Yesterday evening I had a moment to inspect a couple of nucs that had new queen cells when I originally split them. I’m happy to announce that both of them have good laying queens. I was able to get one of them marked, the other wouldn’t give me the opportunity. I always pull one frame on the outside and look it over trying to find the queen in case she is on it. I did find eggs on the first frame in both hives. I then clumsily set it near the hive on the ground propped up against the nearest thing that could hold it erect (i.e. an old lawn chair, the hive body, side of the garage). I then worked my way through the nucs unsuccessfully finding the queen. When I finally decided to give up and put the frame back in… there she is on the first frame I removed that was left sitting on the ground. This happened twice on both nucs. I can’t believe it! One of the girls is even on a full frame of honey, both sides! Queens aren’t supposed to do that. Sorry I didn’t get any photo’s due to the added frustration maybe next time.
This leads me in to my next question. How do you mark your queens? Do you use all of the gadgets that the supply companies sell or do you go with the “by hand” method? I’m planning a post to explain my process in the near future. I’m hoping to get a few photo’s while I mark the “queen that got away” next time I inspect them. When I started out I didn’t think queen marking was needed at all. Now my perspective has changed. I like all of my queens to be marked if possible and I make notes if they are not. I will also explain my position on this in that future post. I’d love to hear your opinions on weather or not marking queens is necessary as well.
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