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redpig 

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Do you consider that amount of drone amongst worker brood on several frames to be normal and nothing to worry about and that the advice I've been given by the regional inspector amongst others is completely wrong?
I'm willing to listen and learn from you if possible because I'm relatively new to this what with it being only my second winter.
 
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jenkinsbrynmair 

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Do you consider that amount of drone amongst worker brood on several frames to be normal
Yes - and was it your regional inspector or an SBI?
Whichever, being a bee inspector doesn't always make one an expert on bees - just spotting bee diseases.
I've heard of some coming out with some totally off tangent ideas.
 

redpig 

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I'm not sure he's a regional inspector for beebase but he's been 20 odd years keeping bees. Its my second winter time around.
Is this a normal occurrence with the queen laying and i don't need to take any action?
Please I don't know what to do.
 
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I'm not sure he's a regional inspector for beebase but he's been 20 odd years keeping bees. Its my second winter time around.
Is this a normal occurrence with the queen laying and i don't need to take any action?
Please I don't know what to do.
I had a lot of drone brood this time last year - more than you’re showing and they get through the winter fine built up v strongly in the spring so I’m glad I didn’t jump to conclusions about queen going drone - there was then, as this year mixed advice from this forum. Only difference for me last year was the drone was more classically on the brood periphery rather than dotted around like yours.
JBM are you reassured because you’re used to seeing this pattern of brood and it generally works out - why would one not come to the conclusion the spotted drone brood like this suggests dwindling sperm. Could it be you think that’s a possibility but there’s enough worker brood to suggest will be ok till spring and can sort issues then? Or is it a philosophy of the bees generally know so if the problems not obvious assume they know what they’re up to - which I could get?

Redpig - re your dilemma. I’ve not regretted following JBM or Beeno’s advice the last 2 years so recon you’ll be ok whichever route you take. Beeno’s is more cautious JBM often has the confidence to give advice/instructions without the reasoning behind it which can lead to nervousness in the execution (no offence JBM 🥴) - seems to work out for people though.
 
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jenkinsbrynmair 

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JBM are you reassured because you’re used to seeing this pattern of brood and it generally works out
That
why would one not come to the conclusion the spotted drone brood like this suggests dwindling sperm. Could it be you think that’s a possibility but there’s enough worker brood to suggest will be ok till spring and can sort issues then? Or is it a philosophy of the bees generally know so if the problems not obvious assume they know what they’re up to - which I could get?
To be honest, I would struggle to justify calling what's in the picture 'spotted drone brood' it would have to be a lot worse before I'd start thinking along the lines of the queen running out of juice, and by that point I'd expect the bees themselves to take appropriate action.
 
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That


To be honest, I would struggle to justify calling what's in the picture 'spotted drone brood' it would have to be a lot worse before I'd start thinking along the lines of the queen running out of juice, and by that point I'd expect the bees themselves to take appropriate action.
Thank you JBM, I feel I’m very slowly at least having the right questions.
 

Erichalfbee 

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I think I must agree with JBM
In my opinion there are not enough spotted drone cells to suggest the queen is running out of sperm. I wouldn’t replace the queen if they were mine
 

redpig 

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Thank you all for your comments.
I have 3 colonies, the colony in question seems strong enough but there is not a great deal of stores. They are laying nectar into the super frames and I'm also feeding them.
I have to decide whether to be cautious and merge or take a chance and hope they survive spring.
damned if I do damned if I don't.
 
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Thank you all for your comments.
I have 3 colonies, the colony in question seems strong enough but there is not a great deal of stores. They are laying nectar into the super frames and I'm also feeding them.
I have to decide whether to be cautious and merge or take a chance and hope they survive spring.
damned if I do damned if I don't.
But more optimistically you might be ok either way -- assuaged if your do and assuaged if you don't?
 

redpig 

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Thanks Bugs,
Its going to throw it down in Sheffield tomorrow and time is of the essence.
More likely assuaged if I do and damned if I don't.
 

redpig 

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Well, I listened to all the comments and contrary to most of the advice I left the colony alone.
The laying went full drone with no worker brood whatsoever.
Damned if i don't eh Bugs?
Oh well, managed to place a frame of eggs and brood in from another colony and hopefully the q-cell hatches and she manages to mate.
Chances = on the slim side.
We live and learn!
 

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Well, I listened to all the comments and contrary to most of the advice I left the colony alone.
The laying went full drone with no worker brood whatsoever.
Damned if i don't eh Bugs?
Oh well, managed to place a frame of eggs and brood in from another colony and hopefully the q-cell hatches and she manages to mate.
Chances = on the slim side.
We live and learn!
Zero I would say, but you can always do a very late unite!
 

redpig 

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No worries, I can still merge as per original intention.
I consider this to be part of a learning process and what I have learned from this is that in future I shall stick to advice given by my mentor, my association head, my regional inspector and beeno!
 

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No worries, I can still merge as per original intention.
I consider this to be part of a learning process and what I have learned from this is that in future I shall stick to advice given by my mentor, my association head, my regional inspector and beeno!
Four beekeeper sources? That's going to yield somewhere close to 12 different schools of thought 😁
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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No worries, I can still merge as per original intention.
I consider this to be part of a learning process and what I have learned from this is that in future I shall stick to advice given by my mentor, my association head, my regional inspector and beeno!
We'll let you PM your issues in future then as you state you're going to ignore whatever we say, save us a lot of bother
 

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