Sneaky Switchout To Fool The Bees

Alastair

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Harvesting honey today and came across an especially vicious hive, badly wanted to requeen, but I didn't have a queen.

Then while doing the AFB check I found 3 supersedure cells. A good thing, but only issue is the resultant queen might turn out to be just as nasty as it's mother.

So, what to do? Alongside the agro hive was a nice quiet hive of golden coloured very gentle bees. I didn't have any queen making gear with me, but using a twig I removed the young larvae from the queen cells, and replaced them with larvae plucked from the gentle hive.

Hoping the bees don't notice and raise these larvae to be their new queen. Never done this before so not totally certain it will work, but as the vicious hive was black and the nice hive was yellow, I should be able to tell in a couple of months if there has been a colour change in the black hive.


2 of the 3 supersedure cells

supersedure cells.jpg


Over at the gentle hive, pared back the cell a bit, removed the larva, and placing a larva from the gentle hive

supersedure cell switch.jpg
 

Alastair

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Oh thanks for the reminder.

Bad news unfortunately, the bees tore down the queen cells. When I was checking I also found a virgin in the hive which I somehow missed on the previous look, so it's possible they tore them down once they had a viable virgin.

Anyhow I'm now keeping a proper grafting tool in the truck so if I come across another similar situation I'll give it another try. (y)
 
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Only thou
Oh thanks for the reminder.

Bad news unfortunately, the bees tore down the queen cells. When I was checking I also found a virgin in the hive which I somehow missed on the previous look, so it's possible they tore them down once they had a viable virgin.

Anyhow I'm now keeping a proper grafting tool in the truck so if I come across another similar situation I'll give it another try

I now carry plastic empty queen cells with me and graft into them on site if I need a queen and havent raised any to take. Not a 100% success but works about 90% of the time. Have no idea why I didnt think of it it years ago. only thought of it this spring. I usually do two in a hive often they grow 2 but sometimes 1. still learning. oh and if their is a virgin running around, nothing happens which makes sense.
 

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