Queen rearing season is upon us – just!
In our operation we pay a lot of attention to drones given that they are ¾ of the progeny of the queen. We pick our two best queens – one to supply drone material and one to graft queen material. We start this off 40 days prior to get well nourished drones.
For that purpose we use a strong colony with plenty of sealed brood. The first thing we do is treat for varroa because, as you know, the drone cell is a breeding ground for the varroa mite.
A short treatment of MAQS is the solution for us.
We then put a frame of drone foundation into a queen trap with the queen. We close it up and put it in the middle of the hive for about a week. We add a small feed on top if there is not a strong flow on.
This should give us around 3000 drones.
A word of caution – when you release the queen from the trap – you must check the hive for queen cells.
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