Anyone Seen White Queens

I’m new here not sure if I’m posting this where I should be.
I grafted queens from an Italian and they hatched yesterday, there was a variety of colours, but some were white or more pale and some where white and black almost like the cordovan queens except white where the yellow/orange would normally be. Any idea what this could be? My guess is malnutrition but there is still royal jelly in the cups. After they hatched.

Never heard of that. White eyes, yes, but totally white, no. I suggest you ask your local university insect specialists (Entomology Department). If they haven’t heard of it, they may love a couple of specimens to study and give you an answer. :blush:

The head/eyes were normal colour, just on the back/butt it was very pale. Checked on them today though (about 24 hours later) and they were normal Italian looking.

Often happens when insects first emerge. They are pale then darken as their cuticle hardens.



I agree with what Rob (@Rmcpb) said. The other thing is that newly emerged bees (not hatched - eggs hatch, bees emerge from capped cells :blush: ) all tend to be very fluffy with pale yellow hairs. These rub off very quickly, making the bee look darker. If you ever watch a nurse bee emerging from her cell on a nice sunny day, you will see what I mean. :wink:

Yes I’ve seen that, but she had no hair there at the time. Makes sense what he said though.

are you sure about hair?

If you are questioning hair as in keratin, I didn’t mean keratin. But bees are very “hairy” with chitin. Moreover, the hairs are usually very pale or yellow in color, not black, so very young bees look a lot lighter than older bees. Take a peak at this photo to see what I mean:


Thank you so much for that link. It was very interesting! My parents were bee keepers, I really have no idea of this. Sorry if my doubt was too silly

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When you are new to bees and beekeeping, it would be silly not to ask questions. Keep asking and learning, your questions are welcome. :wink: