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Nicot & (My Bad) Timing

I finally decided to give the Nicot system a go. I need to get a picture up, but it is basically a queen rearing system. You confine the queen in a small box where she lays eggs. You can then take the eggs and easily put them on bars that the bees will draw queen cells from (that’s a real high level overview, which I may delve into deeper if I actually have some success!)

One of the things about any queen rearing system is timing. There are certain tasks that must be done at a certain time – you can’t wait one day or do it one day earlier. Once you commit, you have to perform each task exactly when it should be completed.

For me, this meant that I had to move my 1 day old larva into the rearing frame (a frame with crossbars that lets you attach the eggs to it, so they can draw out the cells) and then into the Starter Hive (I hope to go into this more later). The bottom line is that I had to open 1 hive, get some stuff out of it and then go to another hive and put the stuff into that hive.

So, what’s the big deal? Well, for one, we had the VSBA Spring Meeting this weekend. So, I had talks and stuff going on all day. Fortunately, there was a 2 hour break for lunch.

Next, the two hives were 25 miles apart (that’s lesson two for me). That meant I would be pushing it to get all of this done.

Finally (and most beautifully), it was raining…

All in all, I can say that it was a bit of a cluster. I do believe that everything went as well as it could and am hopeful for a good batch of queen cells from this experiment. More later.

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