Colony swarming or superseding?

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alancooper 

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9th jun - National single BB, 11 frms brood (just sealed brood), 2 sealed Qcells. Action - both squashed.
21st jun - test frm added. Result - no Q cells drawn.
1st july - no eggs in colony, rest frame added. Result - no Q cells drawn.
12th july - 3 forms brood, BIAS.
Three cheers.
22nd july - 6 frames with brood, 4 sealed Q cells and 1 uncapped Qcell. All Q cells were on different forms and towards the frame edges.
Action - dithering on swarm prep or supercedure?
24th july - uncapped Qcell larva still present, bigger but not capped. Action - decided to gamble on supercedure.
The Qcell will probably be sealed tomorrow (25th) or the day after.
Should I leave the cell or inspect this evening and remove it?
Alan.
 

Finman 

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9th jun - National single BB, 11 frms brood (just sealed brood), 2 sealed Qcells. Action - both squashed.
21st jun - test frm added. Result - no Q cells drawn.
1st july - no eggs in colony, rest frame added. Result - no Q cells drawn.
12th july - 3 forms brood, BIAS.
Three cheers.
22nd july - 6 frames with brood, 4 sealed Q cells and 1 uncapped Qcell. All Q cells were on different forms and towards the frame edges.
Action - dithering on swarm prep or supercedure?
24th july - uncapped Qcell larva still present, bigger but not capped. Action - decided to gamble on supercedure.
The Qcell will probably be sealed tomorrow (25th) or the day after.
Should I leave the cell or inspect this evening and remove it?
Alan.
That genome seems specially eager to swarm. Better to buy a new laying queen and forget such swarmy genes. Or something else in breed's genes.
 

Boston Bees 

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It isn't clear what you did with the 4 sealed QCs on 22/07

It also isn't clear whether you have established whether or not they have already swarmed? Have you seen the Q recently? Or eggs?
 

ericbeaumont 

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National single BB, 11 frms brood (just sealed brood), 2 sealed Qcells. Action - both squashed.
This is the root of your problem, Alan.

1 When there were 11f of brood on 9 June, where the heck was the queen to lay? At the very least they ought to have been on double brood (putting open brood in the top box) three weeks earlier.

2 Squashing QCs may buy you a couple of days but you went againt the wishes of nature and that rarely works; bees will find a way eventually.

3 Supersedure it may have been, but they'll swarm on them in season. Less likely now, but still a risk.

I agree with BB: have they swarmed, is there a recent BIAS trail, and is your Q clipped or marked?

decided to gamble
Bees are now in charge.
 

alancooper 

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It isn't clear what you did with the 4 sealed QCs on 22/07

It also isn't clear whether you have established whether or not they have already swarmed? Have you seen the Q recently? Or eggs?
I removed the 4 capped Qcells. Q not seen since before 9th June. No eggs seen. No eggs seen on 9th June. The colony had not swarmed.
 

alancooper 

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This is the root of your problem, Alan.

1 When there were 11f of brood on 9 June, where the heck was the queen to lay? At the very least they ought to have been on double brood (putting open brood in the top box) three weeks earlier.

2 Squashing QCs may buy you a couple of days but you went againt the wishes of nature and that rarely works; bees will find a way eventually.

3 Supersedure it may have been, but they'll swarm on them in season. Less likely now, but still a risk.

I agree with BB: have they swarmed, is there a recent BIAS trail, and is your Q clipped or marked?


Bees are now in charge.
No eggs recorded since before 9th June.
The colony had not swarmed.
Queen not seen since early May - BAIS record stops between 29th May and 9th Jun. The Q was clipped and marked 2019 - present at first inspection of this year.
Thanks for the guidance - I will be doing swarm control by Demaree this morning.
 

Boston Bees 

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No eggs recorded since before 9th June.
The colony had not swarmed.
Queen not seen since early May - BAIS record stops between 29th May and 9th Jun. The Q was clipped and marked 2019 - present at first inspection of this year.
Thanks for the guidance - I will be doing swarm control by Demaree this morning.
You can't do demaree swarm control without finding the queen, which you say isn't there. It also isn't a method to use when swarm cells have already started, or so I understand.

You've completely confused me (us?) now. You said originally that BIAS seen on 12th July, but now you say no BIAS since 9th June

My guess is that your colony swarmed (4 capped QCs....) but the queen died as she was clipped, and they are now trying to replace her. As such the best thing you can do is leave them alone now, as you've already reduced to one queen cell.

PS check under hive in case queen crawled under there after falling to ground and has made a new nest there!
 
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jenkinsbrynmair 

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Thanks for the guidance - I will be doing swarm control by Demaree this morning.
too late for Demarree - it's a form of swarm avoidance for a start, not swarm control.
I bet they have swarmed if you can't find the queen and they're trying desperately to make a new queen whilst you are happily tearing down the QC's
 

Erichalfbee 

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I will be doing swarm control by Demaree this morning.
Agree with the others. Too late. For next year have a look at this
 

alancooper 

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You can't do demaree swarm control without finding the queen, which you say isn't there. It also isn't a method to use when swarm cells have already started, or so I understand.

You've completely confused me (us?) now. You said originally that BIAS seen on 12th July, but now you say no BIAS since 9th June

My guess is that your colony swarmed (4 capped QCs....) but the queen died as she was clipped, and they are now trying to replace her. As such the best thing you can do is leave them alone now, as you've already reduced to one queen cell.

PS check under hive in case queen crawled under there after falling to ground and has made a new nest there!
Running up to Jun 9th I had recorded BAIS, but no eggs recorded on Jun 9th. When inspections on 12th and 22nd recorded BAIS, I presumed a Q was present. Hence my query - swarming or supercedure?
 

alancooper 

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Consensus is for swarming then.
If, by some chance I do find a Q this morning I will try Demaree. If no queen found, I will remove the only remaining (hopefully, not yet sealed, Q cell), split the colony and give each half a frame with eggs (Wally Shaw,WBA?).
Unknown territory for me!
Thanks all, for the comments.
Alan.
 

ericbeaumont 

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If, by some chance I do find a Q this morning I will try Demaree. If no queen found, I will remove the only remaining (hopefully, not yet sealed, Q cell), split the colony and give each half a frame with eggs
Advice is that Demaree is not the right road, Alan.

If you find the queen you could leave her and make a nuc up with the QC; if no queen is present, better leave them to it.

Above all else, don't destroy any more QCs: use them.
 

alancooper 

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Progress this morning:
No Q found; Yesterday’s Q cell not sealed; 3 more Q cells started in edge cups; much unsealed honey in brood box; Q has laid eggs overnight in all available cells.
Action - I split the colony as guided by “The Apiarist (swarm control when Q not found)”.
And thanks Ericbeaumont, for the advice on using Q cells - I plan to use the 4 Q cells I removed 22nd July. They are in my incubator.
Looking forward to hopefullly eventually finding the elusive Q.
 

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