Queen clipping

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jimbeekeeper 

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Any tips on queen clipping? Pros/ Cons of clipping or not.

I have never picked up a queen with my fingers I always use the bull dog clip thing / the tube with the mesh to mark her.

I have heard about practising on drones.
 

Bcrazy 

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Hi Jim,
Wow! This is a really contentious question, as to clip or not to clip.
I have heard arguments forcefully put for the pros and cons of clipping.
I feel this is a question only the individual can answer as the beek is the one who will or will not clip.

Some say because you cut the wing you are maiming the queen. Does she feel any pain? I don't know.
A clipped queen will not prevent swarming but it will prevent losing a prime swarm. Clipping is used in conjunction with a "ten day inspection system".
If a beekeeper has strong ethical or moral reasons not to clip then that's their decision. I will always clip my queens and I remove about one third of the wing, I do not clip the other wing as if I need to pick her up again then I use the wings.
Is there any detrimental damage to the queen?
Not as far as I can tell because she will lay just as proficiently as a queen that has not been clipped.

Regards;

The photo is not mine, can't remember how I came about it.
 

Frisbee 

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I have heard about practising on drones.
Ha ha - when I had my first hive, I couldn't find the queen . . . so I got my mentor to come in and do it for me, he quickly (of course) found and marked her, then he marked a drone, and for the rest of that season that damned drone kept marching across any frame I was inspecting, it would move frames as I was going along :biggrinjester:. So practise on a drone by all means . . . but then kill it.

Frisbee
 

Finman 

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Hi Jim,

Some say because you cut the wing you are maiming the queen. Does she feel any pain? I don't know.
it.

It has been recommended in new papers that don't clip too deep because wings has nerves. Just a tip away.

I clip. I have no moral in this issue. I have never clipped a leg or antenna - or drone.
 

Polyanwood 

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Probably you are really good at queen clipping Finman. I am nervous about taking off a glove near any of my hives and also would be worried that I would inadvertently maim the queen. How did you learn without practice on drones?
 
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Finman 

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How did you learn without practice on drones?

My menthor teached 40 years ago.
Take first both wings between fingers.
Then put it gently to lefth hand ; put its left legs under thumb and forefinger that it cannot twist legs.

If position is bad, I loose the queen and start from beginning
 

admin 

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Probably you are really good at queen clipping Finman. I am nervous about taking off a glove near any of my hives and also would be worried that I would inadvertently maim the queen. How did you learn without practice on drones?
I put my Queen into a plunger cage and then go to the car,settle in my seat remove my gloves and veil and then take the Queen out for clipping and marking.

I tend to take a sip of drink and a few deep breaths before removing the Queen and keep nice and calm when clipping.

I try and pay repect to the lady.

I am sure with more experience I will end up clipping at the hive,but for now it seems the best way,It takes time but I get 100% results.
 

raysa 

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Take first both wings between fingers.
I've never felt comfortable to grip the wings. I am sure the wing joints are strong but pulling them back as a handle seems a bit rough.
My method is to close my first finger and thumb gently on to the queen's thorax with her head facing into my palm, then lift her off the comb and slide my second finger under her.
The top of her thorax is exposed for marking, her abdomen is curled round my second finger, and the wings slightly raised so it's easy to slip the scissors round the tip of the right wing without risking catching a leg.
Works for me.

Ray
 

Hivemaker. 

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I keep all my queens clipped, as an essential part of swarm control.no future in all your bee's flying off into the blue yonder.would sooner just lose the queens.
 
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Blossom 

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I use to clip my queens - a diagonal cut taking off about one third of one wing and sometimes the very tip of the other. Queens don't take kindly to being chased with a pair of scissors. Some years ago a professional beekeeper told me that you can make the queen quiet by putting her in the fridge for 20 minutes! I have never tried doing this
 

Poly Hive 

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Handling by the thorax is not the best of plans as there is a risk of crushing her.

Follow her with your fingers and as she begins to get a little nervous she will lift her wings. Hold the left wing if left handed and then wait.

Why wait? She will twist around and no she will not twist of her wing so be patient.

With scissors poised over the wing again pause as often she will bring up a leg and you do not want to clip off that as well.

Having clipped then please use the chance to mark.

Practise on Drones by all means, but as already mentioned, clip, mark and then kill so save considerable confusion.
 

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