Welcome, Guest

Author Topic: Holding Queens in an Incubator  (Read 300 times)

Offline SawBee

  • New Bee
  • *
  • Posts: 43
  • Gender: Male
Holding Queens in an Incubator
« on: May 06, 2017, 10:23:44 am »
After queens hatch in an incubator, what care do they need?  Should they be given food or water on the outside of their cages?  How long can they be left in the incubator before being placed in a nuc?

Offline Michael Bush

  • Universal Bee
  • *******
  • Posts: 16445
  • Gender: Male
    • bushfarms.com
Re: Holding Queens in an Incubator
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2017, 11:37:16 pm »
When they emerge they are famished.  If no food is provided they will go back in the cell and eat the royal jelly there and likely stay there and die.  I put some crystallized honey in the hair curler cages for the queens to eat.  Better yet, don't let them emerge in the incubator.  Put them in a mating nuc before they emerge so bees can feed them.
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm en espanol: bushfarms.com/es_bees.htm  auf deutsche: bushfarms.com/de_bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
"Everything works if you let it."--James "Big Boy" Medlin

Offline capt44

  • Field Bee
  • ***
  • Posts: 718
  • Gender: Male
    • RV BEES
Re: Holding Queens in an Incubator
« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2017, 12:22:35 pm »
It is best to put the queen cells in a mating nuc a day before they are due to emerge.
But you can let them emerge in an incubator.
I use a cabnet style incubator that I can hang frames of cells in. (like a hive)
I use the Nicot system for the parts.
I use a hair roller cage that goes over the cell cup holder.
I place a couple of drops of water inside the lid. (small notches inside the cap)
When the queen emerges she will go down looking for food and water.
I then tear the cell off the cup and place what I call queen candy inside the cup.
The queen will then go back to where the cell use to be and find the queen candy and curl up on it feeding.
The queen candy is powdered sugar and a little honey mixed until if makes an almost dry ball.
Just pinch off a small amount and push it into the plastic cell cup.
I keep the temperature at 93 degrees F and 72% humidity constantly plus or minus 1 degree temp and plus or minus 1% humidity.
It is not good for the queens but I have kept them 2 weeks in the incubator.
I like to get them in a mating nuc as soon as possible.
Richard Vardaman (capt44)