Quantcast

how best to deal with laying workers late in the season ?

Beekeeping Forum

Help Support Beekeeping Forum:

Hivemaker. 

Queen Bee
Joined
Nov 8, 2008
Messages
14,309
Reaction score
9
Location
Exmoor.
Hive Type
national
How long has the colony been Queenless,and how strong is it,how many frames of bee's,if strong enough the first thing to add is some brood. I have my own way of dealing with them,but won't suggest that way,as that has more to do with bee redistribution.
 
Last edited:

Bcrazy 

Drone Bee
Joined
Nov 14, 2008
Messages
1,491
Reaction score
5
Location
Warboys, CAMBS
Hive Type
none
Number of Hives
nil bees given away all colonies
Do you have any other hives?

If so take a frame of eggs and brood and place that in the QL hive. If the QL hive has been QL for a long time then that might not work.

How do you intend to introduce the new Q from Mike?

Regards;
 

Poly Hive 

Queen Bee
Joined
Dec 4, 2008
Messages
13,653
Reaction score
4
Location
Scottish Borders
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
9 and 18 Nucs
Shake them in the grass and save the money on a new q. Too late. Way too late.

PH
 

Hivemaker. 

Queen Bee
Joined
Nov 8, 2008
Messages
14,309
Reaction score
9
Location
Exmoor.
Hive Type
national
Thats the redistribution method,LOL,i tend to do that with them at any time of year,late or early.
 

FROGDOGDIVER 

House Bee
Joined
Feb 20, 2009
Messages
161
Reaction score
0
Location
Northern Ireland
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
8
How long has the colony been Queenless,and how strong is it,how many frames of bee's,if strong enough the first thing to add is some brood. I have my own way of dealing with them,but won't suggest that way,as that has more to do with bee redistribution.
Ha ha. Bee distribution:) Like your style hivemaker. I am about to erm re distribute a nuc tomorrow afternoon.:seeya:
 

Heather 

Queen Bee
Joined
Dec 7, 2008
Messages
4,099
Reaction score
85
Location
Newick, East Sussex
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
15
But will be active for a few hours!!!

I dumped them late evening. Next morning a neighbour contacted me - were they swarming as quite a few extra in her garden? - my gardener stung ( will she resign :cheers2: - she is always away on holiday- but I cannot find a replacement that knows a weed from a flower and can work without guidance:toetap05:)
 

jezd 

Drone Bee
Joined
May 12, 2009
Messages
1,541
Reaction score
2
Location
UK
Hive Type
other
Number of Hives
299.1
What happens to them once they're chucked in the grass???
chuck on floor as far away as possible, not miles but enough for the young bees to be confused, cluster and die, the older bees will fly back to the hive - drop a frame of brood in from another hive with young bees and your away, next drop in a happy mated queen 2 days later and all sorted, end of problem (x fingers lol)

PS laying worker should be younger bee(s)
 
Last edited:

Hivemaker. 

Queen Bee
Joined
Nov 8, 2008
Messages
14,309
Reaction score
9
Location
Exmoor.
Hive Type
national
They will,if they want a queen,so let them,then 9 days later break down queen cells and add another frame of brood or two,let them build cells,break down and add queen in slow release cage.better still leave her in cage in hive for couple of days before slow release.
Or take to next apairy on good flying day and shake out into air along row of hives.
 
Last edited:

JCBrum 

Drone Bee
Joined
Mar 27, 2009
Messages
1,055
Reaction score
0
Location
Birmingham UK
Hive Type
14x12
Number of Hives
8 ish
I don't really understand why you break qc and add brood twice ? is it to get the rest of brood hatched for some young bees to help the final new mated queen and her eggs/brood ? :confused:
 
Last edited:

oliver90owner 

Queen Bee
Joined
Jul 15, 2009
Messages
15,661
Reaction score
69
Location
Lincolnshire
Hive Type
14x12
JCBrum,

All of the bees will be old bees, or young drones, so not much nursing strength. That is why HM is saying add more brood after finding they might accept a queen.

Initially the bees might be quite happy with their laying workers and not want to replace them. Introducing a queen in that situation is highly likely to end in failure.

Just that it is a dodgy situation, and even uniting the colony with another queenright colony could result in a queenless brood. Bit of a downer even later in the season!

I would at least dump them on the ground away from the hive, hoping the laying worker(s) have never left the nest and would likely be lost, only foraging workers finding their way back to the brood site. That is before a test frame.

Regards, RAB
 

Poly Hive 

Queen Bee
Joined
Dec 4, 2008
Messages
13,653
Reaction score
4
Location
Scottish Borders
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
9 and 18 Nucs
Unless they are a decent strength this faffing around is a waste of time and money, and esp a waste of a good laying queen.

At your own peril do you faff at this time of year.

PH
 

Somerford 

Drone Bee
Joined
Aug 24, 2009
Messages
1,733
Reaction score
172
Location
Wiltshire, Somerset, S Glos & S Oxfordshire
Hive Type
national
Well, in answer to all of the above have united a new nuc with mated queen with the old colony this morning using newspaper and reversing entrances. Yes - fingers crossed they happily unite but the weather isn't too bad, they're taking syrup by the litre and I always think Positively !!

thanks for all the comments and the link to bushfarms. very interesting.
 

aseeryl 

New Bee
Joined
Jun 21, 2009
Messages
99
Reaction score
0
Location
uk
Hive Type
wbc
Number of Hives
2-4
MOVED
I'll post this as the latest episode in a saga related to this subject.
I gave a small nucleus to a friend with an empty hive about 6 weeks ago. The queen in this disappeared.( It was a virgin and,therefore no action was taken in case it was actually present and none of us could find it). About 2 weeks ago a few eggs were laid and began development. Still no queen so we are thinking that there were laying workers. A frame of brood was donated by a friendly beek and a new queen was supplied by a member of this forum. She put this in in a introducer cage (with a fondant plug). Having returned from holiday she has rung to say that that queen has also disappeared. At the moment we are assuming that she has been destroyed by the colony who see laying workers as their own queen. At this stage in the season it looks like the colony is DOOMED.
Thanks to hivemaker for the bushfarms reference it's most helpful.

Anyway, after I gave her this nuc My queen died (I posted on this a few weeks ago). They did hatch their own queen but it wasn't till a couple of days ago I noticed new larvae have appeared so presumably she started laying last week. I hope they aren't drones too soon to say (they are in ordinary comb cells).

After all that, we were wondering whether to boost the, now, somewhat depleted numbers in my hive and thus winter survivability, whether I should have the bees back or whether these might attack my queen as has been said?
If so how to do it easiest, best and safest. ?Shake them in the grass.
Without wishing to anthropomorphise, it seems a shame to lose them after all the effort, but even more so I don't want to risk losing the lot.

Sorry to be long winded but I'm trying for best advice. Thanks.

PS I would add that the queen is large, frisky and easy to spot and since last week the bees have started to make new wax comb after a long period of indolence. From this i assume normal activity has been resumed.
 
Last edited:

Somerford 

Drone Bee
Joined
Aug 24, 2009
Messages
1,733
Reaction score
172
Location
Wiltshire, Somerset, S Glos & S Oxfordshire
Hive Type
national
The latest update is that they have chewed through the paper - there was alot on the board below the open floor this morning, and they appear to all flying well with plenty of pollen coming into the hive.

I followed Mike @ E***bee's advice - the Queen& nuc when on the bottom with the entrance reversed 180 degrees. Then a QX, existing super and finally the old Brood chamber that was staggered slightly to create an entrance the same side as the old one, just a couple of boxes higher. I also topped this off with the contact feeder i have been using .

I'll leave it a few more days before turning the old entrance back and loosing the old brood chamber.

It helps that , although windy, it is warm enough for the bees to be active and enough pollen around to encourage Her Royal Highness to keep laying !
 

kermit 

New Bee
Joined
Jul 12, 2009
Messages
79
Reaction score
0
Location
Oban, Argyll
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
3
After all that, we were wondering whether to boost the, now, somewhat depleted numbers in my hive and thus winter survivability, whether I should have the bees back or whether these might attack my queen as has been said?
If so how to do it easiest, best and safest. ?Shake them in the grass.
Without wishing to anthropomorphise, it seems a shame to lose them after all the effort, but even more so I don't want to risk losing the lot.
We had a very similar problem earlier this year. A swarm we got lost the queen and ended up with laying workers. We bit the bullet and bought a nuc. To boost numbers we decided to add the old swarm to the nuc.

I took the hive with old swarm across to far side of garden. Took out frames and shook off all the bees. Then I was surrounded by thousands of unhappy bees. They didn't seem to be going back to where the hive had been, so I went to look. The nuc was covered in bees trying to get in. Note - the nuc faced the opposite direction, so they were trying to get in the back. I watched the entrance and you could see bees coming to the entrance guard bees and being licked before entering. Bees from the nuc just flew in and out while all this was happening.

Our intentions were exactly the same as yours - why lose a good workforce if there is no need. Apparently laying workers don't fly, so can't get back to the old site.

Hope that helps

Dave
 

Latest posts

Top