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Author Topic: Is this a Virgin Queen?  (Read 188 times)

Offline CoolBees

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Is this a Virgin Queen?
« on: May 22, 2020, 08:41:34 pm »
I'm confused.

I made 6 splits on 4-19. Checked them today.

2 were beautifully Queenright with about 3 frames of capped brood.

4 had no queen, but one of these was quiet and had polished cells. The other 3 started "roaring" when I puffed smoke in.

I dumped out the queenless bees and took the stores to other hives for a boost. As I was cleaning up equipment, I spotted her ...




She looks just like her mother, except with a much smaller abdomen. She could fly. And - she had the arrogance/confidence of a queen.

Is it a Virgin? ... if so, How? ...

It's been exactly 33 days since I slipped the Cloake Board in place (4-19). 25 days since I moved a frame with capped QC's to each of the 6 splits (4-27). Her wings looked great!. .... so why would she not be mated?

We've had 80 deg average days, 55 nights, sunny with minimal breeze. ... she doesn't look like she's been bred.

The only thing I could think to do was put a box back together with stores ... she promptly marched right in ... and wait another 3 weeks ...

Any thoughts?

Sorry about the pic quality - they are individual frames out of a video I took.
You cannot permanently help men by doing for them, what they could and should do for themselves - Abraham Lincoln

Offline AR Beekeeper

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Re: Is this a Virgin Queen?
« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2020, 08:51:42 pm »
Yes, she is a queen.  If one of the splits was drying cells they were expecting a virgin to finish mating and start laying.

Offline Nock

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Re: Is this a Virgin Queen?
« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2020, 08:52:32 pm »
Would it  be possible the superseded the first Queen. Timeline would have to be very tight. Like her returning from mating flight in a day or so. How long do they leave signs of old QCs after queens emerge? 

Offline Oldbeavo

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Re: Is this a Virgin Queen?
« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2020, 12:18:46 am »
Queen in picture 1 is mated but probably not laying yet, so her abdomen hasn't extended fully.

Offline CoolBees

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Re: Is this a Virgin Queen?
« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2020, 01:27:50 am »
Thanks folks. Don't think I've ever seen an "undeveloped" queen before.

Nock - the timeline would have been tight for a 2nd level supercedure. Assuming they chose a 1 day old larva to make the QC from on the 1st round, the egg would have been layed on April 15th. ... 2nd round would have to be around the 5th of May ... so it is possible. ... and also the only logical explanation. Except if a swarm with a virgin queen took over the hive last week. I can't think of any other possibilities.

Oldbeavo - thanks for the input. You say she's mated. I wish I had your knowledge - maybe in due time.  :grin: ... all I know is she has a severely short abdomen (currently), and isn't laying yet. She had the "attitude" of a Queen - for sure. I'll check her again in 3 weeks.
You cannot permanently help men by doing for them, what they could and should do for themselves - Abraham Lincoln

Online Ben Framed

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Re: Is this a Virgin Queen?
« Reply #5 on: May 23, 2020, 02:30:54 am »
Alan, I just started a new topic about a short abdomen queen that I found a few days ago. Kind of sort of in the neighborhood of your situation?

Offline Oldbeavo

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Re: Is this a Virgin Queen?
« Reply #6 on: May 23, 2020, 08:32:06 am »
We bought some queen that appeared to have short abdomens, we called them "chunky Punky's. they were short but still wide. They seemed to work OK
I will attempt to put up a photo of a young unmated queen. I am a bit IT challenged.[ You are not allowed to view attachments ]

Offline CoolBees

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Re: Is this a Virgin Queen?
« Reply #7 on: May 23, 2020, 03:35:26 pm »
Alan, I just started a new topic about a short abdomen queen that I found a few days ago. Kind of sort of in the neighborhood of your situation?

Definitely an anomaly Phillip. Maybe just a wayward VQ that lost her way. ...  anyways - hopefully she works out.
You cannot permanently help men by doing for them, what they could and should do for themselves - Abraham Lincoln