Sunday, May 1, 2016

Making artificial Queen Cells

To make queen cells, you round the end of a 3/8" dowel so it fits perfectly into a natural queen cell. That's what queen rearing books say, but the entrance of the cell is smaller than the interior, so you have to cut away the top without distorting the bottom of the cell. Plus, when you push a stick into a queen cell, the wax distorts. Just how accurate do you have to be, anyways?
So I tried using a natural queen cell as a mold.
4 queen cells and my queen cell sticks
 I didn't have epoxy, but gorilla glue expands to fill a cavity.
A little stick to fit into the queen cell, a bottle of gorilla glue...
Stick it in, let it set...
y, voila!
The glue is too porous to dip into melted beeswax, plus, looking closely the shape is quite irregular, somewhat like one of Mar's moons. My bet is the bees will prefer my queen cells over their own.

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