Failing Queen

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New Bee
Aug 29, 2010
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I have a colony who's queen has been reducing laying rate faster than the other colonies (thinking she needs replacing). Two queen cells found today with larvae. Should I leave the bee's to it & supersedure may take place with little chance of a swarm leaving at this time of year. Or make up a mating nuc and then reunite... thinking late in the year for this to be successful? Any thoughts and ideas greatfully recieved.
For those of us that clip and mark our queens its not unusual to go into winter with a clipped and marked queen and with reduced full inspections only to emerge in the spring with an unclipped and un marked queen, supercedure can take place very late season, in my earlier years I was told by an experienced beekeeper that the "Bees always know best" and at this time of year that can apply more than at other times
I had a queen superceded and successfully mated in October last year.... but it was warm.
Thanks Beebreeder/Polyanwood, I think that's the reassurance I need to leave them to it, watch them and learn. It's sometimes difficult to know when to get involved and help them out (or hinder them) and when to just let nature take care of it!
If the cells were on different frames and plenty of spare bees were available, I might split off one cell and leave the other. Probably after checking both were ripening nicely.

Not the best time for a nuc what with the wasps, but might be extra insurance.

Your choice, just another option. Me I think in my present situation I would simply let them get on with it as I shall be more likely reducing colonies into the winter than wanting more.

The forward weather forecast might be good, bad or indifferent - and the actual weather will likely not coincide with predictions anyway!

I am still waiting and hoping for a good autumn. No sign of it yet....

Regards, RAB
Has the queen laying reduction coincided with varroa treatment. Hives do vary - some queens ignore Thymol and others go right off egg laying for that time- only to pick up speed when treatment finished- just a thought.
No she's been dropping off fairly quick for 3 - 4 weeks before I treated. Both Q cells on the same frame. I think I'll keep the best, destroy the other and leave it for the bees to sort out. Fingers crossed for a good september and hopefully everything will be just fine.
destroy the other

Or wait until the cell is showing signs of 'ripening' before taking such drastic action at this time of the year?

Regards, RAB