After a slow, slow start to the beekeeping season, we have managed to run out of queens. There were an excess of them on order, but we distributed so many that we have run short ourselves. Enough to finish splitting should arrive on Friday.
I did not have much luck with the lot of queens that came from Mark Sundberg. I think that about thirty percent of them failed. The majority of the failures had no evidence of a queen two weeks after introduction, but in several cases the yellow queen was just walking around the comb not doing anything—not even drone eggs. In the end it seems lucky that the MN queens arrived second, otherwise I would have lost a lot of time on my splits with even more failed queen introductions. I will probably look elsewhere for MN Hygienics for next year. Perhaps he will have some explanation. Our Koehnen queens give us an acceptance rate that is normally over ninety percent.
Tomorrow I graft the first homegrown queens of the summer….one month behind the typical schedule.