Jul 28, 2012

Capped Queen Cells

My last inspection revealed a plethora of sealed queen cups. I am no longer worried at all about getting a new queen. This queen will mate with local drones that are probably better adapted to the local area. This will in-turn make for healthier bees. There won't be any initial shipment stress to go through either. 

The placement for most of the queen cups are on the sides of the comb. From what I've read this usually means they are swarm cells. There is some disagreement among beekeepers if the placement of queen cells means anything at all. For an excellent article from Bee Culture about the subject go here: Swarm or Supercedure? The population in my hive has been steadily decreasing. Therefore, I'm pretty sure they didn't swarm as I have been keeping an eye on them. I very rarely open up my hive, as I have the convenience of just peeping at it from underneath. That way there is much less disturbance since I don't have to take frames out and inspect them. Perhaps the bees snuck out while I wasn't looking, but if they did swarm, the old queen would've went with them - which doesn't look to be the case. With my new queen I'll make sure to mark her when I find her.

Can you find the emergency/supercedure queen cup?