Laying workers

gregiorAugust 6, 2007

HI folks

One of my hives became queenless while i was away travelling,so i was not able to spot this until i returned some months later,unfortunately by this time it had developed laying workers.

I have now requeened the colony,but was wondering if the worker brood comb that had laying worker drones emerge from it would convert to drone cells once the new queen lays in it (due to the cells becoming larger) or wether worker bees could still emerge from these cells?

Many thanks for any replies in advance


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Greg, How long has it been since you requeened? From all I've read and heard from experienced beekeepers, it's very hard to get laying workers to stop, and hard to get the hive to accept a queen, and the longer it has remained queenless the less likely they are to accept either a queen or queen cells. They will usually tear down introduced queen cells and kill a queen. Drones from workers are usually smaller since they are raised in worker cells. I'd check to be sure the queen has been accepted. One possible course of action listed in my old copy of abc/xyz is to divide and distribute all of the frames from the laying worker hive among other hives and take a few frames from each of those hives and put them in what was the laying worker hive. Most of the field bees from the LW hive will return but the workers who are now trying to lay in the other hives will be killed. As I mentioned, this advice is taken from what I've read in books and heard from other beekeepers. I haven't experienced it firsthand. Hopefully your queen has been accepted and returned things to normal. You might also want to post your question on the forum. If you've never been there, google On the left click on "the exchange" and post your question in the general forum or the beekeeping 101 forum. I'm sure you will get some good advice. good luck!

    Bookmark   August 6, 2007 at 10:10PM
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Thx for the reply Tony
I haven't actually opened the hive up since the introduction,but the bees at the entrance were feeding and caressing the queen so all looked good.I'll have a check in a few days to see if she's been accepted.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2007 at 11:07PM
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