killed queen accidently - got new frame with eggs- lots of queen cells - what next

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robin 

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I had a lovely queen doing a fantastic job, I found her , marked her, and 2 days later discover a load of queen cells, so I create a nuc, remove all queen cells in my main (only) hive and leave for 4 days

4 days later, check nuc - no eggs but queen cell coming on nicely with a couple in reserve
Main hive awash with queen cells and no eggs, all these cells will be using 'older' egg/larvae, so I secured a frame of eggs from a local beekeeper to me and put that in, check in 4 days, lots of queen cells- so I now have hopefully a 'strong' queen, reared from egg, rather than3 day old egg or older larvae

I have lots of queen cells, is there any risk of swarm?? should I reduce the number of queen cells?

cheers guys/girls
 

garethbryson 

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yes reduce or you might get a load of casts. I'd just leave the best looking one. I know some people say to leave 2 but i've seen those swarm too in our association apairy..
 

admin 

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I know some people say to leave 2 but i've seen those swarm too.
Happened to me 2 weeks ago.
I manged to get the swarm into a nuc box and the queen has started laying.
 

oliver90owner 

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For the new beeks reading this:

I wonder why a frame of eggs and brood will give a better queen and why they don't build on the older larvae on this frame?

Old eggs? Does it really matter how old the eggs are! All eggs will be three days old before they hatch - won't they?

The new queen will not be a daughter of the original 'lovely queen' that was doing a fantastic job. Another possible down-side.

No, I see no advantage of using a frame of eggs from a third party unless for good reason.

Pleas will someone enlighten me if I am wrong.

RAB
 

Midland Beek 

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Main hive awash with queen cells and no eggs, all these cells will be using 'older' egg/larvae, so I secured a frame of eggs from a local beekeeper to me and put that in, check in 4 days, lots of queen cells- so I now have hopefully a 'strong' queen, reared from egg, rather than3 day old egg or older larvae
You miss the point. All larvae - queen and worker - are fed with the same food for the first three days, on the fourth day worker larvae get weaned onto honey. No point in getting that frame from your friend, becaiuse your bees had the means to create new queens already.

Two options: maybe leave them with two good emergency queen cells, or destroy them all to make them hopelessly queenless and introduce new queen.
 

susbees 

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I had a lovely queen doing a fantastic job, I found her , marked her, and 2 days later discover a load of queen cells, so I create a nuc, remove all queen cells in my main (only) hive and leave for 4 days
So the QCs from the fantastic queen were all destroyed. Well that wasn't so good :(.
 

robin 

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Thanks you for the response garethbryson

guys

I personally do not feel that I have missed the point, if bees make an emergency queen then they use larvae that could be older than 3 / 4 days hatched,, which can reduce the quality of the queens laying ability

yes all bees are 'layed' the same except queen cells will be 'fed' substantially more 'royal jelly' than an larvae that is groomed to be a worker

getting a frame of 'newly' laid eggs from a good quality known queen means that I am 'more' likely to get a good queen from the eggs.

the issue at this point is that when the first set of queen cells was seen it was assumed that the hive was preparing to swarm, not that I had accidently killed the queen ( and here is the important part ) 3 days earlier

so when I checked 4 days after that (7 days now from when I believe I killed my queen) to look for eggs to see where my queen was - nuc or hive - and there was a distinct lack of eggs and a load of emergency queen cells in the main hive, I was faced with 3 options,

1 rejoin the nuc and the hive ( leaving myself a single hive and an unknown quality queen - i.e the age of the larvae when made into an emergency queen cell)

2 leave the hive to fend for itself and hope a 'reasonable' queen is created,

3 get a fresh batch of eggs from a beek 200 yards away

as I only had a single hive I figured that I would see if the emergency queen in the nuc was any good ( i.e laying pattern temperment etc) and make a second hive from that

this method gives me two hives, one I hope with a known good queen, and one hopefully the daughter from the original

I hope that clears up my thought process

so next year I am hoping to have 2 hives to start the season with both with new queens

but my next task will be to go through and remove the queen cells that are short and stumpy as a first past and then leave 2 of the larger queen cells to hopefully garuntee that I will get a queen

worst case scenario - i can always rejoin the hives together again, but I really would like to successfully create 2 hives,

in future I think I will prob just get another queen though - much faster method of getting back on track
 

steve1958 

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Excellant experience though.
And
If it works it will be another achievement for you.

There is nothing stopping you replacing the queens at a later date if the new ones are not too good.
However from what I have found in the short time I have been keeping Bees
They usualy manage to work things for the best bee-smilliebee-smillie
 

Repwoc 

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not that I had accidently killed the queen ( and here is the important part ) 3 days earlier
Assuming the old queen was laying up to the time of despatch, there may still have been eggs and there certainly would have been larvae < 1 day old. So the next batch of emergency QCs would probably have been OK.
 

robin 

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that is true, but what with it being my first hive, I really wanted to have the best possible out come, hopefully this way I will get two (fingers crossed) strong colonies out of it

am hoping for a warm day tomorrow so that I can clear out most of the 'unwanted' queen cells

rather than kill them off is it possible to 'cut' them out and hatch them in a controlled environment or do you need nurse bees from the very first moment a queen cell hatches

cheers for the replys

Robin
 
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Tom Bick 

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Yes I understand it is possible to remove sealed queen cells to a controlled environment but this I fear is beyond my limited experience of three years and I expect yours.

One thing you can do is you can do is providing you have the bees and frames is move one frame with a good queen cell on it with one other frame to a nucleus hive as a sort of insurance for the one good cell ideally open cell so you know it has a grub and royal jelly in it in the original hive.
 

Repwoc 

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rather than kill them off is it possible to 'cut' them out and hatch them in a controlled environment
Not much to lose really - you could try cutting them out, put them in jam jars with holes in the lids and keep in a warm place - say the airing cupboard. I would wait until almost ready to emerge though - they are quite delicate until ripe - say seven days after sealing. Ideally they need some workers + food too.
 

robin 

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cheers guys

Instead of killing off I will remove and try hatching in a controlled environment - nothing tried nothing gained

cheers guys
 

Erichalfbee 

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Errr what would you do with all those queens hatched in jam jars?
Sorry not trying to be funny, just curious.
 

robin 

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no problem for asking

I was intending on keeping a couple - for the experiment so would not be 'all those'

and then I am not sure maybe talk to some local beeks and see if I can get a frame or so from a couple to build up a 3rd hive from a 'spare' queen

maybe see if anyone in my club is in need
 

kazmcc 

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Where in the UK are you from Robin?
 

robin 

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have updated my details to be more informative

I am in somerset, near the city of Wells
 

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