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  • Writer's pictureMGeslock

Raising Local Queens

What I have learned through this adventure that a productive queen is probably the most important factor in a successful hive.

Queen can be purchased and mailed to your house. There is one school of thought that Queens that are shipped in may be better suited to the region that they are from and not so much the area that you are in.

If available, they can be purchased locally. The key word is if available.

Raising queens is a process and bees adhere to a process. They have a time table. No matter what you do, that time table can not be altered.

The process in a nut shell is:

  • Find the correct aged larvae

  • Graft (scoop it out) it to a cup

  • Make a queen-less hive

  • Let the bees think that this is there only chance to make a queen

  • When the cells are being drawn out, put in a strong hive and them care for them

  • When capped protect each cell (a single queen will destroy competitive cells)

  • Remove the cells to mating boxes

  • Once mated, the new queens can be used to start new colonies or replace queens.

By no means it this a how to do list but a general overview on how to do it. I have tried a few times with varied results.

Here is the cups that I have grafted. The frame is upside down. I will turn it right side up when I place in the hive.

Each one has the potential (noticed I said potential) to have one queen. The process is delicate. You cant bump, shake or jostle it when moving the frame.

In 24 hours, I will know if the graft has been accepted. The bees will start to draw out the cups in long peanut shapes.

I will keep you posted.

I just pulled 32 pounds of wild flower honey. This honey is darker than the spring clover honey. If you are looking for some, just shoot me an email. Remember Thanksgiving is just around the corner. Your table will need local honey on it for your fresh buttermilk biscuits, You are making homemade buttermilk biscuits right......?

Directly from Betty Crocker 1950's cookbook. Good enough then, good enough now.

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Jul 31, 2020

absolutely amazing big guy!

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