Honeyflow.com | FAQ's |

Queen hatching - advice please

So I’m very new to beekeeping and been given a beautiful lot of bees, on two of the brood frame they are breeding a new queen, (I’m told not necessarily a bad thing as original queen may be old (brood frames are still full packed with bees tho) I’ve been told if new queen hatches she will destroy others and old queen will leave hive with a third of the bees,
thoughts please
would set up a bait hive but have no old bee brood frames etc to entice them it would be all new hive material

1 Like

Stick up pic of what your suggesting are queen cells.

Anything in them or are they capped?

sorry not near the hive, but were told by a bee keeper they were, looked like a peanut shape to me hahaon the edge of brood frame, squashed one and had larvae in it

Hi Jen, does your colony have a queen? she might have got squashed or the bees may have balled her a few days ago during an inspection. Those queen cells could be emergency queens in the making.

the ‘peanut shell’ is totally indicative of a queen cell and I am sure that’s what you have. How many were there? Where are they? Cells on the walls of frames- and only a few- are likely emergency cells. Cells on the bottom and side edges of frames- and a lot- (6 to 12 maybe) are definitely swarm cells. If the hive is jam packed with bees- and there are multiple queen cells - then I would say without any hesitation your hive is about to swarm- literally any day now. Probably tomorrow… If you have a lot- and you don’t want to make a split- I would probably go in there and kill off most of them leaving the best two or three. Even if you do that the hive may still swarm- but it will probably only swarm once instead of two or three times.

Another option is a Taranov split if a hive about to swarm imminently. Don’t know how things are in Victoria just now- but here in adelaide bees are swarming everywhere. And i mean everywhere- I am getting 5 to 10 calls a day for swarms- every day for the last 3 weeks… Some of my hives have swarmed to despite me trying to stop them. Bees really want to swarm this spring.

It is a bit late now to do a preemptive split of your hive but something you should consider for next Spring when it is that most hives swarm Jen. Even if you don’t want a second hive. A split is a very saleable item but a second hive is also valuable to you in having good hive health. A second hive doesn’t take a lot of time to look after as you would be already suited up and your smoker going.
Normally when a hive swarms it is closer to a half of the bees swarm with the queen than a third of them.
Welcome to the forum where you will find lots of help and advice.
Cheers

thanks, i’m happy to have another hive just didn’t expect this on 1st day :thinking: hate to loose a swarm, i would set up a bait hive but prob missed the boat as it would be new materials and i’ve read they are attracted to hives with old brood etc in them

A ‘trap hive’ that has frames of comb is good but a hive with new frames with foundation will be readily used. I smear a very little amount of lemon grass extract in a new box as an attractant for the bees to stay when they come to check it out.
When a hive swarms it is capable of quickly drawing out comb and making a new home.
Don’t fear having a second hive, you will learn a lot more than twice as much and more than twice the speed. The forum can help you with advice in doing a split and any questions you have.
Cheers

thanks Peter,
just sad i may lose all my bees before i’ve begun, i’m going to get another hive and give it a go
appreciate ur advice

If the hive swarms you will still have a colony remain in the hive with a newly emerged queen.
What I would do is make up a new hive with a baseboard, brood box, wired frames with foundation fitted and a roof which is all you will need when you do a split.
A super can be bought or made after you have done a split or captured a swarm.
If you present hive is an 8 frame version then stick with that size, the same applies if it a 10 frame version. Stick with ‘standardizing’ your hives.
Cheers

ok thanks i’ll do that! i

1 Like

There are several possible reasons they raise a queen. Emergency, supersedure and swarming. Are they crowded? Is it swarm season where you are? What is the proportion of bees to queen cells? You need to figure out what the goal of the bees is so you can help them finish that goal. If they are swarming, I would split them. If they are superseding, I would leave them alone. If they are queenless I would give them a frame of brood just in case those are not viable queen cells.

http://www.bushfarms.com/beesswarmcontrol.htm#supersedure