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Author Topic: My most interesting hive inspection so far!  (Read 574 times)
stella
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« on: June 21, 2013, 05:25:49 PM »

2 hives, new as packages in April. 3 year beek.

Inspected my hives today and here is what happened.
Hive 1 has a queen piping. (I LOVE that sound!) I felt that was my cue to leave, so I did.

Hive 2- Lots of drones (or at least way more than hive 1), capped brood, nectar, honey, pollen. The brood nest is spotty. The bees are not acting normal. 10 to 12 swarm cells. So Im standing there looking at all these swarm cells hanging off the bottoms of all these frames and make a decision to cut some off.
 
Now dont shoot me yet because here is where it gets interesting. I cut off a swarm cell, it comes open and a queen comes scooting out and drops to the ground. Oops. She looks just fine. Nice big one. Walking around.
 
I then procede to push the frames back in place and pick up the last frame, which I had set aside, and theres another queen. She is smallish. Pretty just the same. Back in she goes.

Closed up the hive and there on the landing board is this big 'ol queen that had hit the ground. Im freaking out! Shes freaking out! She is scurrying all around not knowing what to do. Im probably talking out loud at this point of panic because I dont know what to do. So I let her crawl up on my hand and I opened the top and dropped her in the hive. Now theres 2 queens in there.
If I made a big mistake with any of these actions, please fire away.


#1: Will the 2 queens duke it out or did I just instigate a swarm by putting her back in?

#2: How long do I wait to inspect the hive with the piping queen?






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hardwood
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« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2013, 06:18:44 PM »

Sounds to me that both hives have swarmed already if you have emerging queens already. They normally swarm just before or as the swarm cells are capped. I would leave them alone for at least 3 weeks if not 4 then check for eggs.

Scott
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stella
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« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2013, 06:32:46 PM »

Thanks. I will wait 3 weeks. Ill die if I have to wait 4. Wink

I have seen no swarming. Not to say that it didnt happen. There are a lot of bees in both hives. Filling 2, 10 frame mediums each so far. I have inspected every 7 to 10 days, adding boxes as needed, manipulating some  frames, but not trying to be too pesky or do too much (hence the swarm cells). 2 weeks ago I added a 3rd medium and both hives have decided to start filling them with capped honey. I sure thought things were going as planned.
Just when I think I might know what Im doing, I find out I dont know much at all. Dang.
« Last Edit: June 21, 2013, 08:47:20 PM by stella » Logged

“The hum of bees is the voice of the garden.” — Elizabeth Lawrence
Dimmsdale
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« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2013, 10:01:55 PM »

That's beekeeping for ya!  I feel that way at least once a month! Lol
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Better.to.Bee.than.not
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« Reply #4 on: June 22, 2013, 01:00:16 AM »

I'd always remove all but 2 viable queen cells. The reason for this is I do not want a strong queen to be in multiple fights, and possibly get damaged in the process or weakened by the first 4-5 fights and polished off by a weaker opportunistic 6th queen that gets lucky and wins.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2013, 11:15:19 AM »

I would split them and be thankful for a lot of nice queens, but that's probably too late now...

They swarmed eight days or so ago (depending on the weather).
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Michael Bush
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stella
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« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2013, 09:53:28 AM »

Thank you all for your input.

I take notes after my inspections and will add your info to them.

With my failing swarm control methods, seems like I am, at least, good at adding bee clusters into the wild.

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“The hum of bees is the voice of the garden.” — Elizabeth Lawrence
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