I am now a Beekeeper!!

I am now a Beekeeper!!

Author
Discussion

Bill

45,435 posts

222 months

Saturday 24th April
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thumbup That's plan B!

Mr Happy

5,389 posts

187 months

Saturday 24th April
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Bill said:
thumbup That's plan B!
Plan Bee, surely... (sorry!)

Bill

45,435 posts

222 months

Saturday 24th April
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fk! Why did I miss that opportunity?? rofl

dickymint

Original Poster:

19,624 posts

225 months

Monday 3rd May
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Another manic week or so and not a good time to be laid up with Sciatica. Started off with this..........



Then escalated to this............



Then I got lucky for a change.........

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ttd5FCN3ELs

So all i had to do is get them re-housed ..........



Never a dull moment with Bees hehe


Mr Pointy

8,441 posts

126 months

Monday 3rd May
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Great fun.

from the numbers of bees on your suit I'm guessing that you couldn't go in unprotected like JPthebeeman & just manhandle them into the box & not get severely stung?

dickymint

Original Poster:

19,624 posts

225 months

Monday 3rd May
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Mr Pointy said:
Great fun.

from the numbers of bees on your suit I'm guessing that you couldn't go in unprotected like JPthebeeman & just manhandle them into the box & not get severely stung?
I was suited and booted for a hive inspection at the time but that swarm put a stop to that. Even though swarms are usually fairly docile that was 30,000 bees protecting their Queen and one sting could start a frenzy. That beeman guy is totally nuts.

scrw.

2,298 posts

157 months

Sunday 13th June
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Whats happening here then? My bumble bees look to be shifting what looks like eggs from their (wooden) hive off somewhere else, they are really struggling to fly while carrying them, a Chinook they ain't!

2021-06-13_06-16-14 by Old_Chad, on Flickr

2021-06-13_06-16-36 by Old_Chad, on Flickr

Bill

45,435 posts

222 months

Tuesday 22nd June
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So, the new swarm we have is a bit small and has a weak queen. Very few eggs and the workers are desperately making new queens. Under guidance from the local bee chap we (well, he...) destroyed all but two of the queen cells as a back up and will get a new queen to introduce on Saturday. Fascinating stuff, insect Game of Thrones. smile


Jambo85

2,382 posts

55 months

Tuesday 22nd June
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That’s a grim looking frame - is there any capped worker brood at all?

This is the risk of starting with a swarm unfortunately - no idea what you’re getting. I had a bit of fun yesterday scooping a cast swarm off a car, odd..!

Bill

45,435 posts

222 months

Tuesday 22nd June
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No, very few other eggs.

dickymint

Original Poster:

19,624 posts

225 months

Tuesday 22nd June
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Have you got a higher resolution of that photo? as that bee on your glove looks like a Queen!

dickymint

Original Poster:

19,624 posts

225 months

Tuesday 22nd June
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Bill said:
No, very few other eggs.
If you got eggs you got a chance. Those could be emergency queen cells as opposed to supercedure queen cells. Either way if that frame is indicative of the number of bees in the colony then there is way to much space in the hive for them to maintain brood temperature.

Jambo85

2,382 posts

55 months

Wednesday 23rd June
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I’d be tempted to ask your bee chap if he could supply you with two frames of capped brood and the bees that are on them and a frame of stores when you get your queen, and get a decent nucleus started.

Bill

45,435 posts

222 months

Wednesday 23rd June
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dickymint said:
Have you got a higher resolution of that photo? as that bee on your glove looks like a Queen!
Ha! The bugger!! Annoyingly that's a depth of field focus issue rather than resolution.

Bill

45,435 posts

222 months

Wednesday 23rd June
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dickymint said:
If you got eggs you got a chance. Those could be emergency queen cells as opposed to supercedure queen cells. Either way if that frame is indicative of the number of bees in the colony then there is way to much space in the hive for them to maintain brood temperature.
We're thinking emergency queen cells, and had moved a load off to see the cells.

Bill

45,435 posts

222 months

Wednesday 23rd June
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Jambo85 said:
I’d be tempted to ask your bee chap if he could supply you with two frames of capped brood and the bees that are on them and a frame of stores when you get your queen, and get a decent nucleus started.
Thanks. I'm just an interested observer rather than having any knowledge so forgive the stupid question, but won't the new bees see off the current ones?

Jambo85

2,382 posts

55 months

Wednesday 23rd June
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Bill said:
Thanks. I'm just an interested observer rather than having any knowledge so forgive the stupid question, but won't the new bees see off the current ones?
No apology needed I’m only in my fifth season myself! They probably would fight yes. In my view those bees are doomed and would be best shaken out, some of them would successfully join the new nuc, some wouldn’t.

It’s hard to judge from one distant photo but I don’t think your queen is fertile - if she’s there and you’ve seen her then I reckon she’s a drone layer. If you haven’t seen her then you might even have laying workers starting. Were there multiple eggs per cell? Either way I think those queen cells will have male larvae in them.

As I say best guess based on one distant photo!

ETA you could of course just get a frame or two of sealed brood without bees on them, and a queen, could be a good middle option. My worry would be that if your photo shows the majority of the current colony then there’s barely enough bees to keep the frame of brood warm.

Bill

45,435 posts

222 months

Wednesday 23rd June
quotequote all
Ah, we did see a smallish drone, is that what you mean by drone layer?

There are 4 busy frames of bees, one of which has some more queen cells on and a couple of the ones we destroyed had quite well developed grubs on.

We've also started feeding them again.

dickymint

Original Poster:

19,624 posts

225 months

Wednesday 23rd June
quotequote all
Bill said:
Ah, we did see a smallish drone, is that what you mean by drone layer?

There are 4 busy frames of bees, one of which has some more queen cells on and a couple of the ones we destroyed had quite well developed grubs on.

We've also started feeding them again.
A Queen (not mated properly) can be a drone layer. But usually if a colony becomes Queenless then after around 30 days (I think) a worker bee/s will start laying eggs. These eggs can only be drones (male).

Now that’s a problem because the colony will treat her as their Queen. By introducing a new Queen most of the time she will be rejected/killed. Most beekeepers will then shake all the bees out away from the apiary and start from fresh - as Jambo has said some of the foragers may return to the ‘new hive’ but hopefully not the drone layer.

I’m actually having to deal with this on what was my best hive that has decided to swarm itself into oblivion!!

dickymint

Original Poster:

19,624 posts

225 months

Wednesday 23rd June
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Carrying on from above here’s the vid I took last week of my Queenless drone laying hive

https://youtu.be/jZdItggVzcY

Edited by dickymint on Wednesday 23 June 10:21