browser icon
You are using an insecure version of your web browser. Please update your browser!
Using an outdated browser makes your computer unsafe. For a safer, faster, more enjoyable user experience, please update your browser today or try a newer browser.

Know your queen cells!

Inspections are vital to beekeeping. Our bees give us clues about what they are planning to do and understanding these clues will help you to decide what to do next. Here are three ‘clues’ which will tell you whether to expect a swarm so that you can do some planning yourself.

A queen cup – empty. Bees build these but may not use them.

Credit: Shawn Casa

Ready to be capped queen cells with larvae and royal jelly (these cells have been cut from the comb!).
Time to make an artificial swarm!

Sealed queen cell – your bees have probably swarmed!

Credit: Cellule

 BE CAREFUL! If there is only one, or perhaps two queen cells and they are in the middle of the brood frame, your bees may be trying to replace their queen, this is called supersedure. Do not destroy these cells. Do not make an artificial swarm!

Credit: Waugsberg

 

And if you have ever wondered what’s going on in the cell: 

A secret view inside a capped queen cell.

Credit: Waugsberg