Re-Queening Chalky brood

Welcome to NZ Beekeepers+
Would you like to join the rest of our members? Feel free to sign up today.
Sign up
You will move this to another spot I guess Grant.šŸ˜
Sorry, I have forgotten.....
If I order new queens,how long do hives need to be queenless for them to accept her?
Also. How long can the queen live in her cage on arrival?
Just trying to get my head around it all.
And lastly
( Maybe? Please have patience and read slowly)
What do you think????
I have disguarded the worst of the chalk brood frames.More of course are developing. One hive is still bad. One not as bad and a touch in other hives....
I need to replace with new frames and don't like destroying healthy bees because of the bad ones.....
#1 Requeen.
#2 Put any infected frames below a queen excluder above bottom box ,so mummies fall easily onto base board
Keep check. Clean base board weekly. Let bees hatch.
Put new Queen above the excluder with honey pollen and some drawn frames. ( Does she HAVE to be popped onto a brood frame?)
Then she could lay happily and infected frames hatch and get removed?
Sorry I could be so wrong but here's hoping.
Tell me this is good? šŸ¤žšŸ½
Or not and I will learn.


Staff member
If I order new queens,how long do hives need to be queenless for them to accept her?
After about 6 hours the hive will know they are queenless. Then with the 3ish days it takes for the queen to be released, her pheromones should have been circulated and acceptance should be no problem. If they are queenless for longer, they may have decided to make their own replacement Queen.

Also. How long can the queen live in her cage on arrival?

That depends on how long she was in the cage before she got to you. If you cant place her immediately, give the bees in the cage a drop or two of water, and be sure to store somewhere warm and safe ie. where they wont get fly sprayed / out of direct sunlight...etc

I don't think putting the infected box on the bottom would be my choice of action for this reason. The foraging bees will need to walk thru it to get to the brood area, therefore spreading the spores. Whatever you choose to do should be guided by trying to reduce the spread of infection and also to maximize the colonies opportunity to build healthy brood quickly.

( Does she HAVE to be popped onto a brood frame?)
No. It just helps with acceptance
  • Like
Reactions: Josh
Hawkes Bay
Kill old Queen.
Stick queen cage in hive straightaway.
All done provided you broke open the candy door.
Commonsense suggests that longer hives queenless the better they will accept a new Queen but this is a case where commonsense is nonsense and the reality is the longer a hive is queenless the less likely they are to accept the new Queen.
Hives I did two weeks ago that were what I considered moderately bad chalk brood are now mostly clean and even the worst much improved.
Just remember there is no guarantee a new Queen will be better than what you have already got it comes to chalk brood resistance.
Good breeders including myself do always select for freedom from disease but have little or no control over the drone half of the mating.
When I have CB hive - if only one I replace Q until it succeed in clean up or I give up. Those which have CB, from that lineage by mother side I tend not to use for producing new queens. If I have few, I merge 2 in one and again replace the queen. Before I was cleaning hive, removing some brood frames.. now I stopped that also. If they don't clean them by themselves they are not up to survival.. Las time I had one CB entering into last winter, I replaced with new Q and I saw chalk larvae during late winter and early spring at the entrance and below on the ground - I thought it was failure. First inspection this spring, I found no CB brood and seemed Q right the ship. After it developed nicely and gave nice extraction lately. This Q is still at the apiary and looking nice..
When replacing Q, I just take old out and after excessive use of smoke I just place new Q in cage with followers. Lately I open bit more candy compound so the Q is released in 1-2 days. It works for me and I won't change it. Before I followed advice: remove Q and wait 4-6 hours and add new Q. I experimented with immediate replacement and found it successful - so why to complicate, rather to drink a beer for that extra time..
Also to mention as here I also learned and saw in practice - when is strong flow.. You can do to bees whatever You want, their attention is all about " working honey".. But I don't like that rush, cause I think when traffic is that high I lose more Qs. I rather want later q rearing - on ease..
All I wrote is my subjective thinking and doing, which nothing has to be right and true. I just gave my point of view of which You can freely use all what You think suits Your practice or none..