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Author Topic: Can Q cells be moved at any time?  (Read 2015 times)
Greg Peck
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« on: July 20, 2008, 09:54:19 PM »

Can Q cells be moved at any time after they are capped? I have my grafts which are all capped and are according to the calendar to be emerging around the 24th. I dont know the age of all the larva I used so I am afraid that someone might emerge early and ruin everything. Also I have to be out of town on 22nd which does not give much room for error. I would like to put the cells in mating nucs on the 21st. Is there a problem doing this?

Thanks
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #1 on: July 20, 2008, 11:47:51 PM »

If you are gentle enough, yes.  But they are much tougher on day 14 (from when the egg was laid or 10 from when they were grafted).
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Michael Bush
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My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
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"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
Greg Peck
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« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2008, 07:05:40 PM »

Thanks. I moved them today. When you say you have to be gentle do you mean so that you dont break the cell open or do you mean that you might kill the queen inside? I put them in nucs then transported the nucs to another yard. On second thought I should maybe have transported the cells separate then put them into the nucs once I got to the new yard.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2008, 07:37:14 PM »

>When you say you have to be gentle do you mean so that you dont break the cell open or do you mean that you might kill the queen inside?

I mean you have to keep them upright and not jar them at all.  If you do jar them you can injure their wing buds and you get queens with deformed wings.  If you don't keep them upright, the larvae can get moved or damaged in the cell.  Also, a newly capped queen cell is very soft and can be squished, deformed or torn easily.
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Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
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"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
Greg Peck
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« Reply #4 on: July 21, 2008, 08:12:39 PM »

Well this might turn out to be one big learning experience (code for waste or time)  Sad I am sure they got jarred on there 15 mile trip in the back of my truck.

When I put then in the nucs I just pushed the wooden cup into the comb which made the cell stick out at a 45 degree angle. What is the preferred method to putting the cells into the nucs? Sticking them in the comb did not seem to be the most secure method.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2008, 08:34:10 PM »

Sticking them in the comb is fine, but again, is difficult unless they are on day 14 from the egg being layed or day 10 from grafting.  Before that they are too soft.
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Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
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"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
Greg Peck
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« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2008, 12:08:49 AM »

Well MB you were right. Big surprise there Smiley A person must handle the queen cells gently. I had 18 cells and now I have 6 queens. Some of the queen may have been killed by the other queens as I had put 2 cells in each nuc but I found several live queens with messed up wings. Photos below.

Do the queen when they first emerge look kind of bleached out or white then turn darker in a day or two? I had 2 queens that looked white but other then that there looked ok the next day they appeared to be normal.

So lesson learned. Dont transport queen cells. At least not installed in the nuc in the back of the pickup truck.


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« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2008, 11:16:13 AM »

I never wanted to take a chance by traveling my queen cells, I always have my cells finishers in the same yard I am building my nucs, once the new queens starts laying I might move the nuc's to a out yard just to keep the population or number of hives down in my queen rearing yard, also helps nucs keep from getting robed.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #8 on: July 26, 2008, 01:22:03 PM »

>Do the queen when they first emerge look kind of bleached out or white then turn darker in a day or two?

Yes.

> I had 2 queens that looked white but other then that there looked ok the next day they appeared to be normal.

That's normal.  They are also very soft at first and they get harder.

>So lesson learned. Dont transport queen cells. At least not installed in the nuc in the back of the pickup truck.

Probably a good plan, but if you HAVE to do it when they are 14 days old (counting from when the egg was layed) and not when they are less than that.
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Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
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"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
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