Unplanned requeening

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Location
Wiveliscombe
Hive Type
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One of the members of the local BKA said this morning that she has some spare queens available now that might be ideal for requeening the stroppy colonies that I have at one site. Unfortunately the weather is rubbish and I'm completely unprepared, having no plan or kit (mostly). I'm wondering if I could potentially take frames of house bees and brood from other colonies, drop them into five frame nucs, introduce the queens and take them to a site near another beekeeper who is attempting to flood the area with drones carrying "laid back bee" genes to get mated, which would reduce the number of problems I have to solve immediately to the transporting and introduction of the queens. Once the queens are mated I'm hoping that when I have a little more time I could split the stroppy colonies, moving the house bees away from their existing site to play "hunt the queen" and get rid of her, then combine the queenless colony with one of the nucs. At the original site I could leave a single empty hive to collect the psycho flying bees as I move the others to requeen, give them a frame of eggs/brood from one of the nucs from which they can raise another queen, then move that one to my mating site so the new queen will (hopefully) produce "well-adjusted" offspring.

I've never tried this before so I'm pushing the envelope (for me) a bit. Does this sound like the beginning of a sane plan, or am I way off-beam? Assuming it's ok, what's the best way to transport the queens (less than ten miles) and then introduce them (given that I have no cages)?

James
 
The plan of making nucs to introduce virgins is sensible and you can requeen when the nucs are established at the end of the summer. By then the workforce in your hives will have decreased.

What I don't get is how you plan to introduce the queens in the nucs if you don't have any cages? Do you know anyone who has, ask the club? I wouldn't run a virgin into a nuc which has just been made.
 
What I don't get is how you plan to introduce the queens in the nucs if you don't have any cages?

That's the bit of the plan I don't have either :D I've been searching for examples of DIY cages. I feel sure I could bodge one if required.

James
 
That's the bit of the plan I don't have either :D I've been searching for examples of DIY cages. I feel sure I could bodge one if required.

James
The butler type cage is the easiest to make if you have a bit of mesh.
 

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I used to run virgins into mini nucs when I had them emerge in an incubator without any difficulty. You knew they’d been accepted when colony went quiet.
I made 3 apideas last summer and put the virgins at the same time as the cup full of bees and all 3 got killed! Still puzzled about it.
 
I made 3 apideas last summer and put the virgins at the same time as the cup full of bees and all 3 got killed! Still puzzled about it.
I think waiting a while might have been better perhaps?
 
I think waiting a while might have been better perhaps?
Looking at the outcome any other option would have been better 😂. I watched a few videos of large scale breeders and they were doing the same, bees and virgin in at the same time. Perhaps they accept % loss with this method as it's time saving?
 
Looking at the outcome any other option would have been better 😂. I watched a few videos of large scale breeders and they were doing the same, bees and virgin in at the same time. Perhaps they accept % loss with this method as it's time saving?
I’m thinking back a bit when I used to use those little things, and think the method is to put the queenless cupful of bees in the little poly mating boxes with some sugar syrup and then put them in the garage for a day or two before giving them a queen or a queen cell?
 
Queenless yes but how long have they got to be queenless for? Would it work on a nuc just made up?
Long enough to allow any older bees to fly back home. My mating nucs are made up and set aside for a few minutes while restoring the original hive and then the virgins are run in.
A virgin I gave to my friend was run into a nuc that had contained a grumpy queen after splitting his hive. After pinching her and returning a week later to break down emergency cells, she was run in and made straight for a cell of nectar and was readily accepted.
 
Long enough to allow any older bees to fly back home. My mating nucs are made up and set aside for a few minutes while restoring the original hive and then the virgins are run in.
A virgin I gave to my friend was run into a nuc that had contained a grumpy queen after splitting his hive. After pinching her and returning a week later to break down emergency cells, she was run in and made straight for a cell of nectar and was readily accepted.
Yes, I requeen hives that way as well, works well with bigger hives so long as they are hopelessly queenless.
 
I added a sealed queen cell to a q- colony last week after they failed twice to raise a queen themselves following an AS. They were noisy and defensive then, completely different today. Steady and quiet. It’s the first time I’ve moved queen cells between colonies and also experienced such a change in temperament so quickly.
 
I dump my virgin in a mating nuc and then damp workers on top. Never lost qs that way.
BUT
I take all my workers from supers above A QE , dump them in a plastic (Shiny sided so crawling up impossible) box and let the flying bees fly away, then spray with water. No drones ,no Q ,minimum hassle
 
My mating nucs are made up and set aside for a few minutes while restoring the original hive and then the virgins are run in.
I'm about to restock some mini nucs. The virgins emerged in the incubator this morning. Anything I should know about 'running' virgin queens into a mini nuc? The mated queens have just been removed.
 
I'm about to restock some mini nucs. The virgins emerged in the incubator this morning. Anything I should know about 'running' virgin queens into a mini nuc? The mated queens have just been removed.
Dunk virgin in honey.Place in mini nuc. Bees will welcome her by eating the honey
 

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