Queen rearing question

I grafted into 20 queen cups yesterday and placed them into a strong, hopelessly queen-less hive.

My question is this: I’ve read where folks take them out of the queenless hive after a couple days and move them to a queen-rite finishing hive.

What is the purpose of moving them? Why not just leave them in the cell starter until 2 days before they emerge and then move them to mating nucs?


The little I have read uses the cloake board method. Once the queen cells have been accepted you can remove the slider out of the cloake board. The eggs that the queen has laid in the bottom brood box will not hatch for a few days so the nurse bees will have the queen cells capped by that point. This method uses the same hive. You create the queen less/queen right state by either inserting the hive.

I believe the idea behind the queen right hive to finish has to do with resources brought in by foragers. The cell starters could run low on resources and have to send bees out to forage. This would reduce the # of nurse bees to take care of queen cells.

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You have more high quality nurse bees in a queenright colony and using one means you can do three or so rounds of QCs

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The only reason to move them to a queenright finisher is so you don’t impact the colony by being queenless so long. For one batch of queens, I wouldn’t bother. Just leave them for 10 days after you graft and then put them in mating nucs. You can even break up the starter into the mating nucs.

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Ok, thank you.
I looked in on them yesterday (24 hours after grafting) and I feel encouraged about half of them. Next round I’m going to really pack the hive with nurse bees, in fact, if I do another round, all the frames of capped brood in the cell starter will have emerged and it will be really crowded.