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Thread: todays news

  1. #4061
    Senior Member
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    Ive been waiting for an iffy queen to start laying in one of my poly nucs for the last few weeks. Shes little bit small but I was hoping shed fill out. The bees have got rid of most of their drones and there have been no Q cells made on the bar of open brood they were given. Today was going to be her last chance for eggs or she was for the chop. Shes not laying yet!
    On arrival today there was a lot of robbing going on nearby. The owner of the other hives hasnt been feeding his bees yet and they are in robbing mode. Ive been feeding all of my nucs and they have narrowed entrances and should be able to defend themselves. On inspecting the nuc I found the bees were balling the queen. After I had separated the ball the queen took to the air and landed on the front of the nuc and re-entered. I found her on another frame and the bees were starting to ball her again. I shut the nuc and have left them to their own devices. Could the queen not yet be laying because of all the robbing going on or is she just duff anyway and it might have been her own bees balling her. Im going to sort them out once and for all next weekend. I welcome all opinions.
    Ps Ive come across queens being balled before and feared the worst, only to find them running about fine on the next inspection.
    Last edited by lindsay s; 01-09-2019 at 05:48 PM.

  2. #4062
    Senior Member Mellifera Crofter's Avatar
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    Lindsay, I've heard that the disruption to the hive sometimes cause the bees to ball the queen. I've discovered a new queen being balled when inspecting a hive, and despite saving her from the ball, she disappeared. Perhaps, shutting the nuc and returning it to normal might have been your best move, as it seems you've managed before!

  3. #4063
    Senior Member Mellifera Crofter's Avatar
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    Saturday's news: We (the ADBKA) had a another excellent afternoon on the heather with Murray - and we did not need any umbrellas!

    Despite my many attempts to capture the beauty of a comb of heather held against the sun - this was my best effort.

    Kitta

    IMG_4560-2.jpg

  4. #4064
    Senior Member fatshark's Avatar
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    Held up against the sun all bees look dark

  5. #4065
    Senior Member Mellifera Crofter's Avatar
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    I should remember that, Fatshark, when I bemoan the influx of yellow bees in my colonies!

  6. #4066
    Senior Member Adam's Avatar
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    I've seen balling a few times but not for years. It was always with young queens, so maybe I used to be too keen to go inside and see if the queens were laying or accepted. In those occasions I smoked and pulled the bees off and caged the queens with candy and the queens were OK a week later once released with me out of the way and interfering with the smooth running of the colony.
    If it's the only queen they've got, it would be unusual for the bees to do that. But if she's duff anyway..... they might have diffferent ideas.

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