Monday, August 11, 2014

Queen Caging Success!

Yesterday was my queen-caging demonstration and it went very well. With the help of Jill and Carl Addington and Pat and Tom Lyngholm we caged one queen in a top bar hive and five queens in Langstroth hives. One of the Langstroth queens was unmarked because she appeared during a hive check about a month ago in the same hive as the original, marked queen. I separated the two queens with a queen excluder and made sure they each had plenty of space to lay eggs. It worked! Both queens were laying full frames of brood in the same hive separated by a queen excluder. The worker bees were working for both queens. I will wait 21 days until I harvest the last of our honey so that all the bees will have hatched out. This way, I won't have eggs and larva in my honey. If you aren't planning on wintering over your honeybees, I wouldn't wait any longer to cage my queens. The reason we keep them alive is so the workers won't try as hard to make another queen because the pheromones from their queen are still alive and well.

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