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Author Topic: Checked the hive for the first time  (Read 948 times)
vermmy35
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« on: May 09, 2009, 12:00:36 AM »

I looked in on the girls for the first time today and they are doing great.  Looks like they have drawn out 4 complet frames and 4 others that are 50 to 75% drawn out and 2 that are untouched.  I was able to locate the queen, but I didn't see any eggs and it looks like they filled the outer frames with honey that was uncapped.  The one question I have is they have drawn out some funny cone, what I mean it looks like they made a big ball of comb I am in providing a link so you can see what I mean.  Sorry for the bad pics. I need a new camera and its blurry.
<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/31786829@N07/3514742450/" title="funny looking comb by Rohar_swg, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3417/3514742450_4e9652490a_t.jpg" width="100" height="75" alt="funny looking comb" />[/url]
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3417/3514742450_4e9652490a_m.jpg
« Last Edit: May 09, 2009, 12:16:36 AM by vermmy35 » Logged

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Carl F
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« Reply #1 on: May 09, 2009, 09:12:18 AM »

The picture is "not available" as I am looking at your post but it sounds like you may have gotten a virgin queen.  The colony might be making a queen cell (the ball of wax you describe) to supercede her but they need some of her eggs to make a new queen...  You will need to look again very closely to see if there are any eggs or young larvae in those first four frames.  That is plenty of space and time that the queen should have laid quite a pattern by now.  Look again very closely.  Eggs can be very hard to see--especially if you are using wax or white plastic foundation.  If you have black plastic foundation they are far easier to see.

If you can not find any eggs, you need to get a new queen fast.  It sounds like you started with a package and their numbers are going to start dwindling pretty rapidly due to their natural life span at this time of year.  Ideally you should get some frames of brood and bees from another colony to supplement yours.  With that option you could let them raise a queen but it will be 3 weeks or more until she emerges, mates, and starts to lay.

Sorry for the dire predictions...  Maybe someone else has a better suggestion for how you can procede.
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Carl F
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« Reply #2 on: May 09, 2009, 09:20:06 AM »

I went back and read your post again.  Still not seeing the picture but you didn't say if you have some larvae and capped brood but I assumed there is none.  If there is brood and just a lack of new eggs, the cone is most likely a queen cell with a developing queen inside and supercedure is well under way.  You may be alright--just a delay in brood rearing while a new queen mates and gets going.

Is it possible that the queen you saw is a newly emerged one from anther queen cell or was your queen marked so that you know it's her?  Either way, only one queen will survive.  A failing queen will be killed and any unopened queen cells will be torn open and the "unemerged" queen disposed of as well.
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Doby45
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« Reply #3 on: May 09, 2009, 09:36:31 AM »

The picture.

Does not appear to be supercedure cells, just a secondary layer of comb.  What is directly next to this frame?  Open space?

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kathyp
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« Reply #4 on: May 09, 2009, 09:59:20 AM »

they do that sometimes. you can easily remove that 'ball' at this stage.   take a knife to it.  that white wax is very fragile and chances are it will just crumble.

make sure that all your frames a pushed tightly together toward the middle.  if there is to be any space left, let it be on the outside edges.  even so, they will still manage to build funny still sometimes.
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vermmy35
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« Reply #5 on: May 09, 2009, 10:22:43 AM »

Thanks guys I don't know why the pic would not show up for me.  The frame is upside down so the top is really the bottom that was made on the frames where the queen cage was located so it wasn't all the way together and thanks kathyp I was wondering if I should just go and cut it off or not.  I will cut it off on the next hive inspection there was a smaller one that I will also need to cut off.  It was funny since my wife likes to make candles she was telling me to cut it off, she really wanted it too.  She'll be pleased to find out that they will be coming off this week. 
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vermmy35
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« Reply #6 on: May 09, 2009, 10:31:18 AM »

The picture.

Does not appear to be supercedure cells, just a secondary layer of comb.  What is directly next to this frame?  Open space?




That was where the queen cage was located or right next to it.
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Natalie
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« Reply #7 on: May 09, 2009, 05:33:22 PM »

I cut some of that off one of my frames just this morning. 
My son is excited about bringing it to school on Monday to show the other kids.
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Carl F
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« Reply #8 on: May 10, 2009, 06:43:33 PM »

That's clearly not a queen cell but when your first post said "cone" I pictured a queen cell since I could not see the photo.  There is still a problem if you do not have any eggs.  With that much foundation drawn there is no reason the queen should not have a good bit of it filled with brood.  Get in touch with your mentor or your nearest beekeeping neighbor and see what you can work out for some frames of brood or a replacement queen.
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vermmy35
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« Reply #9 on: May 10, 2009, 07:22:20 PM »

Yeah, I talked to my brother-in-law yesterday and he said to look in on Tuesday or Wednesday.  If I still don't see any eggs or larva I need to order a mated queen and install her.
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Semper Fi to all my brothers out there
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