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Author Topic: Laying workers  (Read 1532 times)

Offline doak

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Laying workers
« on: May 10, 2007, 08:53:03 PM »
3 or 4 years ago I had a colony that went queenless for some unknown reason to me. I checked it every seven to ten days to make sure it did or did not have a queen.
How long does it take for workers to start laying? who knows?  I think it depends on some other factors.
Mine was queenless for 44 days and accepted the Queen with out a problen.
Any ideas??

Offline Finsky

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Re: Laying workers
« Reply #1 on: May 11, 2007, 01:22:59 AM »
When I have mating nucs, and I take queen into usage, sometimes it does not take many days when workers start to lay eggs.
Mostly egg laying workers are tens in small nuc.

Offline Brian D. Bray

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Re: Laying workers
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2007, 08:41:34 PM »
The span from going queenless to laying worker varies from hive to hive.  I've had laying workers within 10 days in some hives and still no laying worker after 50 in another.  There is no definite timetable.  I generally take the tact that after 10 days the hive has probably developed a laying worker and attack the problem by using brood comb from another hive.  That almost always tells me what I need to know: still queenless and no laying worker=queen cells, laying workers= no queen cells and multiple eggs in hatched brood area.  In the later case it's shake out the hive and requeen, place queen cell in hive, or combine.
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Offline Michael Bush

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Re: Laying workers
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2007, 11:14:51 PM »
Part of the lack of timetable is it's not queenlessness that leads to laying workers, it's broodlessness.  If the hive loses a queen, there is still open brood for the next 9 days or so.  If the hive has no brood from the start, then it will go laying worker sooner.  So if a package loses a queen in transit or before she lays, it will end up with laying workers sooner than if a hive with open brood loses a queen.  Usually from the time I lose a queen to laying workers seems like about three weeks.  But 9 days of that there was open brood.  So 21 - 9 would be about 12 days of broodlessness to end up with laying workers from my observation.  Sometimes less.
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