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Author Topic: Help needed fast  (Read 961 times)
Dange
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« on: May 19, 2013, 10:43:11 PM »

I checked my hive two weeks ago everything was great. This is the second year for this hive. Tight brood pattern. Plenty of stores of honey and pollen no mites or any other sign of disease.  Checked today no queen no eggs limited larva. The hive was very gentle too.  In any of my inspections I noticed two queen cups that are still in the same spot no eggs or larva either in them. I did notice drone brood but very limited like a normal hive. It's weird that it started when the drones started hatching. But y didnt they make a new queen? What could have happened and what should I do? This is my only hive so I don't have other eggs I could put in. Help please.
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Moots
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« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2013, 10:48:37 PM »

I'm new at this game so maybe others will have some other idea.  However, if you don't have a frame of eggs to give them, I think trying to buy a queen ASAP is really your only other option.
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« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2013, 10:58:35 PM »

Do you have space for the queen to lay?

You will have queen "cups" all the time they are about 1/4th the size of a grown cell. they are ready in case there is a need for them.
They don't make a queen cell just to be making one.  Either they swarm or replace the old queen, or raise an emergency queen if needed. As long as you have open brood,"not capped" I would wait on adding a new queen. If they are in the first stages of rearing a new queen they will not accept another queen. 

I don't know about all these claims of having laying workers so early after a queen is gone. not saying you have that, I once had a colony that was queen less for 42 days, no laying workers, they took the new queen readily. Smiley d2
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sawdstmakr
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« Reply #3 on: May 20, 2013, 12:12:29 PM »

I agree, there is a good chance you still have a queen. I am in my fourth year of beekeeping and I can spot my queen in my observation hive in a few seconds when she is on an exposed side of a frame but even in my nucs there are lots of times that I do not find the queen. If I see eggs then they are OK. I looked at one yesterday in an out apiary that had no eggs, lots of swarm queencells, lots of honey in the brood area, a few young larva, and the equivalent of a frame of brood spread around the nuc. I moved them into a med hive to give them room to grow. I did here one queen pipe one time and I did recheck every single queen cell for a capped one but never fond a queen or capped queen cell.
Do as I am going to do, give them 2 weeks and check them again.
Jim
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JWChesnut
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« Reply #4 on: May 20, 2013, 01:06:52 PM »

It is my grumpy observation that new (and old)  beekeepers crush, main, injure and kill a lot of queens by over-inspecting the hive.

  I cringe everytime I hear them say "I went through my nuc today and I found the queen". Why? If a new hive is fully drawn, add a super, but what good reason on this green earth is there for messing with the brood frames in a new hive.  Let them alone, they don't need you invading their home more than absolutely necessary.

So where do we go from here:
1) sometimes brood comes in cohorts, after a hatch there is a lull, or a shift to nectar collection and away from pollen.  Or just a break in the bloom as summer shifts into gear.  How's the weather been?  
2) if there is worker larvae you have a laying queen in the last 4-8 days, so why would it just expire?

Buy a mated queen -- and you will have new larvae in about 10 days. You will have spent big bucks for the freight and the monarch.  The reaction to the queen cage could determine if the bees believe themselves still queen-right.  If they try and mob the cage, they are likely wanting to kill her.   If (after the intial chaos) they settle down to just a few attendants (check on day 3), it likely they want her to become their new monarch.    

You might end up with 2 queens (as you discover you had a monarch all along).  Come up with a contingency plan for starting a second hive using the duplicate, expensively obtained, but redundant queen -- Buy a frame of capped brood, attendant nurses, and a couple lbs of field bees from someone locally.  Advertise on Craigs List, etc.

Others advocate getting frames of open eggs so a hive can raise an emergency queen.   In my experience this has a low success rate with new or weak hives (it works with strong established colonies).  You need 21 days until the mating flight, and another 22 days until you have ANY new hatch.  Return from the mating flight seems pretty low, with high mortality.   By the time a weak hive gets a second brood to begin hatching, the old bees are likely too few and too tired to get the hive off the ground.  Method might work when you supplement weekly with fresh frames of capped brood (essentially adding about 5000 young bees per week.  But even with a substantial bee yard that is a lot of disruption to the donor hives.

Short answer might realistically be: Catch a swarm, try again.  You have all the equipment, and the drawn combs will help.
« Last Edit: May 20, 2013, 01:24:11 PM by JWChesnut » Logged
Finski
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« Reply #5 on: May 20, 2013, 01:19:22 PM »

.
You saw larvae, and it tells that queen stoped laying about 7 days ago.
It hive has superceded, new queen starts to lay  after few days.

It is otherwise impossible to explain why it has no queen cells there.

Another explanation is that queen is sick, ( nosema). It is there but does not lay.
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Dange
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« Reply #6 on: May 20, 2013, 01:55:04 PM »

I just dont understand why there hasnt been any evidence of queen cells. I know the difference from cells and cups.  and if i injured her while inspecting the hive shouldnt they have made queen cells out of some of the eggs?  another dooming problem is the hive is located by alot of apple orchards and they have been spraying but havent had problems before.  Just weird.  i may try to introduce a few frames of eggs if i can get ahold of one of the commercial guys around town.  My fingers are still crossed tho.
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don2
Doak
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« Reply #7 on: May 20, 2013, 05:27:43 PM »

If something happens to the queen they will build a queen cell around the larvae of the right age. Stay out of the hive for at least 9 days from the last time you noticed eggs and/or larvae. Inspect on day 9 or 10 and if you find eggs and/or larvae it is time for you to start looking at the frames for laying space.

As to my post above. I checked my hive today which is day 8 from the time I found my queen being balled. Thinking it could be possible I could have gotten 2 queens with my nuc I let things ride. I found eggs and larvae today  so I  closed it up. I did not have tom see the queen, To risk injuring her in the precess of trying to locate her doesn't work for me. Don't feel bad, I have over inspected  more than once myself.   Smiley d2
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