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Blue Spinnaker 

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I installed my new queen on Friday, and took off the plastic covering to her cage on Sunday so the workers could eat their way through to her. I checked just now to see if she was out OK and I could see that there was still candy in the entrance and she was still inside, so I took off the lid and let her out.

She went straight away and stuffed her bum down some cells and the workers mostly seemed to be ignoring her. I took a quick photo and left them alone. I'm away for 10 days now so there's no chance of me getting in her way while she settles down.

It's been a traumatic start for a newbie with test frames not working etc, so I'm just looking for reassurance really! Might they still ball her, or would they have gone straight for her? They have been Q- for several weeks, the last possible date eggs could have been laid is the 6th July, so there are very few uncapped cells now.

Thanks
 

Midland Beek 

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Candy release is prone to failure because sometimes the candy can dry and become like cement, and the bees cannot remove it easily.
 

oliver90owner 

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Go on holiday and stop worrying. Take reasonable precautions against wasp attack (no idea how strong or weak your colony might be, and whether or not the wasps are bothering/will bother them. Certainly a reduced entrance from full hive width!

Remember you may come back to a supercedure, but there is little you can do about it (even if you were at home), so no point worrying - and she would probably continue to lay until the virgin queen were ready to take over.

So 10 days is nothing really, with no need to inerfere with her, even if you were there. You might just want someone to keep an eye on them, for jaspers becoming aggressive towards your colony. Other than that, nothing, as long as there is enough stores....

Regards, RAB
 

burren 

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Hi Midland Beek

Are there other preferred methods to candy when putting a new Q in,( in a cage/or other)?
thanks
 

Midland Beek 

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A travelled queen comes in a cage with attendants. I think it preferable to remove them all from the cage, kill the attendants (disease - no thanks) and put the queen in a Butler cage with newspaper (pierced with a few small holes) secured over the open end by a rubber band. Some use marshmallow instead of small piece of newspaper.

However, the above runs the risk of losing the queen or even squashing her in mistake for a worker! A few methods work: open up cage in bag or in vehicle.

All said, I have introduced queens in the cages they have travelled in and with workers included. But I have found myself opening and disturbing colony to check if the queen has indeed been released.
 

burren 

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thanks midland beek,
I tried requeening my hive on 16th July with lovely mated ( specially bred) apis melifera melifera (native bee here in Ireland) queen. Managed to get 6 workers out safe ( yes pooing all over the toilet lid!). Was advised to give a little spray of sugar water with a drop or two of vanilla essence. Left alone (22nd) for 7 days - on checking no sign of eggs, then checked on 27th, still no eggs, very gutted. on 27th there were a few very small play cups ( empty). Also just requeened my nuc on 27th as my previous mated q ( that i have raised in a apidea) just disappeared! Seem to be losing my way a bit at mo, might just be bad luck! Weather not been great here for weeks, send us some sun please!
 

Silly Bee 

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I'm flying onto Dublin Sunday morning, I'll bring some sunshine.:)
 

burren 

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Hivemaker. 

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Candy release is prone to failure because sometimes the candy can dry and become like cement, and the bees cannot remove it easily.
I agree it does sometimes........much better to make up a mixture that does not harden like rock....then never any problems with the slow realease.
 

burren 

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My mixture was honey( your own obviously!) and icing sugar, was told if would stay "soft" and not harden ( in q cage)
 

aseeryl 

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Same as spinnaker here. Put a caged queen into a small split this afternoon - they've been q- for about 3 weeks. The queen is being ignored. The last time I introduced a queen the natives were instantly all over it and rather aggresive. So I'm reluctant to free her. But how long will a mated queen survive in a cage without attendants? Should I remove the sugar plug and let her go in the morning perhaps?
 

Blue Spinnaker 

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Thanks for the replies - yes the candy was rock solid. The entrance is reduced and they are only a small colony, but we haven't had many wasps here ....yet....it's been too flippin' cold and wet :( . You watch - when I escape to sunnier climes next week you'll be having a heatwave here!

aseeryl - I was pleased that they didn't take too much notice of her - my concern was that they were going to be aggressive :confused:
 

aseeryl 

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To BS
Glad she's survived. I think I'll let her out tomorrw - no point in keeping her alone in a cage. I'm wondering if the bees are "depressed" ,being queenless for so long. A new boss might just cheer them up (the self raised queen was unsuccessful - gone or died).

BTW, the other half of the split has raised its own queen and she started laying last weekend (lots at uncapped larval stage so far).
 

Blue Spinnaker 

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Same happened with mine -test frame produced emergency QCs but when the inspector came he said they weren't going to develop into anything useful as they were too small.
Hope yours turns out OK, time will tell.
 

rich 

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Burren
I had a queen problem a little while back myself, I wanted to re-queen a colony, they were a little tetchy to put it mildly.
I put in one of my first queens I had raised, she spent 3 days in a Butlers cadge before I took out the wood plug and replaced it with queen candy.
Checked seven day later, queen out, but no eggs or larva to be seen, waited another seven days, still nothing. So I put in a ripe queen cell, looked three days later and they’d built comb all over the cell, she wasn't going to be allowed out. OK my thinks, you lot will just have to be united with a Q+ colony.
Three day later I was checking to make sure I hadn't a laying worker before uniting, and low and behold a full frame of eggs, all nicely sat in the bottom of the cells.

She took nearly three weeks to get going, but she's making up for lost time now, lying like a train. Lovely pattern of sealed cells this evening.

Rich
 

BobsBees 

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Rich,
Fastest time I have had for a new Virgin to get mated was 17 days, normally its 21 or even longer, and even then she does not get up to speed for another week or so.
That was last year when things re queen rearing were much better. This year EVERYTHING is very hit or miss. The extra long winter upset the Bees as well as us humans. Not to mention things not growing in the garden.
No drones this year till mid May.
The ONLY thing not affected from what I see is Varroa.
"Things can only get better"
We will see.
Cheers Bob.
 

burren 

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thanks Rich, thats all encouraging! Will check again after the weekend. Hopefully nuc will have some eggs!!! And hopefully hive will just have a slow to start mated q. showing some progress!!!
 

rich 

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Hi Bob
She was a mated queen from one of my mating nuc's laying really well, hence to move to a full colony.

I would expect a virgin to take three week to get going but a mated queen? And yes, it was the same queen; nice big white blob marking her was still there for all to see.
Sure hope things do get better for you

Rich
 

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