since. MB you where right. I did not know it at the time but this was an AI queen and I believe this is alot of my problems. I won't make that mistake again.
Thanks for the  guys!

Offline doak

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Re: Requeening and queen cells - a danger of inducing a swarm?
« Reply #8 on: May 01, 2008, 01:07:47 PM »
What is an AI queen? doak

Offline Brian D. Bray

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Re: Requeening and queen cells - a danger of inducing a swarm?
« Reply #9 on: May 02, 2008, 07:19:25 PM »
What is an AI queen? doak

A = Artifically, I = Inseminated.
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Offline jsmob

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Re: Requeening and queen cells - a danger of inducing a swarm?
« Reply #10 on: May 02, 2008, 07:56:56 PM »
Sorry about that doak!
For what ever reason the girls made a new one, but what I have learned since is that the problem with A.I. queens is that you get semen from a few drones as oppose to when she mates it could be up ward of 45 drones. Better layer (would last longer I would think). But for sure much more genetic material for better diversity in the hive.

Offline doak

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Re: Requeening and queen cells - a danger of inducing a swarm?
« Reply #11 on: May 02, 2008, 08:20:06 PM »
Yea, where was my head/brain? :shock: :roll:doak

Offline poka-bee

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Re: Requeening and queen cells - a danger of inducing a swarm?
« Reply #12 on: May 02, 2008, 08:27:17 PM »
That just takes me into a whole nother train of thought that I don't need to go into!  Glad my daughter isn't here reading this or we would go on for hours.... :evil:  Jody
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Offline jsmob

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Re: Requeening and queen cells - a danger of inducing a swarm?
« Reply #13 on: May 02, 2008, 10:35:30 PM »
OK now I am blushing...doh! :oops:
I better re-read my stuff and watch how I construct my sentences before I post :roll: