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Author Topic: Finding the queen?  (Read 1330 times)
RZRBCK BEE
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« on: June 06, 2009, 07:54:49 AM »

What is the easiest/best way to find the queen at any given time? Is there a specific method that some have when having trouble locating her?
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iddee
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« Reply #1 on: June 06, 2009, 08:43:07 AM »

The best way I have found is "don't look for her". Then she will walk right in front of your eyes.

Other than that, smoke the hive lightly, remove the cover and any supers above the brood chamber, look for the densest bee area between the frames. She will most likely be on those two or three frames.
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RZRBCK BEE
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« Reply #2 on: June 06, 2009, 09:17:36 AM »

Thanks Iddee. So she will usually be where the thickest cover of bees are?
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JP
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« Reply #3 on: June 06, 2009, 09:27:46 AM »

As Iddee has pointed out, check the brood frame sections with the most amount of bees.

Look for a circle of bees, usually she will be in the midst of the circle

In the picture above you can see a circle with her in the middle.



...JP
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JP
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« Reply #4 on: June 06, 2009, 09:36:53 AM »

Here's another picture

Every last bee in the circle may not be literally facing her but the circle of some type is usually present. I do a quick glance of the frame and look for a circle, when you find the circle you will usually find the queen.


...JP
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"Good friends are as sweet as honey" Winne the Pooh

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Michael Bush
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« Reply #5 on: June 06, 2009, 09:46:11 AM »

http://www.bushfarms.com/beesqueenspotting.htm
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RZRBCK BEE
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« Reply #6 on: June 06, 2009, 05:17:01 PM »

You guys are super. Thanks
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Bee Whisper82
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« Reply #7 on: June 06, 2009, 05:39:25 PM »

Thanks for the great info. I have the hardest time finding the queen too. It's like she goes into hiding when the top cover is removed.
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troutstalker2
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« Reply #8 on: June 06, 2009, 09:28:33 PM »


 I have a hard time finding queens also, but I am getting better. I think its best to try not to look at individuals but a section of the frame at a time. It seems for me if I look at sections of frame all of a sudden she just sort of pops out and you see her. I also find that if I need to find her I can find her more often the just looking for her. And if you are not looking for her she is always right there in front of your eyes.

David
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WOB419
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« Reply #9 on: June 06, 2009, 11:24:21 PM »

I see my queen in most inspections, but if I see small uncapped brood (it is very difficult for my eyes to see eggs) then I don't keep the hive open just to look for her.  I am pretty good at figuring out where she is likely to be.  Based on the previous inspections of the hive I have a pretty good idea if she is in the top box or the bottom box. 

I have almost always found her in the middle 2 or 4 frames, so I pull a middle frame first and inspect it.  If it is full of capped brood then she is less likely to be there, but if there is room for her to lay then more likely. 

If she is not on the first frame then I keep it out of the hive and pull then pull the one that is the next closest to the wall (in an 8 frame box I pull #5 and keep it out, then #6 and replace it, then #4 and then #3).  This way the box is divided in 1/2 and she is less likely to cross the space where the frames are missing.  If I don't find her on the frames on the right side then I check the frames on the left side.

Like the others have said, I don't look at individual bees, I watch the general movement on the frame.  The queen moves differently than the other bees.  She moves more deliberately.  She goes where she wants and she doesn't let anything get in her way.  The other bees seem to move randomly, rather helter skelter.  Her body almost looks like a new born baby's little finger being dragged across the frame.  My queens tend to be chestnut colored and the workers are yellow and black striped, so that and her movement helps her to pop out on the frame.

Lastly, that shiny golden crown that she wears tends to set her apart a bit.
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bmacior
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« Reply #10 on: June 07, 2009, 09:59:09 AM »

After you open the hive, wait a couple of minutes.  You'll have a frame with the bees looking up at you.  The queen will probably be on that frame or the ones next to it.
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