queens about to hatch

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New Bee
Jun 21, 2009
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In the nuc, started 2 weeks ago, i put 1 frame of brood with QCs. Just had a look today as they are due to pop. there are a number of these, 2 being obvious larger than the others. I've seen the description "scrub queen" used on the forum, which i take to mean small or undersized queen cells and some would, to my relatively untutored eye, seem to fit that description (could be large drone cells - but there are drone cells and they are obviously not as big).

Question is, given that the first one out destroys later hatchlings, should I destroy these smaller cells so that the larger progeny has a better chance of survival?

BTW I got the impression that the wall of one of the larger ones is thinning with a vague shape visible inside, maybe imminent hatch.

I think it would have to be done in the morning if recommended.

I don't have enough bees to carve out a cell and make another "mating size" nuc.
I would knock off the smaller ones and leave the biggest best two.

When they are ripe to hatch they look like a lit cigarette as the tip turns orange/red.
As per above advice, it is just as well to destroy any obviously weedy queen cells. A swarm from your recently established nuc is pretty unlikely, because ... it's a recently established nuc.

And sometimes, I think, long thin queen cells can give poor quality queens.
OK. Thanks I'll do that.

It just seems a pity, though, to lose potentially free colonies.
Ah but... You are saying you have between two and four colonies and so I imagine you have the kit for them. Can you cope with ANOTHER four sets of roofs and floors, brood boxes and excluders and the 12 supers they will at the least need?

Not so free really?

BTW I got the impression that the wall of one of the larger ones is thinning with a vague shape visible inside, maybe imminent hatch.QUOTE]

Could well be me reading this incorrectly, but do you mean the tip of the cell is being thinned ? or the side wall ?

Tip - Great, sidewall- not Great.
When I said "between 2-4 colonies" I mean that a retiring beek gave me enough parts for Wbcs to make make 4-5 big hives. After total spring loss I'm keen to maximise numbers rather than honey. So I've got 2 brewing up at the moment. The reason for thinking about moving QCs (and make another mini nuc) is to have a reserve in case of failure but this might weaken them too much.

The cells are still intact this am. There does seem to be thinning of the tips, looking a bit chewed. Got rid of the small ones and left two large.

I'm away for a week now so hopefully a result next week!

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