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an evening with an Apidea

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Somerford 

Drone Bee
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Well, this ended up nothing like I planned it. I went to take of some supers from a colony I had at the OSR (actually a nuc from Admin last year). After taking the supers off, I thought why not check the brood chamber while I am here....and found 12 capped queen cells, and the old queen had swarmed.

A closer look showed that the bees were entombing the mature queens - obviously considering a caste swarm, so I ferreted around and found a butler cage, a queen catcher and a matchbox and 'pulled' 3 very fine virgin queens into their temporary homes...and watched while another hatched on a frame (the chosen one for this hive)

Called a beek pal who hadn't planned on doing much Queen rearing this year and asked to borrow an apidea or 3, which was no problem.

A cupfull of super bees covered in icing sugar in each later and (I know, risky) a virgin popped in each apidea, and we'll see what we get in a couple of weeks time !

From a genetics perspective, each queen was almost black.

regards

S
 

Poly Hive 

Queen Bee
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My one comment is I would have given a mug of bees not a cup. Mind you our brekkie cups are very big...

PH
 

beebreeder 

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If you have to make mini nucs up with a virgin queen rather than a queen cell then I mist spray the lot with VERY weak thymolised syrup just to give them something to do and by the time they are cleaned up the queen is accepted, seems to work for me, do you keep the made up nucs in a cool dark place sealed up for two or three days with fondant and move them to a new site on release.
kev
 

Somerford 

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thanks BB - I didn't have any syrup to hand so used icing sugar instead. I moved the nucs from the source bee apiaries the same evening and for the first time in a long time I have bees in the garden !
 

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