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Thread: JzBz queen cups

  1. #11

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    Considering the price a breeder can get for a queen the cost of the cups is insignificant. Not worth the time and trouble cleaning them out for reuse. How penny pinching can you get?

  2. #12
    Senior Member
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    Mar 2012
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    West Wales, Gorllewin Cymru
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    Quote Originally Posted by masterbk View Post
    Considering the price a breeder can get for a queen the cost of the cups is insignificant. Not worth the time and trouble cleaning them out for reuse. How penny pinching can you get?
    Ach I'm not a Scot but I'm from Cardiganshire, how long is a piece of string?
    Another point is how many little bits of plastic do you want to send to landfill?

  3. #13

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    This is an interesting one.

    On one hand we have a full crate, about 100,000, Nicot brown plastic cell cups at a cost of under 1p each...well under. we have Jolanta or her assistant, on a reasonable rate of pay, scraping off some wax and old royal jelly from used cups. Cost? Maybe say 15p per cup to reuse them? No economic argument whatsoever. Reusing the cups increases material cost per cell by about 2000%.

    However.........

    The Miksa's live in queen cells raising heaven. They would draw them on cardboard.
    Most of us live in places where it is far more marginal and every little assistance on the 'take rate' is welcome.
    The reused cells average about a 90% take rate (not too clean btw! boil them and they are back to like new, just a hand scrape of the interior suffices). New cells average significantly less than that. Probably if one is being honest and not discounting the poor sets we all get if conditions are not right, something like 70%.

    It only takes ONE extra happy ending from a cell bar (meaning a mated laying queen) and the cleaning of the cells is worthwhile, and actually the improvement averages 3 or 4 per cell bar of nice fat cells.
    But lets say just the one.................the cleaning has cost about 4.20 if all cells were cruddy....but most are not bad at all as the mini nucs tend to clean out the royal jelly for you and all you need to do is slice off the cell walls back to the cup with a sharp knife.

    So, simply on cost of cups its a non starter, but in the overall game its completely the other way round, and despite MY initial negativity to scavenging (as she was taught to do elsewhere, albeit on success rate, not cost saving) its actually better in the long run.

    Just leave them very much as the bees worked them, not overly clean as humans might think better.

    BUT.....if the cell has not hatched and the pupa has died in the cell then bin them and do NOT reuse. It MIGHT be a virus. Also...though have seen it only in infected hives, never in the breeding unit that is run strictly apart, a dead queen cell CAN be EFB. Just another cause to be wary of the ones that never hatch.
    Last edited by Calluna4u; 03-04-2017 at 08:10 AM.

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