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ladyrose1956 

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Hi all could you give me some information on bee breeding what equipment will i need i have already a nuc box and frames, i have been told to take a frame out of the hive but not the queen and place the frame with some of the workers in the nuc box so they will breed a new queen and then leave them to it am i no the right track this will be my first time giving this ago so i want the best for the bees i dont want to loose them look forward to hear from you:nature-smiley-014::nature-smiley-014
 

mbc 

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am I on the right track ?

no - unless you want to raise inferior scrub queens
 

oliver90owner 

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It might well work OK but can be a disaster, especially for a beginner.

For a start you need lots of bees. Second, the emergency queen cells produced may not result in a good queen. Thirdly the frame must have eggs and /or young brood present.

A much better way is to build up your colony and either use queen cells when they are about to swarm, or better still, to induce the bees to draw cells which will be far better than emergency cells (oops, no queen - we're dead if we don't do something fast, scenario) by separating the brood from the queen but leaving contact within the hive.

The usual way is to have a second brood box and place a super, with frames, in beteen the two. Restrict the queen to the bottom brood box and the bees in the upper box (with brood and eggs) will draw supercedure cells which can then be split off with lots of house bees and allowed to continue creating a new colony. Simple really.

A few details like feeding, bees going back to the original site, preventing robbing, wasp attack (later in the season) etc., but basically a simple procedure.

Queen rearing in any other form with only the one hive is just a little too ambitious. Start simply and progress to queen rearing when you have more colonies.

Regardes, RAB
 

Bcrazy 

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there is two topics being disscussed here, 1. Bee breeding and 2. queen rearing. What one do you subscribe to ladyrose1956?

Mo
 

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I can understand the confusion, but let's not be too pedantic, I feel it's pretty clear that ladyrose1956 is referring to queen rearing, rather than queen breeding.

To clarify, we rear children and don't breed them, which would imply selection of characteristics etc. a long and detailed process. Even with rearing queens, you can always squish obviously poor specimens, but that doesn't make it breeding.

I'm not sure if Rix is serious or not. Forum activity and profile doesn't indicate a lot of experience in the subject, but obviously knows where to look. Sometimes translating the technique from websites, books etc. loses those little nuances that experience provides over time. Whatever your own experience, encouraging ladyrose1956 to run before being able to walk with confidence is not quite as helpful as may have been intended.

So, it's queen rearing Mo. I'm sure your advice will be well measured and helpful. It's a shame about the thread title perhaps. :)
 

ladyrose1956 

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I am so sorry to you all my title was wrong looking at it i may have mis lead you all as to what information i require, what i would like to know is, i have two hives and my children have just bought me another the question is

Can i take a frame out of the hive as long as it does have eggs in with some of the workers and place it in a nuc and start a new coloney that way not breed a queen or breed bees just start a new coloney
 

Flatters 

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Hi Ladyrose,
It will be next year before you can do anything so I would have thought that the best way to colonise the new hive is wait and do an artifical swarm from one of your other hives when the time is right.

Just taking a frame of eggs out is not likely to work as there will not be enough bees to make it viable. Remember you are trying to manage a bees natural life cycle so you need to be repectful of that.
 

the naked beekeeper 

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If I understand right you have two 'hives' and wish to 'make increase'.
Do you mean colonies or just simply hives?
The more pertinent your post, the better your replies will be.
And also a little reading and research will help from any of the many good books out there.

If I understand you to have 2 colonies and 1 empty nuc, I would wait until one of your colonies starts to make swarm cells. They will have been made with the prospect of the queen carrying on the colony's progeny, so will have been cared for.

I would take one frame, making sure the existing queen is not on it, which contains two swarm cells with larvae in and transfer them into the nuc. Knock out any other swarm cells, both on the frame (bar those two) and on the remaining frames in the swarmy hive.

Move the swarmy hive several feet away and take out a frame of stores, a frame of pollen and two of brood with stores and put them into the nuc, again checking the existing queen is not on them. The nuc should be put on the site of the swarmy hive.

What will happen is the flying foraging bees will return to the nuc and realise they are queenless, but have the opportunity to raise one from one of the two cells when it hatches.

The other hive will be considerably weaker and will invariably 99% not swarm. But they will have lost their foraging work force and brood, so may need a supplementary feed.

This will give you increase and prevent your colony from swarming, but will come at the cost of honey production.

Hope this helps.

If you have 2 colonies, you could wait for the colony with the better characteristics to produce the swarm cells and use those to make increase and that would be some good 'bee improvement'.
 
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Hivemaker. 

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What will happen is the flying foraging bees will return to the nuc and realise they are queenless, but have the opportunity to raise one from one of the two cells when it hatches.
They will then swarm with the first virgin to emerge....and make even more cells from the frames of brood they have,that will be one seriously packed out nuc box.
 

the naked beekeeper 

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I did think whether to leave the nuc on a new site or put it on the old.
I said on the old site, so that the foraging bees will give the new queen every possible bit of strength to be reared. Rather than a nuc full of a few nurse bees...that was my thinking.
Either way, the principle remains the same...
 

Hivemaker. 

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You will by doing this be trying to cram nearly an entire colony of bee's,(which are already in swarming mode) into a five frame nuc box....with three frames of brood...and two existing cells....plus any extra one's they pull.....they will swarm for sure...maybe twice. Thats if they can even all fit into the nuc box.....some may need to wait outside.
 

oliver90owner 

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Much preferable to put the old queen with one frame of brood and food in the old hive and raise a queen cell in the other part. Move queen cell hive to other side of old colony a day before emergence and the queencell hive is unlikely to swarm as it loses all it's flying bees.

RAB
 

the naked beekeeper 

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You will by doing this be trying to cram nearly an entire colony of bee's,(which are already in swarming mode) into a five frame nuc box....with three frames of brood...and two existing cells....plus any extra one's they pull.....they will swarm for sure...maybe twice. Thats if they can even all fit into the nuc box.....some may need to wait outside.
Ok then, just put the nuc onto a new site.

Simples really.

Edit - Hello Hivemaker, good evening to you too!!
I await a discussion at your leisure!
 

Hivemaker. 

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Hello Hivemaker, good evening to you too!!
I await a discussion at your leisure!


Good evening Mark.....we will have this tbh chat soon...lol.
 

Skyhook 

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Ladyrose 1956, the method described by Oliver90Owner is laid out in detail in Ted Hoopers book. If you don't have it, put it top of your Christmas list.

All the best
 
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LadyRose, there are almost as many ways of rearing queens as there are bees in a hive. It can be very confusing and a quick internet search will throw up names like Miller, Snelgrove etc.

The Hooper book is an excellent beekeeping book but it doesn't really go into enough detail I fear for what you are trying to do. With experience you can follow his methods but if this is new to you then look elsewhere.

The simplest way to raise new queens is to let the bees do it with minimum intervention by the beekeeper. Techniques like grafting, cell punching and the like are perhaps left until you have a bit of experience.

If you start weekly inspections in the Spring I would be surprised (if your queen is a last year's model) if at some point you don't find queen cells. When you do you can simply split the colony into as many parts as you have nuc boxes and spare hives, ensuring only one queen cell goes in each new colony. Some leave two cells on each frame but to play safe I suggest leave just one. You can arrange this mixture of nucs and hives in a circle facing inwards around the site of the original hive which must also join the circle. Within a month you should find new queens in every colony although the odd dud is to be expected, especially if the weather is poor.

If you don't have spare nucs then simply put the frame with a queen cell in the middle of the one nuc you have surrounded by one frame of sealed brood, a frame of pollen and a couple of frames of stores. Replace these with frames of foundation in the original hive.

Ideally the nuc needs to be taken to a new site but it will work if you put it a few yards away from the old hive. If you are going to do this then add some extra bees to the nuc by shaking bees off frames from the old hive. The flying bees will return to the old hive if you don't move it but the non-flying nurse bees will stay in the nuc, which is what you want.

If the bees decide not to swarm then you can do as you originally suggested but instead of giving them a frame with a queen cell give them a frame with eggs on it, adding the others as suggested with the pollen on one side of the eggs frame and the sealed brood on the other, stores on the outsides. If doing this stuff the nuc to the gunnels with bees shaken off frames from the old hive. Make sure the queen is not one of them! She must remain in the old hive.

The bees may try to raise more than one queen so remove all queen cells except one. As there is no existing queen in the nuc the bees will not swarm if there is one cell but they may after the first queen emerges if you leave more than one queen cell. As you gain experience you might try leaving multiple cells and cut them out when sealed and transfer them to other colonys and nucs. It is possible to re-queen by simply adding a sealed queen cell to an existing hive, ensuring the sides of the cell are protected by tape or foil. It is not necessary to remove the old queen if following this method. It is not 100% successful but will work in the majority of cases. 90%+ has been reported.

If the above works for you then a bit of winter reading for next year would be helpful. I suggest start with Queen Rearing by Vince Cook which you can get from Northern Beebooks. It is short and easy to understand.
 

wilderness 

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