Miller Method – (8) Cells and (1) Virgin Queen

“You can’t always get what you want but if you try sometimes, well you might find, you get what you need.” – the Stones
I miscalculated the birth of the queens. On my queen rearing spreadsheet, queens hatch at (16) days – however, that is from the day the egg is laid. The queen actually hatches just (13) days after she is grafted/started.

Luckily I realized this yesterday and was able to rescue about (8) cells. There was a beautiful virgin queen milling around on the frame but she had just hatched and had not had time to begin her executions.

There were two opened queen cells but there were still (8) sealed ones. I used a knife to cut the cells out and then placed them in wire cell protectors. I said “about (8)” because I cut one cell a little close and opened the rear of the cell. The queen inside was still white but was moving. I pinched the end closed and then placed her at the far end of the cell bar so I would know which one she was. Maybe she will make it but I doubt it.

The upside is that on July 27th, I should have at least (7) newly mated queens plus the one I left in Hive-VE. Of course I am pleased that the Miller Method worked but I can’t count this as a queen rearing victory as it is not suitable for commercial use. Until I successfully start breeding queens using the grafting method, I am still just a hobbyist.

I did place the queen cells on the bottom of the same bar I use for grafting. This kills two birds with one stone: it lets the bees polish the cups while holding the new cells. On Wednesday I will make (9) mating nucs and place the (8) cells in them. I’ll make (9) in preparation for upcoming grafts.

I checked Hive-VD (giggle giggle) and it is doing well. It has two frames of bees in it and while there are still beetles, they seem to be held at bay. I did take the time to crush all the beetles I saw – I think this method (though time consuming) is actually fairly effective.
At this moment, I feel like things are starting to come together.

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