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Title: Improved Queen-Rearing - or, How to Rear Large, Prolific, Long-Lived Queen Bees The - Result of Nearly Half a Century's Experience in Rearing - Queen Bees, Giving the Practical, Every-day Work of the - Queen-Rearing Apiary
Author: Alley, Henry
Language: English
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[Illustration: _Yours truly Henry Alley_]

                         IMPROVED QUEEN-REARING


The Result of Nearly Half a Century’s Experience in Rearing Queen Bees,
    Giving the Practical, Every-day Work of the Queen-Rearing Apiary

                             BY HENRY ALLEY


                         PRINTED FOR THE AUTHOR

                        COPYRIGHT BY THE AUTHOR

[Illustration: Improved Bay State closed-end frame Bee-Hive. Used by
thousands of Bee-Keepers many years with great success. Construction of
brood-frames same as the Dawzeubaker. Frames are reversible and held in
position by side boards and two iron rods.]


This little book is written and designed to instruct those engaged in
bee-keeping in the art of rearing queen bees. The long experience of the
author in this particular branch of apiculture, as herein detailed, may
prove not only instructive but interesting. That the work may meet the
approbation of its readers is the wish of

                                                              THE AUTHOR

[Illustration: Illustration of the original Bay State Bee-Hive. Invented
and used by Henry Alley, more than twenty years ago. This hive was
specially devised for wintering bees successfully on summer stands and
for the production of the largest amount of honey.]



            Breeding queen, where to keep                16

            Cell building, how to prepare a colony for   18

            Cell building, method number one             19

            Cell building, method number two             26

            Cell building, method number three           29

            Cell building, feeding while going on        29

            Cell building, how to prepare eggs for       21

            Cell building, destroying eggs               22

            Cell building, theory of using young bees    24

            Cell building, how to rear the best          27

            Drones, objectionable                        37

            Drones, how to catch and destroy             37

            Drones, how to obtain and preserve           44

            Drone-trap, utility of                       46

            Honey, how to prevent candying               54

            Nuclei, how to form                          31

            Nuclei, how to feed                          44

            Pipe for burning tobacco                     41

            Queen-cell frame, description of             38

            Queen-cells, transferring                    40

            Queens, how to care for                      49

            Queens, age at which they mate               49

            Queens, virgin, forcing to mate              50

            Queens, age at which they lay                51

            Queens, to know fertile from unfertile       50

            Queens, fertilizing in confinement           51

            Queens, respect bees show them               51

            Queen-cells, destroying                      51

            Queens, comparative size                     53

            Queen-rearing, first improvements            11

            Queen-rearing, latest improved methods       12

            Queen-rearing, on a large scale              14

            Queen-rearing, proper conditions of apiary   15

            Queen-rearing, to prepare eggs for           16

            Queen-breeding colony, how to start          19

            Queen-breeding hive, how to make             17

            Queens, fertile, how to introduce            34

            Queens, unfertile, how to introduce          35

            Queen nursery, how to use                    29

            Queenless bees, necessity of                 28

                         IMPROVED QUEEN-REARING


         How to Rear Large, Prolific and Long-Lived Queen Bees


In the year 1857 I had very little knowledge of apiculture, yet I had
seen bees in hives apparently working, “making honey” as it was called
in those days by all who kept bees; had heard all the talk about the
“king bee,” and had seen hives draped in mourning when a member of the
bee-keepers’ family died. I had also seen the bee-keeper and his family
out in the apiary pounding upon tin pans, ringing the dinner bell, and
raising a hub-bub generally when a colony had cast a swarm. Then I had
seen bees “carry wax” on their legs, etc., etc.

Well, I did not require very much experience with bees to find out that
all the above performances were indulged in only by ignorant and
superstitious bee-keepers. With all the literature we now have
concerning apiculture, some bee-keepers may be found who know no more
about bees than those who kept them 50 years ago.

In the month of July, 1857, I found a fine swarm of bees hanging upon a
limb of a tree in my garden. The bees were hived in a small packing box,
and at once commenced to build comb and store honey. When fall came the
box was well filled with bees and stores, and the colony went into
winter quarters in fine condition, and came out in the spring strong in
numbers, proving to be a first-class colony in all respects.

In the spring of 1858, I purchased another colony which was in a
box-hive that had a 7 × 9 glass in the back side through which I watched
the bees many hours. Well do I remember the great interest I took in
bees at that time. One day while watching the bees through the glass, I
saw the queen pass around one of the combs, and had really seen the
great “king bee.” Before winter set in, I had not only seen other queen
bees but had actually reared a few. Then I got an idea that I had
learned all there was to know about bees and queen rearing. But this
little bit of egotism was dispelled by each year’s experience, and I
soon found that there was much to learn about bee-keeping. And now,
after my long experience in queen rearing, I find that no one can live
long enough to learn all there is to know about the subject of bees and
apiculture generally. Surely no one can learn the art of bee keeping in
one year as many bee-keepers of the present day claim.

Well, at the end of one year’s experience, I was seized with a desire to
go into queen rearing extensively. By this time I had learned that every
colony of bees had a queen and that drones were male bees; and also
found out hundreds of things about bees that I never before had known. I
had discovered that when a colony of bees was deprived of its queen it
would at once commence to construct queen cells, and rear several young

Rearing queens was so fascinating that I soon began to rear them in
great numbers, in fact I had them growing at all times during the warm
months. Of course this was only for amusement as no bee-keepers were in
want of queens, nor was there any demand for them. Well, I continued to
advance in the art and enlarge my experience, not only in rearing
queens, but in bee-keeping generally. About this time I found a man who
had also been “stricken” with the bee fever and he had as much
experience with bees as myself, and had reared queens merely to exhibit
at a cattle fair held in his town and only three miles from my place.
This man had made a frame about twelve inches square, to which glass was
fastened on both sides, thus forming a one comb observation hive. A
small piece of brood comb containing eggs and larvae was fastened at the
top of the frame by strings, and the bees, of which there were about a
pint, were actually building queen cells. Thousands of interested people
were watching the bees while at work, and many of the people were asking
all sorts of questions about queens, bees and honey. My first queens
were reared in about the same way as above described.

In the year 1860 I practiced queen rearing on a larger scale, as we had
then heard about Mr. Langstroth and his wonderful book and still more
wonderful hive, which is today more marvelous than anything else
connected with apiculture. From this time on rapid advancement was made
not only in queen rearing but in all branches of bee culture. We soon
went from box-hives to movable-comb hives. About this time the famous
Italian bees came in, and then queen-rearing was carried on in earnest;
not for amusement but queens were reared by the thousand for sale. At
first they were sent by express in small one-comb boxes, then by mail to
all parts of the United States; later on queens went by mail to all
parts of the world.

I have continued to rear queens for sale every year since 1860. At that
time no one had much knowledge of queen-rearing, and Mr. Langstroth’s
book was the only guide for every queen-dealer, and without his hive and
book but little could have been done in the way of rearing queens.

All who reared queens in those way-back days had good success in
obtaining first-class queens. You see no one had got “on to” the idea
that nature could be cheated and outdone in the production of queen
bees. Within a few years queens have been reared by such methods that
nearly all sold have proved to be worthless, so that dealers find they
must go back and adopt some of the early methods in order to give
satisfaction to their customers.


I shall not claim that any very great improvements have been made in the
quality of queens reared by the methods given here.

Having told you how queens were reared in the early days of the
queen-rearing business, I can now only give the process of doing the
work in other ways by improved methods. It will be understood that after
the advent of the movable-comb hive, bee-keeping took on a rapid move.
The second advance of importance was made when Mr. J. B. Parsons of
Flushing, N. Y., imported some Italian bees. It was soon noised all over
the United States that the yellow-banded bees were better than the
common black ones, or the German bee.

At this time many bee-keepers were in condition to rear queens and they
did so, and thus the queen-rearing and supply business has been on the
increase since the year 1862, or the advent of the Italian bee. We all
had, or thought we had, a lot of “know how.” Whether we had the know how
or not, no one experienced any trouble in rearing good queens, all being
satisfactory except in purity. Every one who purchased Italian queens
expected them to throw _all_ three-banded bees, and it was found almost
impossible to get a breeding queen that could be called strictly pure.
There was no fixed purity to the Italians; they were and are to this day
nothing but a hybrid strain of bees. With the exception of purity
everything went on smoothly in queen rearing.

Although some improvement has been made in the purity of the Italians,
there are very few pure queens reared; and bee-keepers continue to find
fault with the queens they purchase if there happens to be even but a
dozen “one-banded” bees in a large colony.


First the nucleus system. Any number of combs and bees taken from a full
hive constitutes a nucleus colony. We will start on a three-frame
nucleus with the L frame as a basis. Three such combs, say one of brood
in all stages and two of honey and pollen, with all the adhering bees,
are sufficient to form a good nucleus colony.

As there are but few bee-keepers who do not understand the above work,
and as none are likely to begin queen-rearing unless they can handle
bees to some extent, I need not go into the little details to describe
how to form nucleus colonies. But we will suppose a three-frame nucleus
has been formed, and the bees have been confined in the hive at least 24
hours with a supply of water, for bees that are deprived of their
liberty, and are rearing brood or queens, must have plenty of water or
the uncapped brood will perish. After 24 hours confinement the colony
can be given its liberty and placed on a stand anywhere in the apiary
somewhat remote, of course, from where they were first taken. After
being queenless for this length of time, the bees will have started
several queen-cells and have quieted down and only a few of the older
bees will return to the parent hive.

Now, to increase the population of the nucleus and to make it thoroughly
prosperous, other bees should be added each night, for three or four
nights in succession, say at about sunset. This is easily and quickly
done by taking a comb of bees from some strong colony and brushing or
shaking them down on the ground in front of the nucleus. In doing this
care must be used that the queen of the full colony is not taken.

The above was practiced by me in my early queen-rearing experience when
“vamping up” nucleus colonies. I was not long in discovering that there
was great advantage in adding young bees as per above. By so doing I
found that with each fresh lot of bees given the nucleus there would be
a new lot of queen-cells started.

In a few days the colony will be well established, and queen-rearing by
a most convenient process will be going on in a very successful manner.

Unless there is plenty of natural forage in the fields, the colony must
be fed continually or inferior queens will be the result. In the course
of about five days all the cells will be completed, that is, capped; and
from eight to twelve good queen-cells, most likely, formed.

At about the time the first young queen should appear, (say the twelfth
day from the day on which the eggs were given the bees), provision must
be made for preserving the cells or the young queens. Other nucleus
colonies must be made up for each cell or queen, as the case may be. The
cells may be transferred at once without danger of destruction from the
bees, provided the bees have been queenless for twelve hours. While bees
might not destroy queen-cells if given them before they miss their
queen, I find that they cannot be trusted in this respect, and that it
is much safer to give queen-cells to bees that have been queenless at
least 24 hours. It is not necessary to cut a hole in the comb to insert
a queen cell, but push your finger down between the combs at the top and
place the cell in the space thus made. If more convenient to use a queen
nursery when the cells are ripe, full directions for so doing may be
found on another page.


The above way of rearing queens has some advantages and some few
disadvantages. The objections to such a method are not very serious, as
they affect only those breeders who rear a large number of queens. When
bees are left to rear queens and select locations for the cells, many of
the cells will be built so near each other that they cannot be separated
without destroying some of the young queens. I have found that if holes
are cut in the combs to make convenient places for queens cells, the
bees are pretty sure to build them exactly opposite each other, that is,
cells are built on opposite sides of the comb. Yet these cells can be
removed; but in separating them the knife must pass through the base of
one of the cells; damage that is easily repaired by a little warm bee’s

With the above minor exceptions, the nucleus system as above given is
very good. For rearing queens on a small scale, I consider the above
method as good and as practical as can be desired. Such queens will be
found large, long-lived and in every way will equal those reared under
the swarming impulse. If you desire to practice and experiment in
queen-rearing, do not be afraid to try it. It is a good way for the
novice to start in on rearing queens.

Removing the queen from a full colony of bees is practically the same
method as above given; the difference is, however, that no more queen’s
cells are likely to be made than in a three-frame nucleus, and I hardly
think one could get any better results by the full colony plan in the
end. I very much prefer the nucleus system for rearing only a few
queens, and it will be found much less trouble and much less expensive.


I think I have given as much advice as a novice will need on the subject
of rearing a few queens, and will now describe how to rear queens by the

In this system a much smaller hive is used for nucleus colonies for
keeping the queens until they have become fertile. The little hives, or
boxes, used in my apiary have always worked as well with me as standard
frames. The reader can do as he pleases about using them, but I advise
testing the system and judging for ones self as to its merits.

Bear in mind that I am not laying down any stereotyped system of
queen-rearing. I shall give only that part of my long experience that
will prove of value to the inexperienced bee-keeper who desires to enter
queen-rearing; and I hope it will result in the production of much
better queen bees than many that are now being reared and sold. I advise
the reader to carry out any experiments that this work may suggest to
his mind. If any of my readers can improve upon the methods herein
given, I advise them, by all means, to do so.

I shall hold back nothing, but give in this work a full description and
explanation of every valuable point I have found in my forty years’
experience in rearing queen bees for the bee-keepers of the world. In
connection with this business I have conducted hundreds of experiments
that were found to be impractical and of no value.

I think many bee-keepers are in too much of a hurry to rush into print,
when they are seized with an idea that they have made a valuable and
important discovery in apiculture. When important discoveries are made
it is time enough to make them public after a thorough test.

Well, I could go on and spread this story out over 200 pages of this
size, but I think a more condensed form will be more comprehensive and
better in every way, therefore I will get down to the point at once and
drop the lecture part of the subject.


All who undertake to rear queens should understand that before such work
should begin the whole apiary should be put in the highest state of
prosperity; and the colonies to be used in queen-rearing made very
strong in numbers. The combs of all cell-building colonies should be
well filled with honey and pollen. It would be the merest folly to
attempt to rear queens when the whole or even a part of the apiary is in
a state of semi-starvation. So you see queen-rearing should not be
commenced in the spring until the weather is quite warm and the bees
have had a chance to breed up, fill all combs with brood and gather
nectar from the early bloom. Give the bees time enough on the early
bloom to get the swarming fever on.

Here in New England, in Massachusetts particularly, the 8th of May is
about as early as it is safe to commence to rear queens. However, if the
weather is fairly warm in April and the first week of May, colonies can
be so fed and stimulated that they may think it is about time to get
ready to swarm. By the way, I have heard of swarms issuing as early as
the 10th of May, and had one swarm on May 10, 1902.

Now here is a point at the start that should not be lost sight of. In
breeding queen bees the same rules should be observed as in the breeding
of animals. If desired to rear a colt, calf, chicken or any other
animal, the parents selected are not taken from scrubs or inferior
stock. The very best are selected. The same principle applies to bees.

Now for a queen mother take the best queen in the apiary, also for a
drone mother equal care should be taken to obtain the best. Of course in
the selection of the mother queen color and beauty are important factors
to be considered, and so is prolificness, longevity, and honey-gathering
qualities. It takes pretty good stock to combine all the above named
points. As for gentleness I find almost any strain of bees docile enough
to be handled with the use of a good bellows smoker. However, bees that
have vigorous dispositions are usually good honey-gatherers, and no
queen need be rejected as a breeder on account of the vicious
disposition of her worker progeny. Only an occasional queen breeds
vicious bees, and this trait is but seldom transmitted to offspring.


If only a few queens are to be reared, the mother bee may be kept in a
full colony; and if a few dozen queens only are required, I advise
placing a comb that the queens have used once or twice for brood in the
centre of a large colony. In about five days this comb should contain
several thousand eggs. Now some good queens can be reared on this comb
by the plan given as the nucleus system; but if you like to work with
bees for amusement and experiment, try the plan I shall now give.

When a large number of queens are to be reared, it will be found a good
plan to keep the breeding queen in a small hive having frames about five
inches square, with five frames to a hive. I have used such an
arrangement a great many years as above stated, and find it superior, in
many ways to a full sized frame for getting eggs for cell-building. By
this plan no combs are cut or mutilated when a few eggs are wanted,
whereas if full frames are used many good combs will necessarily be
destroyed during the season. Then again, it is very much more trouble
and work to open a large hive than a small one when necessary to have
some eggs to use. Any person rearing queens feels the need of time
saving devices, as there is always something to do when queen-rearing is
going on; I have found it so every day during the season.

One of the small combs will contain enough eggs for fifty queen-cells,
and a good prolific queen will fill such a comb and put an egg in every
cell during each twenty-four hours. Does not the reader see that by this
arrangement there are always fresh eggs at hand, and the exact age of
the eggs can be known to within almost an hour?

This one thing alone is a great point with me in my system of
queen-rearing, as I can know, and so can any one who practices this
method, just when to prepare bees for cell-building.

If a comb containing eggs is removed every day and a clean comb inserted
in its place, cell-building can go on every day in the week; and that is
the right way to do if a supply of queens is to be kept up to meet the
demands of customers whose orders come by every mail.

Now it may be that one queen will not supply all the eggs needed, or
that it is desired to rear more than one strain of queens. When this is
so, more breeding queens may be used, and they may be kept in small
hives. I have found that one good queen will supply enough eggs for 1500
young queens in one season.

[Illustration: Figure 1]


I will now describe the hive, fig. 1, for keeping the breeding queen in,
and give the dimensions of all the parts so that any one can make the
entire thing. Sides of hive, 6 in. high × 7¾ in. long × ½ in. thick;
ends, 6 × 6 in., ⅞ in. thick. Make rabbit for frames to rest on ½ × ½
in. in the 6 × 6 × ⅞ in. thick pieces. As the top bar of frame is but ¼
in. thick, there will be a bee-space of ¼ in. between the cover of the
hive and the top of the frame, and plenty of room under the frames for
the bees to cluster and be kept out of the way while the combs are being
handled. The bottom of the hive is 9 × 8¾ in. × ⅞ in. thick and is
nailed firmly to the bottom of the box. The top, or cover, is the same
as the bottom only there are two 1 × ⅞ in. thick clamps nailed on to
prevent the board from warping. Use ⅞ in. boards for the entire hive,
excepting the sides, as these hives must necessarily be out in all sorts
of weather, and rest upon the ground.

It will be found that the width of the hive allows for more room than a
regular bee-space for four frames, but this is quite an advantage when
handling the frames, as just a bee-space does not allow sufficient room
for easy handling the combs; and if they go in closely the queen and
many of the bees may be crushed when the frames are removed.

The dimensions of the frames are as follows: Top bar 6½ × ⅞ × ¼ in.;
bottom bar 5½ × ⅞ × ¼ in.; end pieces 5½ × ⅞ × ¼ in. The top and bottom
bars are nailed to the end pieces. A block is used to form them on when
nailed, so that when the frames are put up they are all alike.

To stock this hive with bees, brood, stores and queen, remove from a
full colony one comb containing brood in all stages of maturity with the
queen and adhering bees. Place the hive on the grass, or a cloth, and
brush the bees from the comb directly in front of it. They will at once
run in, or, at any rate, stay about the hive until the combs are
transferred to the small frames. To cut the combs in the small frames,
lay the full comb on a clean board, place one of the little frames over
it, and with a sharp knife cut the brood into the frame. If nicely done
no strings or sticks will be needed to keep the brood in the frame. One
of the combs should contain honey, pollen, etc.

The bees will soon repair the damage done the combs and brood, and, in
the course of 24 hours, this colony will be in condition for the
business of producing eggs for queen-rearing.

If any clean and nearly new pieces of comb about the size of the nucleus
frame are at hand use them for the breeding-queen to deposit eggs in.
Never place the empty comb at the side of the hive. The queen will
utilize it at once if placed near the centre of the brood-nest.

In four days after inserting the comb it will be filled with eggs and
larvae in just the light condition for cell-building and queen-rearing.
From this time on a new comb can be given the nucleus each day. If
desired to start cell-building every day in the week, eggs will always
be found in the right condition for use if the above instructions are

Now, I dislike the bother of starting queens every day. To avoid doing
so and still have plenty of eggs, I use three breeding queens and start
cell-building every fourth day. I like the idea of having hundreds of
queen-cells growing at one time. Then when queens hatch they come in
large numbers, and can be sent out by mail in the same proportion. A
large queen-dealer cannot do a successful business on a small scale. He
must branch out and have queens by the hundreds on hand at any time
during the season from which he can draw a supply of fertile queens when
orders are to be filled.


I think I have made the matter of getting eggs for queen-cells so clear
that all may understand how to proceed, and now will give several
methods for preparing colonies of bees for queen-cell building.

I have always worked on the theory that bees should be put in proper
condition for rearing queens several hours before any eggs are given
them from which they may rear queens. The entire colony should be put in
a “broody” state by dequeening and then given six hours at least to
realize their queenless condition. There are three ways for doing this.

[Illustration: Figure 2]

                           METHOD NUMBER ONE

Before giving any of the methods I will describe some of the necessary
apparatus to use in this arrangement. One of the handiest things for use
in the apiary is a wire screen shown in fig. 2. This screen is made in
about the same style as a common window screen and the size of the top
of the brood-nest of the hive. I always have at hand some half dozen of
these wire covers and they come into use many times when necessary to
confine bees in the hive.

Now when ready to “seize” a colony of bees for the purpose of forcing
them to rear queens against their natural will, proceed in this way: If
a colony working in sections is selected, the super should be removed
the previous day and all the bees allowed to return to the hive. When
the sections are taken off place the screen on and just fasten it by one
or two small nails. The next morning fasten the bees in by using a
similar screen and suitable for confining the bees so that none can
escape. Now the colony is ready to be taken to the bee-room and all the
bees removed from the hive and combs. To the novice this may seem like a
huge undertaking, yet it is not and does not require one half the time
to perform as it does to describe it so that it can be understood.

I so arrange my workshop that all the above work is easily and quickly
done. When the hive is taken to the bee-room it is placed on the cap of
a hive and then I just sit down and at once commence operations. The
first thing is to give the bees tobacco smoke at the entrance as well as
some at the top through the screen, all the while drum on the hive, or
excite the bees by striking the hands on the sides of the hive. This
causes the bees to fill with honey and in the course of ten minutes they
are ready and in condition to be brushed from the combs into a box where
they will remain quiet until all are removed from the combs and hive.
The screen is first removed from the top, the bees shaken from it, then
the combs are taken out, one at a time, and all the bees brushed from
them into a hive-cap. While doing this work some of the bees may attempt
to fly, or crawl up the sides of the cap, if they do, more smoke is
blown among them, when they soon quiet down and remain so for quite
awhile. When all the bees have been removed, the queen should be hunted
up. If the work of finding the queen is rightly done, it will not
require but a few minutes to find her. Of course the bees must be pushed
over considerably in the operation. The best tool for such a purpose is
the wide part of a 4 × 4 section. Never use feathers or a small broom
for such work.

When the queen is found, the bees are forced into one end of the cap by
a sudden strike of the box on the floor, and then they are quickly
dumped into another box the exact size of the hive the bees were taken
from. This latter box has a wire-cloth bottom; the cover is a screen
same as above described. This arrangement gives the bees all needed air
while confined. It is necessary to nail three pieces of wood ⅞ inches
square across the bottom of the box so that the air will not be shut out
when the box is resting on anything. The bees are then put in a cool
place until the time arrives for giving them eggs for cell-building.

The bees disposed of, we now have all the brood of a strong colony to
take care of. Now for the first two or three colonies treated as above,
I divide the brood among the weaker colonies in the apiary. By this
operation, the light colonies soon become strong and in condition for
the first flow of honey. At this stage of the work, we have a colony of
queenless bees; the brood disposed of, and everything is in readiness
for starting the bees to building cell-cups in a natural and practical
way. We will now suppose the bees have been queenless six hours. The
next move is to get the frame, or piece of comb containing the eggs, cut
in strips and fasten in position so the bees will at once commence work
on cell-cups.

This work cannot be done in a cold room. Have in the workshop a
three-wick oil stove, not only for heating purposes but to use in other
necessary work in queen-rearing operation. Another thing that must be at
hand is a tin vessel in which there are equal parts of rosin and
bees-wax. Melt these on the oil stove, mix thoroughly and when quite hot
it will be ready for use.

[Illustration: Figure 3]

We will now suppose the comb containing eggs for queen-cells has been
taken from the hive and is at hand ready to be prepared. This is cut in
strips by using a thin, hot knife by the lines as shown in fig. 3. Now
the egg in each alternate cell of the strips should be removed in order
that sufficient room may be given for large queen-cells. I know of no
better way of doing this than by taking a common “scratch” match between
the thumb and fore finger, inserting the “scratch” end in the cell and
rapidly twirling it for a moment. This effectively destroys the egg as
shown in fig. 4.

[Illustration: Figure 4]

Now the next thing to do is to fasten the comb on strips of wood and in
such a position that the bees will construct a large number of
queen-cells. Fig. 5 illustrates three rows of completed queen-cells and
the manner of fastening the strips of comb to the wood. This is done by
lightly dipping the strips of comb in the wax mixture. Just touch the
edges of the cells of the opposite side of those in which the eggs were
destroyed and quickly place the comb on the wood.

The strips of wood mentioned here, but more fully described on another
page, are 1–4 inches thick, 1 inch wide and cut any length desired. The
queen-cells shown are fastened to such strips of wood described. The
cells illustrated are completed and nearly matured, or, in other words,
are about ripe. The illustration shows but few cells; this was owing to
the fact that they were built late in the season and from drawn
foundation, in fact, they were the last hatch of queen-cells of the
season 1902. Earlier in the summer, the bees under the same conditions
would have started many more queen-cells. However, the illustration is
the best one I have been able to obtain of completed queen-cells.

To go back to fastening the strips of eggs to the pieces of wood, will
say that when placing the strips in position if the comb is pressed down
a little harder at both ends than it is in the middle, it will be made a
little curving on the underside, thus giving more room for the
queen-cells. But this curving business must not be carried too far, as
too much curving will elongate the cells and the bees will remove the
egg from all such and but few queens would be reared.

The reader will appreciate the fact that it is almost impossible to lay
down any set rules, or to describe every little detail connected with
the rearing of queen bees.

I can give all the main points in the business, but those who rear
queens by them must use good judgment and a fair amount of common sense.
That is what is needed in the queen-rearing business. Experiment and
practice are as much needed in queen-rearing as in any other occupation
one is at work at.

A piece of nice worker comb 5 × 5 inches square will furnish all the
eggs a large colony of bees should be allowed to work into queen-cells.
Such a piece of comb if carefully cut will make about ten strips
containing a dozen or more eggs. Always give eggs in proportion to the
quantity of bees that are to do the work of cell-building.

[Illustration: Figure 5]

When the strips of comb are fastened to the sticks and in the frame,
they should be placed in a brood-box and the balance of the space of the
hive filled by combs of honey and pollen. In no case use combs that have
brood in them.

Now all being ready set the box of bees in a convenient place on the
floor: put the box of combs between yourself and the bees. With a sudden
drop of the box on the floor all the bees will go to the bottom and
before they can recover from their surprise, remove the cover, place it
on the box of combs and quickly place the combs over the box of bees.
Now all the labor is done excepting giving the bees water until the next
morning. All this work can be done without even one bee escaping in the
entire operation.

The bees can be left in the bee-room over night, and placed on the stand
about 10 o’clock the following day. Water may be supplied them while
confined by splashing a little over the frames and on the bees, through
the wire cover at the top.

When the bees are released they may be somewhat excited, not being
wholly reconciled to loss of their queen. To pacify them place a caged
queen at the entrance for a few hours, then they will quickly quiet down
and the queen can be taken away and all will go on as though nothing had
happened to the colony.

The bees are left 24 hours to build cell-cups, and then another thing
must be done if first-class queens are to be reared. Now the colony to
which the eggs are given will commence to build from 40 to 60 cell-cups,
or would rear from 40 to 60 queens if none of the cell-cups were
removed. But such a thing should never be permitted, as not one queen
out of all those reared would be of any good. Should the colony commence
to build 60 cell-cups, the proper thing to do would be to divide that
number of cells equally among three strong colonies of bees. Well, you
say, how can this be done? If at this time bees are gathering honey from
the fields and in a high state of success, the cell-cups can be placed
above a colony of bees as has been and is now practiced by many breeders
of queen-bees. I want it understood, however, that I do not so advise
anyone, as by the method to follow this very much better queens are
reared. Yet if bees are in a swarming mood, pretty good queens are
reared over the brood-nest.

I shall advise all not to rear queens by above method excepting at
swarming time, as under no other conditions can good queens be reared by
such a system when any kind of a queen is in the hive the bees occupy.
Of course, if a colony is about to supersede its queen, fairly good
queens are reared while a queen is in the colony.

Only a few of the queens reared under the supersedence process are
first-class. Bees do not seem to work with that interest when
superseding an old queen as they do when absolutely queenless, or are
about to cast a swarm.


I have given three methods of preparing bees for cell-building. The
final result is the same in all cases. The only difference being in the
manner of doing the work of preparing the bees. Now, how many of my
readers understand the correct theory of taking all the bees of a colony
for such work rather than only a part of it? Let me describe. Old bees
will not and cannot rear good queens; they will commence cell-cups and
complete queen-cells, but no strong queens will come from them.

Why is this so? Simply because old bees have passed from the stage of
nurses to the sphere of honey and pollen-gatherers, or out-door workers.
Old bees cannot prepare the proper food for nursing either worker or
queen-bee larvae.

What are considered old bees in this connection are those that have been
made queenless and kept so from three days to a week; such bees are of
no value as cell-builders, as after being queenless thirty-six hours
they seem to lose their enthusiasm and interest in the work.

Now as to the correct theory of taking _all_ the bees of a colony for
cell-building or for rearing queens. By such an operation every nurse
bee in the hive is taken, and this includes thousands of just hatched
bees that are maturing each day as nurse bees, thus keeping up a
constant supply of nurses.

How many of the readers of this work ever watched bees building
queen-cells in an observatory hive? Why, a queen-cell, until it is
capped is never without a worker bee’s head in it. The young bees keep a
constant watch over the little worm within, and it is supposed that each
bee that thrusts its head into the cell leaves a small amount of royal
jelly. You all know that every cell from which a strong and healthy
queen has emerged contains a lump of royal food as large as a pea. The
amount is greatly in excess of the needs of the royal occupant.

It is the young bees that do all the labor in the hive and in rearing
queens, and the more young bees there are engaged in the work the better
will be the quality of the queens reared.

By this the reader will understand why all the bees of a colony should
be used in building cell-cups and in completing queen-cells.

Has any one connected with the rearing of queen-bees ever before
explained this point in any book or publication?

Notwithstanding the fact that young bees are constantly maturing as
nurse bees, as above detailed, it is not good policy to compel any given
lot of bees to commence cell-cup building a second time. After once
starting one batch of cell-cups the interest and enthusiasm has
vanished, and pretty poor work will be done.

Hens, ducks and birds of all kinds will sit on their eggs for a time,
but there is a limit to the “broody” condition in all such cases. Hens
have been known to sit six weeks, or rather have been compelled to sit
long enough to “hatch out” a second brood of chickens. But in many such
cases the nest is deserted before the second lot of eggs mature. It’s
but little use to overwork Nature. Natural laws must be observed in all
such cases. This I have tried to apply to all my operations in


                           METHOD NUMBER TWO

My favorite way of preparing bees for cell-building is given in Method
No. 1. No doubt many will say they cannot do any thing of the kind; ’tis
too fussy and takes too much time, etc. It is not fussy nor in any way
difficult to perform. However, I will give two other methods for
preparing bees for cell-building, making a colony queenless, etc.

We must start in the same as in case No. 1, that is, the sections must
be removed the day previous.

Now proceed in the usual way of “drumming out” a swarm. The proper way
to do this, and the way I practiced artificial swarming, or dividing a
colony of bees, is as follows: Blow rottenwood smoke among the bees
through the entrance; this so alarms the colony that all the bees
commence to fill their sacs with honey. By drumming on sides of the
hive, while smoking is being done, greatly helps in the operation.

When the bees seem ready to go up into the cap, more smoke should be
introduced and a vigorous drumming on the hive kept up. In this way
about two-thirds of the colony will run up into the cap. Now give them a
few minutes to sort of settle down and become quiet. Remove the cap,
invert it and throw a cloth over the box. Give the bees a few puffs of
tobacco smoke under the cloth. In a few minutes the cloth can be
removed, the queen hunted out and the bees dumped into a box same as
described in Method No. 1.

By this plan bees, in either box or frame hives, can be utilized for
queen-rearing. The queen can be re-introduced at once.

In a few hours, bees thus prepared, will be ready to build queen-cells
and all that is necessary to do is to proceed as in case of No. 1.

                          METHOD NUMBER THREE

Early in the morning remove the queen from a populous colony. At night
they will be in a proper condition for cell-building. When ready,
prepare the eggs and queen-rearing hive as given above. Remove the
queenless colony to a new stand, twenty feet away, and put the
queen-rearing hive in its place. Now after arranging to brush the bees
down in front of the latter hive, take out the combs of the queenless
colony and brush or shake, at least one-half of the bees in front of the
queen-rearing hive. They will all run in and at once commence to
construct queen-cells, and the next day will be seen working just the
same as if nothing had happened to them. The queen removed in the
morning may be given back to the old colony.

This operation so depopulates the colony that little will be done in the
supers for a week or ten days. But as the combs are filled with brood in
all stages, and as the queen is with them, the stock will soon recover
and get back in fine condition.

I have tried to make the above very clear. Of course it is all plain and
easy to me, but how other people can translate it so as to understand it
is the question. In none of the works I have published were the methods
made so clear, but nearly all who read these books have stated that they
had no trouble in rearing queens by the methods given.

The “Beekeepers’ Handy Book,” a work of nearly 200 pages, and “Thirty
Years Among the Bees” were treatises on queen-rearing published by me
within the last fifteen years. Some 5000 copies were issued and both
books are now out of print.

                    HOW TO REAR THE VERY BEST QUEENS

Of all the methods I have given or shall give for having cell-cups, or
queen-cells completed, none of them will compare with the one given
below. I believe this method is entirely new. Certain am I that it never
has appeared in any publication, nor has it even been brought to my
notice by anyone.

After reading what follows the reader will understand why I advised
letting queenless bees work on cell-cups from twelve to twenty-four

In the course of twelve hours after bees have worked on the queen cells,
remove the queen from one of the strongest colonies in the yard. Twelve
hours later remove one of the side combs from the hive and three or four
other combs laterally so as to leave space in the centre of the
brood-nest for one of the frames on which the queen-cells are started.
Now cover up with a super or in any way to suit the convenience of the
apiarist. Not later than five days remove the frame of completed
queen-cells to a queenless colony, replace the combs in the hive just as
they were at the start and reintroduce the queen and never mind about
looking the combs over for queen-cells, as the old queen will be well
received and will soon destroy all queen-cells that may have been

Of course if there are cell-cups enough started by the queenless bees,
say 40 or 60, not less than three strong colonies should be prepared as
per above, as 20 queen-cells are as many as the largest stock of bees
should complete.

The above operation does not so disturb the bees that they will desert
the sections. In all this work it is better to be quiet and do the work
as quickly as possible. Also do as much of it at about sunset as that
late hour will permit.

                      NECESSITY OF QUEENLESS BEES

Right here will be found the necessity of queenless bees in the apiary.
Such colonies must care for the completed queen-cells when removed from
the colony that built them until such a time as the cells can be
transferred to nuclei or the nursery.

One doing a large queen-rearing business will need several queenless
colonies at all times. Not only must queenless bees be used in caring
for queen-cells, but for queens confined in the queen nursery.

When the bees are removed from a hive for the purpose of starting more
cell-cups, the bees that have just completed a batch of cells may be put
on the combs and a queen given them at once, and in a short time, say
two weeks, such a colony will be in as good condition as any in the

This thing can go all through the queen-rearing season. Only a few
colonies need be made queenless in the beginning, and then no colony
will of necessity need be queenless.

I would not advise using one colony for cell-building but once in four
weeks. It requires a lot of colonies to rear queens in the above way,
but the results are so satisfactory it will be found much the cheapest
in the end.

Good queens is the main point in queen-rearing. Never mind about the
cost. If the right methods are used in rearing queens, good queens will
cost no more than poor ones.

Bee-keepers the world over are interested in the subject of better
queens. We all know that queens to supply the demand must be reared by
what is called artificial methods. The best methods must be put in
practice if the bee-keeping public is to be satisfied. Cheap and
inferior queens have had their day, and those who rear the best will get
the business and they should have it, too.


It should be understood that when queen-rearing is going on and no
forage in the fields, feeding must be resorted to; a syrup composed of
honey and granulated sugar will answer all right for food. Feeding not
only keeps up the excitement, but the interest in the work the bees are
doing. Keep up a liberal supply until the cells are capped.

During the past season I conducted some experiments in feeding clear
honey and clear sugar syrup while cell-building was going on. The
results of my experiments clearly show that sugar syrup with some honey
is just as good to feed bees in queen-rearing as the best honey. This
fact I could not believe until I had made the above experiment;
therefore it will be seen that food has no influence whatever on the
quality of the queens reared. Other conditions and circumstances do have
a positive influence on the embryo queens; large colonies, thousands of
young bees, plenty of stores of both honey and pollen, and then when the
colony is put in fine condition for queen-rearing, the result is fine
queens. Observe all these conditions if success is desired.


One would naturally think that when a lot of ripe queen-cells are at
hand the thing to do would be to form nuclei for the reception of the
cells or young queens. It is not so in my case. I never allow queens to
hatch in nuclei. My reasons for this are many. I like to secure a large
number of queens, say 50 or 100, and critically examine each one to see
that they are all right before making up nucleus colonies.

All of my queens are hatched in nurseries and in such cages as
illustrated in fig. 6. The size of these cages is such that 35 of them
just fill one standard Langstroth frame having a thin top bar. These
cages are sawed and fitted so nicely that they will stay in the frame
without fastenings of any kind.

It will be seen that there are two holes in the edge of the cage. One is
for a queen-cell, the other for a small piece of sponge which is filled
with honey slightly diluted with water. The water prevents the sponge
drying too quickly and the honey furnishes food for the young queens
some two weeks. When the cages are ready, and the cells in them, a frame
is filled and then is placed in the center of a large colony of bees,
and between two full combs of brood. This sort of hive-incubator works
splendidly and in the course of 48 hours all the young queens will be
hatched out, when the nursery should be removed and placed in a
queenless colony or in a colony nursing unhatched queens.

Before any young queens are introduced they should be closely examined,
and if any are found not up to the standard, or in any way inferior,
they should be destroyed. If any cells containing inferior queens are
given nucleus, or inferior queens introduced, and not looked after until
they have been in the hive long enough to become fertile, it will be
found that much valuable time has been lost. I cannot afford to take
such chances, therefore I want to see and examine all queens before
giving them to colonies.

[Illustration: Figure 6]

The above is one of the reasons why I use a queen nursery; another
reason is that each nursery cage is equal to a nucleus colony.

My plan has always been to have queens ready to give nuclei in three
days after removing a laying queen. That is as soon as a virgin queen
can safely be introduced in such cases.

The queen nursery is one of the most valuable implements any queen
breeder can have in his apiary. Nothing has ever been devised that
equals its usefulness. I surely could not rear and ship the large number
of queens I do every year without using a nursery, or going to the
expense of running double the number of nucleus colonies to take the
places of the nursery cages. The nursery saves about one half the
expense in money and bees, as well as much labor. I not only use the
nursery for virgin queens and cell-hatching, but for keeping a supply of
fertile queens all through the season.

The nursery illustrated in fig. 7 is of an old pattern, takes but 18
cages and accommodates only as many queens.

[Illustration: Figure 7]

                             FORMING NUCLEI

This part of queen-rearing reminds me of the remark made by Mr. S. M.
Locke when he returned to Wenham after spending two or three seasons
with D. A. Jones and J. H. Nellis, both of whom were engaged largely in
the queen-rearing business.

I made up a lot of nuclei while Mr. L. looked on and saw my way of doing
such things. “Well,” says Mr. L., “I never saw nuclei made up in such a
quick and easy way!” My way may be better than some others do it. I plan
to do all my work in the easiest and quickest way. I find no time to
waste in the queen-rearing business.

In forming nucleus colonies I will first give a way that all must
practice when starting in on queen-rearing. All my nucleus hives, or
boxes, are the same as is illustrated in fig. 1. I like this style far
better than any I have ever tried. Always have had the best of success
in getting queens fertilized in them, and, in fact, never have had any
trouble with these hives in any way. Some people suppose, and naturally
enough too, that where these little colonies are kept in the same yard
with strong colonies, that much robbing would be going on. It is not so,
and I never have had any robbing in my apiary. No good bee-keeper, it
seems to me, so does his work in the apiary that robbing is induced. Of
course when putting up queens the nuclei must be opened in the middle of
the day. Sometimes robbers come around to see what is going on. The work
of removing a queen is quickly performed and if strange bees appear the
hive is closed; that is, combs replaced, cover put on and a handful of
grass is thrown against the entrance. While the bees of the colony can
find their way out of and into the hive, no strange bee dares to try to

If I were about to start in queen-rearing I would form nuclei in about
this way: Rather than destroy the nice straight combs of a standard hive
I would just look around the country for some box-hives. I really love
to go through those back-number things; they are an eye-sore to me.

Take the hive into the bee-room and treat the bees same as in case of
getting “bees for cell-building.”

Take off side of hive, cut out the combs and brush all the bees from
them into a hive-cap. When all are out dump the bees into the box used
for confining bees for queen-rearing. Next move is to cut the combs into
the little frames. After first nailing screens to cover entrance to the
hives in such a way that the bees will have plenty of fresh air, the
boxes should each have three combs put in them. One of the combs should
be brood, the others may be brood, honey, etc. One comb of honey may be
put in after the bees are in.

Have at hand all the covers so they can be put on quickly after the bees
are put in.

We return now to the bees in the confining box, and all is in readiness
for dividing them up in pint lots among the hives.

Next step is to get the bees in condition to be handled without flying
while they are being doled out to the several hives. Blow tobacco smoke
among them until they seem quiet. Now this does not mean to keep up a
flow of smoke until the bees drop to the bottom of the box. Use but
little smoke at any time, or until the bees stop running about the box.
In the course of 5 or 10 minutes they will be ready to handle. Strike
the bees down into the bottom of the box by dropping it on the floor.
With a light measure (tin one is best) holding about a pint and having a
handle several inches long, divide the bees among the nucleus hives in
nearly equal parts as possible. If the bees have been put in the right
condition by the tobacco, they can be handled just about the same as so
many beans.

Of course there will be a queen to look up. However, this is an easy
matter. Rather than spend the time to look her up she is allowed to go
in with the bees. When the nuclei are formed, the bees in the hive in
which the queen happens to be will be found more quiet than those that
have no queens. Unless I have some use for such a queen she is allowed
to remain with the bees and build up a prosperous colony; that is,
prosperous for such a small hive.

Sometimes I have as many as half a dozen queens caged in my bee-room.
They are placed on the bottom sash of the window and all the bees in the
room collect and cluster on the cages, attracted and held there a long
time by the queens. The bees feed and otherwise take good care of them.

Another way to do, and a thing I often do is this: I sometimes purchase
bees in box-hives, transfer the combs and then put bees and combs in a
hive that takes 13 of the frames, using two sections for a large colony.
The 26 combs give a large amount of breeding room and such a colony very
quickly builds up to a large and prosperous one. Such a hive is
illustrated in fig. 8.

[Illustration: Figure 8]

The bees thus treated soon repair the combs and get into fine condition
to be transferred to the small hives. When nuclei are formed as above,
they should be kept confined in the hives from 24 to 48 hours before
being released, then remove the screens at night when too late for bees
to fly. The next morning the colony will be found ready for business.

By this time the bees will have more or less queen-cells, or cell-cups
started, and fully reconciled to the new state of things, and only a few
of the older bees will return to the stand they had previously occupied.

The only thing that can be done with these hives is to set them on the
ground in any place in the apiary. Still, it is a good idea to take them
away from home for several weeks when they may be returned to the home
yard and no bees would return to the old location.

I sometimes have several queen-rearing yards two miles apart where my
nuclei are kept during the entire season—several hundred nucleus
colonies are made up and at once taken away and in this way our apiaries
are established, but for nuclei only.

If more convenient to do so bees may be brought from a distance for
forming nucleus colonies, and when this method is practiced the bees can
be placed in the home yard. This plan works nicely as I have found when
forming nuclei.

                           INTRODUCING QUEENS

We have now come to one of the most interesting parts of apiculture, and
that part of queen-rearing that has been the cause of much trouble and a
great deal of discussion for many years. When it comes to the
introduction of queens, either fertile or unfertile, nearly all
bee-keepers, whether experts or novices, are all at sea.

In the case of introducing unfertile queens, one thing should be kept in
mind, namely, the older the virgin queen the more difficult and
dangerous it is to safely introduce them. Virgin queens, so far as bees
are concerned, cease to be “baby” queens when they are three days old;
after that it is very difficult to introduce them, though I have no
trouble in introducing them successfully by using tobacco smoke.

I cannot say which is the most difficult to introduce, virgin or fertile
queens. It requires in either case some little experience in order to be
successful. Some times bees will destroy a strange queen even when she
is introduced under the most favorable conditions. No one can introduce
a virgin queen successfully unless the bees to receive her have been
queenless at least three days.

In all my experience I have practiced but one method of introducing
queens. It is what I term the three-day plan. I seldom lose a queen by
it. No doubt other bee-keepers have as good methods of introducing
queens as I have. But the first and last queens I have introduced were
by the system given below. I cannot think of giving up a sure thing for
something I know nothing about.


My plan is to let colonies, whether full stocks or nucleus, remain
queenless three days, or not far from 72 hours. Then just before dark
the queens are given the bees by this process: I generally have from 25
to 50 virgin queens to introduce at one time. The cages are placed in a
convenient box having a handle. Then as many plantain leaves as there
are queens to introduce are pulled and put in the box ready for use.
These leaves are for closing the entrance to each hive in which queens
are to be placed. Armed with the pipe before mentioned, all is in
readiness for introducing the queens. The feeder used at the top of the
hive is removed, a good dose of smoke is blown in among the bees and
combs. The feeder replaced until the stopper in the cage is removed, and
then the queen by a quick motion is thrown out and into the feeder hole.
Then the feeder is again quickly put in position, and no further
attention is given the bees.

I have introduced successfully as many as fifty virgin queens in thirty

The art of introducing unfertile queens requires more experience to be
successful than it does to introduce fertile queens. In fact, one must
be very apt, possess a good deal of tact, and I can almost say, must be
very scientific. However, most any bee-keeper can learn how to perform
such work successfully. One may read how others do these things, but
practical knowledge, in order to know all the little details of such
intricate and delicate work as introducing queens can only be had by
long practice and experience. Just how much tobacco smoke to give the
bees when introducing a queen is a point that requires more or less
practice and good judgment.

I never have been so unfortunate as to give bees too much smoke at such
times. Am not certain that bees can be killed by tobacco smoke if they
can get fresh air soon after smoking them. The effect of the smoke soon
passes off and the bees resume a normal condition.

Bear in mind that unless the work of introducing queens by using tobacco
is done very late in the day, or on some cool day when bees cannot fly
very much, your apiary will be ruined, as robbing may be induced.
Tobacco smoke puts the bees in such a condition they cannot defend their
stores from robber bees, and once robbing is commenced among the small
nuclei it is almost impossible to stop it. Should such a thing happen it
would be necessary to remove the entire nuclei to a distant location.

                       INTRODUCING FERTILE QUEENS

It requires some experience and practice to introduce fertile queens.
Allow all full colonies to be queenless three days before giving them a
strange queen. Even a queen removed from a colony but twenty-fours, if
returned would be received as a strange queen. Now when the colony has
been queenless seventy-two hours, give the bees tobacco smoke and let
the queen in; or allow the bees to eat the candy-food out and liberate
her. The smoke from a cigar or pipe will do to introduce fertile queens,
but not virgin queens.

Never put a queen near the bees of a colony she is to be given to until
ready to introduce her. Many make this mistake. Toward dark is the time
to introduce queens whether or not tobacco is used. Certainly this has
been my experience.

In introducing queens by using tobacco it is not necessary to give the
bees a powerful dose of smoke. Give enough smoke so that the bees will
feel the effects of it pretty well. The tobacco sort of odorizes the
combs, bees and queen, so that all are scented alike. When the bees
recover from the effects of the smoke they really don’t remember whether
they were ever without a queen, so they take kindly to the new queen and
no trouble ensues.

I once tried a “chew” of tobacco. Was on my way to school. In a short
time I didn’t care whether school kept or not, in fact, I hardly knew
anything about it I was so sick. That was my first and last “chew” of
tobacco. Now I imagine the bees feel somewhat in that way when they are
made sick by tobacco.

Bees cannot be killed by tobacco if they are given the air. The plantain
leaves by which the entrance hole is stopped is thrown out, or so
loosened before the next morning that the bees get all the air they
need. One passing by the hives in which queens were introduced the
previous evening cannot discover that such work was done by any
indications about the hive or bees.


If black bees, hybrid bees, or, in fact any bees that are to be used in
queen-rearing have undesirable drones among them they can be easily
caught and destroyed. The most effective way of doing this is when the
bees are put to work building queen-cells. My way of doing it is as
follows: At the time the hive for cell-building is prepared and is ready
to place over the bees as given on page 23, a metal division-board is
put on the box and then the hive containing the prepared strips, combs,
etc., is quickly placed on the metal. Nearly all the worker bees at once
go up into the box above, leaving the drones below.

[Illustration: Fig. 9]

[Illustration: Fig. 10]

In placing the bees on the stand it is not necessary to use smoke of any
kind. First, place a bottom-board in position and quietly raise the box
containing the bees, letting the rear end strike the bottom-board in
such a way that the combs will not be disturbed and gradually lowering
the hive so as not to crush any bees.

The box of drones may be so placed against the front end of the
bottom-board that all the young bees, if any are left in the box, may
run out, leaving the drones below the metal to perish.

Just such a frame as is used for the wire screen cover may be used to
nail the metal to, as the entire top of the box should be covered in
order to catch all the drones.

How to catch and destroy drones in full colonies will be explained under
the head of “Drone and Queen-traps.”


In my early experience in rearing queens I used combs in standard L
frames to attach the strips of comb containing the eggs for queen-cells.
While such an arrangement worked well in 3-frame nucleus colonies, there
are disadvantages in so doing when used in full colonies and by my
present system of queen-rearing; therefore I adopted the all-wood frame
and in combination with the wood-strips as shown in fig. 5 and it works

[Illustration: Figure 11]

The frame is a standard L style into which are nailed two pieces of wood
A A. There are four notches cut in on the inner edges two inches a part,
into which the four pieces of wood are placed and are thus held firmly
in position.

By examining the queen-cells illustrated in fig. 5, it will be seen that
they are long and pointed, also very heavily waxed and corrugated. They
do not much resemble the row of queen-cells lately illustrated in one of
the bee-papers.

The heavy waxing and large, long cells are the strongest indications
that such cells contain very hardy and perfect queens. Fig. 9
illustrates a perfect queen-cell, while fig. 10 shows a queen-cell that
always contains inferior queens.

Queen-cells that are short, blunt-end, thin-walled and thinly waxed, as
shown in fig. 10, contain very inferior queens, and all such cells
should be destroyed. They are just such queen-cells as bees make when
they have a queen of any kind in the hive.

The cells shown in fig. 5 were built in a powerful queenless colony late
in September, 1902, and were the last lot of cells built in my apiary
that season, consequently not as many cells were built as would have
been the case had the season not been quite so far advanced, yet the
number of cells are as many as the strongest colony of bees should be
allowed to build or finish up from the 24-hour cell-cups. The mistake
many queen-breeders make is in permitting one colony of bees to build so
many cells in one batch.

[Illustration: Figure 12]

A colony that has cast a swarm seldom leaves over eight or ten
queen-cells. In rearing queens it seems to me the breeder might be
governed somewhat as to the number of cells a colony should build by the
judgment of the bees when working as Nature designed them to work.
However, bees do not do things as we think they should, therefore many
try to improve matters, and I freely admit that I think in some cases
man has made the bees do many good things they would not have done had
they not been compelled to, or been assisted to do in their work.

For instance, let us take up the way bees construct queen-cells when
left to do it in their way, or, in the natural way. Fig. 11 illustrates
how bees build queen-cells when they have their way in the matter. Now
how can cells built in that manner be cut out without destroying many of
them? It cannot be done. The cells are built in a cluster and all
fastened to each other. Some of them could be patched up as described on
another page, and many good queens would be reared. The very best queens
are produced by the cells built as shown in the cluster, nevertheless.
Fig. 12 illustrates the improved way of compelling bees to construct
queen-cells. It will be seen that all the seven cells can be separated
without destroying any of them when necessary to cut them out to place
in the nursery or in nuclei.


As queen-cells are now built so that they are easily cut out and
separated without destroying any of them, the work of transferring them
to nuclei or to the queen-nursery is not difficult, nor does it require
much time or labor to complete the work. Put all the cells in the
nursery and allow them to hatch and then after selecting the best queens
introduce them to nucleus colonies prepared as given on another page.
Sometimes there is difficulty in separating all the cells without
cutting into the side of a few of them. Excepting the time required to
patch them up, no great harm is done.

When the cells are ripe, and that is on the twelfth day from the day the
cells were started, remove from the hive, brush the bees from them and
at once take them into a warm room, providing the weather is cool, and
’tis most always cool in the months of May and June.

The knife used to separate the cells should be very thin, sharp and
warm. If a cell is cut into, just take a piece of thin foundation,
slightly warm it, place it over the aperture and at once smooth it down
with a warm knife so that it will be perfectly air-tight, if not so
done, the queen might not hatch out, and she certainly would not if she
is not within six hours of being ready to. If a patched cell is given to
a nucleus colony, and not made perfectly air-tight, the bees would
quickly destroy it. Bees will not accept any inferior work about
queen-cells. Perfection is their motto. Nevertheless, I sometimes think
bees lack in judgment in many things; such for instance as in destroying
a fine young queen when they seem badly in need of one. But they lack in
judgment very much when they use their stings to their own destruction.


I have always used tobacco smoke for light handling of bees, but more
particularly for introducing queens.

I shall state here that for general use in the apiary tobacco is not the
thing to burn. Doing light work and temporary use the tin pipe can be
made to work all right. As I am constantly working in my queen-rearing
apiary, I find tobacco smoke much the handiest, as well as the most

I do not wish any reader to think I recommend the filthy weed because I
am a tobacco fiend. Although I have used the vile stuff in my apiary
more than forty years, I have not been able to acquire the tobacco
habit. So it will be seen that in order for me to use tobacco about my
bees, I must have some special device to burn the stuff in.

I devised the pipe illustrated in fig. 13 many years ago. Body of pipe
is about 6 inches long × ⅞ in. in diameter and made of tin. At each end
is a wooden stopper, one a mouth piece, the other has a ¼ in. tin tube
running through it and projecting about an inch beyond the wood through
which the smoke is directed among the bees.

[Illustration: Figure 13]

The pipe is filled with fine, dry tobacco, and is lighted by placing the
small tube in the mouth and puffing away the same as any old smoker does
when he puts fire to his old T. D. When the pipe is well fired up, the
mouth piece is put in and all that is needed to break up a town meeting
is to blow the breath through the pipe.

Full colonies of bees can be handled by using tobacco smoke, but they do
not take kindly to it, and sometimes resent the insult with a vengeance.

A good bellows smoker filled with dry, rotten wood is much the best
thing to use when opening a hive of bees. But in introducing queens and
light work, in the apiary, the tin pipe will be found very valuable. Of
course no one would think of using tobacco when extracting. In putting
up queens I find the pipe very handy. It is held between the teeth, the
cage in the left hand and the queen and bees handled with the right
hand, as both hands are at liberty. Well, how handy!


If the queens are allowed to stay in the little hives late in the season
and long enough to fill the combs with brood, and the colonies are well
fed, there will be a fine lot of bees in the fall when all the queens
have been taken away, and they may be united and wintered in good

Make hives in two sections same as illustrated in fig. 8. These hives
are the same in every way as the little boxes excepting they are made to
take 13 combs instead of four combs. Use two sections in winter as this
gives sufficient capacity for wintering a large numbers of bees. In
three days after the queens are removed from the nuclei, they are in
condition to be safely united with little or no trouble. Get the winter
hive ready, give it a stand near the nucleus the queen is in that is to
be given the united colonies, and then take the queenless nuclei to that
stand and at once place bees, combs and all in the large hive. Put in as
much brood as possible, placing it in the center of the hive.

Now the tobacco pipe described above comes in here pretty handily. Just
give each small colony a puff of smoke before starting them, and all the
bees and queen will at once adapt themselves to their new home. Few if
any bees will return to the old stand. Feed the newly formed colonies
about 20 lbs. syrup to which several pounds of good honey has been added
to prevent granulation.

[Illustration: Above illustration gives a partial view of the author’s
queen-rearing apiary. The person on the left is S. M. Locke, former
editor of the American Apiculturist; on the right is the author. This
photo was taken in the summer of 1882. There has been but little change
in my apiary since the picture was made.]

When cold weather sets in, put the colonies in the cellar. In the spring
when placed on the stand, put on outside cases, fix them up warm and if
need be feed more syrup, and my word for it, you will have some fine
colonies with which to form early nuclei when needed.

I had nuclei enough in the fall of 1892 to form 21 strong colonies of
the kind above mentioned.


Much has been said in the various bee-papers as to how drones can best
be obtained and preserved the entire queen-rearing season. Here is how
it is done in the Bay State Apiary. When I have settled upon the colony
that it is most desirable to rear drones from, a full sheet of drone
comb is placed in the centre of the brood-nest. There being no drone
comb of any amount in the hive, the queen at once puts an egg in each
cell. This comb is allowed to remain in the colony till most of the
drone brood is capped, then it is removed and placed in a queenless
colony, or one that is caring for queen-cells, or has a lot of virgin
queens in the nursery. Another frame of drone comb is at once placed in
the same hive. The bees, finding they have no drones or drone-brood, at
once commence to rear another lot. This goes on all through the season.
I have found that one colony of bees will supply all the drones needed
for the entire queen-rearing season, or for many thousands of queens.

Please understand that when forage is cut off, the colony must be fed in
order to stimulate drone brood-rearing.

If the reader knows of any better way to get drones for queen-rearing or
for doing any of the things on the foregoing pages, by all means adopt
and practice them. I have given you methods that have been successful
many years.

                   WHEN, WHAT AND HOW TO FEED NUCLEI

I think I can save all who use my system of nuclei very much trouble by
giving instructions how to care for such colonies, and to make the
method a success, and prevent robbing in the apiary. Under no
circumstances ever feed anything but plain sugar syrup to the small
colonies. If you use honey your entire nucleus apiary will be ruined
within a few hours, providing there are any full colonies of bees near
them. Sugar syrup is all that is needed to keep the nuclei up to the
highest standard of prosperity.

There are three reasons why such small colonies should be fed as above
stated. 1. To keep them in food. 2. To prevent the bees from deserting
the hives and 3, to stimulate the bees and cause the queens to fly and
mate promptly. Now the last reason is very important. Unless these
little families of bees are fed as often as each five days, the bees
will desert the hive (swarm out), even though they have plenty of stores
and brood. Of course they will not “swarm out” unless there is a queen
to go with them.

Make the syrup as follows: Put 13 lbs. of granulated sugar in a 10 quart
bucket and add enough water to fill the receptacle. This is about
right—not too thin nor too heavy. See that all the sugar is dissolved
before using.

The feeder illustrated in fig. 15 is cone-shaped, made of tin and is
atmospheric in principle. When filled it is inverted; the opening
covered by a piece of thin cloth, the collar (a) put on to keep the
cloth in place, and when thus prepared the food will not leak out. An
aperture, an inch in diameter, is made in the cover of the hive about an
inch from the front edge; and as the apex of the feeder is but
seven-eighths of an inch in diameter, is held firmly in place, and no
amount of heavy wind will dislodge it.

[Illustration: Figure 14]

[Illustration: Figure 15]

The small quantity of syrup placed in the feeder is sufficient to
encourage the bees for about five days, when more food should be
supplied. It is understood, of course, that no feeding is necessary when
there is plenty of natural forage for the bees to gather. I know of no
other feeder, or system of feeding that can be applied to work so well
as the one above described.

Figure 14 represents one of the small nucleus hives with the cone-feeder
in position. As water during a rain may leak into the hive around the
feeder, it is always placed in the front part of the cover. Always place
the hive in such a position that the rear end is slightly elevated. This
keeps the water from running in at the entrance, and if any water gets
in at the top it quickly runs out.

The success of my nucleus system depends largely upon the manner of
feeding. These little miniature colonies are unlike large colonies. They
can only care for themselves when forage is abundant. Feed them
liberally and success will follow.

[Illustration: Figure 16]


The reader’s attention is called to the utility of the drone-trap in
queen-rearing. It’s a wonder to me how it is that any queen breeder can
produce queens that can be called _pure_ in the same apiary where there
are anywhere from ten to forty full colonies of bees sending out their
millions of drones every fine day throughout the season. It has always
been my practice to use the drones from only one colony for mating young
queens to. How else can any queen-breeder know by what strain of bees
his young queens are mated to? Drone-traps are kept at the entrance of
my hives the entire season, excepting on the hive from which the drones
are allowed to fly. I do not like a haphazard way of mating queens.
There is no way by which the queen breeder can have absolute control of
the fertilization of his queens as can be done by using the trap. If you
come into my apiary between May 20 and Oct. 1, you will find traps on
every hive in the yard. The trap in controlling swarming and catching
the thousands of useless drones has a world-wide reputation as all
practical bee-keepers well know.

[Illustration: Figure 17]

I regret very much to have to say that few if any of the supply dealers
are sending out queen-traps that are of any value. About all who use the
traps have an idea that they can improve its construction. Few of these
people realize that all those supposed improvements were tested in my
yard years before they ever saw the trap. Yet many of these useless and
needless improvements have been attached to the trap by those who are
selling them, rendering the trap almost worthless.

An improved queen and drone-trap is illustrated in fig. 16. This trap is
so constructed that no bees are destroyed by smothering. The trap does
not clog and the bees have a clear and easy way through it, in and out
of the hive. Three sides are covered by perforated metal, thus affording
abundance of ventilation to the hive at all times.

The trap prevents any bees from decamping either before or after a swarm
has issued or has been hived. When a swarm issues, all that need be done
is to move the hive the bees issue from to a new location, and put an
empty hive in its place; take the trap and place it at the entrance of
the new hive; the swarm soon returns, and while the bees are running in,
draw the top slide to release the queen, and she will enter with the
bees. Then stand back and see the swarm rush in pell-mell and take
possession of the hive. Whew! what fun on a hot day to have all this
work done without any effort on your part; no climbing trees, fretting,
worry or loss of bees.

Last season I saw a trap in Boston that was put up by one of the largest
supply dealers in the world. I was amazed when informed that any man who
ever kept bees would send out such a thing. The dealer who had it called
it the “Alley” trap. I said I invented the Alley trap, but I would not
own up as the inventor of a thing like the one in question.

I have not dealt in the traps for many years. But I am so disgusted by
what I have seen of the worthless things manufactured by other people, I
shall take up the manufacture of them again. Fig. 17 represents old
style trap.

                        BROOM FOR BRUSHING BEES

The first year I had bees I found that feathers were not just the thing
with which to brush bees, so a corn broom, such as is used for clothing
was utilized, but not until more than one-half the broom was cut out.
With a sharp knife cut out nearly two-thirds of the straw material just
under the binding. Then when the bees are brushed off the combs none
will be destroyed if any are half way in the cells.

This kind of a brush is called the “Coggswell broom.” I greatly mistake
if I did not sell the Coggswell Brothers of Groton, N. Y., the first
broom they ever used. The one I use and the so-called Coggswell brush
are quite different. There is stock enough in the Coggswell to make a
dozen of the kind used by me. See Fig. 18 for illustration of broom.

[Illustration: Figure 18]

                        POINTS IN QUEEN-REARING

                         TO INSERT A QUEEN-CELL

When a cell is introduced, it is not necessary, nor is it practical, to
cut the comb to insert the cell in, as recommended by some bee-keepers.
When a queen has been removed and the combs replaced in the hive, just
thrust your little finger down between the combs near the top-bars, and
thus make room for the cell and immediately place it in the opening
made. The bees will not destroy the cell if it contains a healthy queen.
If it is late in the season and the colony from which the queen is taken
is weak in numbers, it will be necessary to place the cell in the middle
of the cluster. Even in this case, you will not be obliged to do any
cutting as room can be made for the cell by pushing the finger through
one of the combs. Place the cell, small end downwards, in the aperture
and close the hive.


At the swarming season many bee-keepers have more or less queen-cells,
and sometimes young queens, they would like to preserve if possible to
do so and if proper fixtures were at hand to aid them in carrying out
their desires. At just that time several cages, such as are described on
a previous page and are used in the queen-nursery, would be the right
thing to have. Remove the cells from the hive at the proper time, place
them in the nursery-cages and after supplying each cage with food
sufficient for a week, or longer, place the nursery in some full colony,
according to directions given on another page in connection with the
description of the nursery. A much better way for the novice to dispose
of queen-cells would be to supersede old queens and at once insert the
queen-cells. If this seems too risky, dequeen the hive a few days before
the cells are matured, say on the fifth day after a swarm issues. This
method of dequeening would do away with the necessity of nucleus
colonies which one would be obliged to have in order to preserve young
queens until fertilized.

                        AGE AT WHICH QUEENS MATE

The readers of the different bee-periodicals have not failed to notice
the reports, from time to time, of queens being fertilized when two or
three days old.

I am inclined to think that all who make reports of queens being
fertilized when under five days old must be mistaken. I never knew such
a thing to happen in my apiary. Have had thousands of young queens take
the mating flight when but five days old, but never knew one to do so
when under that age.

The fact that I spend all my time during the queen-rearing season in the
yard among my nucleus colonies, and that every means is used to force
the young queens to fly and become fertile at the earliest moment
possible, should be sufficient to satisfy the reader that I am making no
wild statement in this matter.


The queen dealer is anxious to have his queens mate as soon as possible
after they arrive at the proper age. No special pains need be taken
while there is a flow of honey to force the queens to take a flight, as
they readily do so themselves. After the honey harvest is over, it is
quite another affair. At this time a young unfertile queen will not
leave the hive, unless encouraged to do so by _feeding_, when under ten
or twelve days old. Yet, if the weather is favorable, that is, if the
day is clear and warm, and but little wind, ninety-nine out of every
hundred queens can be forced to fly on the fifth day after they emerge
from the cell. Feeding for this purpose has been an important feature
for years in my apiary.


One who has any considerable experience in queen-rearing has no trouble
in distinguishing a fertile queen from one that is unfertile. In twelve
hours after a queen has mated there is a perceptible increase in her
size. Not only is her abdomen larger around, but it is also longer.
These conditions are noticeable in the early part of the season, but at
the last of September and during the month of October some other way of
judging and knowing whether or not a queen has been fertilized must be
adopted. While queens that are fertilized early in the season will at
once make preparations to deposit eggs, the late fertilized queens do
not. That is, the late fertilized queens will not as quickly increase in
size after becoming fertile, as they do earlier in the season. Now to
decide positively that a queen is fertile I have tested the matter in
this way: About half a pint of bees are taken from a colony having an
unfertile queen and allowed to run in the hive of the fertile one.

If the queen in the latter hive proves to be fertile, the strange bees
will not molest her; if unfertile, the bees introduced may at once ball
and eventually destroy her. This is a simple and quick way to test the
matter, and applies only to nucleus colonies, though it may be practiced
more or less successfully in full colonies.

Another way to decide whether or not a queen is fertile is to feed honey
for a day or so. If fertile she will deposit a few eggs, and lay while
the feeding is continued.


Young queens, as a rule, commence to lay from thirty-six to forty-eight
hours after they become fertile.

The time varies according to the season. During the honey harvest nearly
every young queen will commence to lay in about thirty-six hours after
mating. Later in the season, when no honey is being gathered, it will be
from forty-eight hours to three days.

I never have found a young queen laying when less than seven days old.

                       FERTILIZING IN CONFINEMENT

I believe there is not a well authenticated case recorded where a queen
was ever fertilized in confinement. Why should any one desire to have
queens fertilized in any other way than the one provided by nature? By
the use of the improved appliances for controlling and destroying
useless and worthless drones, it is an easy matter to have any and all
queens mated to any strain of drones desired.

A practical method of having queens fertilized in confinement will not
be devised for a long time to come. However, no one can tell what a day
may bring forth. There are a good many wise heads at work upon the
knotty questions connected with bee-culture.

                     RESPECT BEES SHOW THEIR QUEEN

When a fertile queen moves about the combs her subjects always open a
way for her to pass, and the bees seem to vie with each other in the
respect they show their ruler.

The virgin queen never has much respect shown her. The workers do not
even trouble themselves to get out of her way when she moves about the
cluster. She must run over the bees and get about the best she can.

When a hive is opened and combs removed, a virgin queen is pretty sure
to take wing, especially if the operation of removing the frames is not
performed quietly, or late in the day. However, there is no danger of
the queen being lost as she will fly but a short distance from the hive
and immediately return.


As stated on a previous page, some queen-cells will be built on the
combs that have brood in them. It will not be necessary to look the
combs over and destroy those cells if a _young_ queen is introduced. In
the course of twenty-four hours after the queen gets possession of the
combs, she will destroy the cells, that is, the queen will open them
near the base and sting the nymph, or nearly matured queen as the case
may be, and the bees will soon finish the work of destroying the cell,
and removing the dead queen. There are, however, exceptions to this
rule, and once in a while a young queen is permitted to “hatch out” and
take possession of the colony. In that case, the queen just introduced
is destroyed. This so seldom happens, and does not happen at all except
in cases where an _old_ queen is introduced, that it is not worth while
to spend time in looking the combs over for queen-cells.


I know of no better way for the novice to study the habits of the
honey-bee than can be done by an observation hive, such as is
illustrated in fig. 19. This hive has but one comb which is inserted
between two plates of glass. Anyone can make such a hive at small
expense. Get out a frame, groove for the glass to slide in, leaving an
inch and a quarter between the glass for the comb and frame. Wooden
covers are used to keep out the light. Arrange it so that the bees pass
to and from the hive under the bottom sash of a window, and in such a
way that no bees can enter the room.

When thus arranged there is no danger of anyone being stung while
observing the bees work. Here every movement of the colony and queen can
be seen, and all work from the laying of the egg to the sealed brood may
be seen at any time; how the bees remove pollen from their legs; how
they behave when deprived of their queen, and how they start and build a
queen-cell, store honey in the combs, etc.

[Illustration: Figure 19]

If the observation hive contains a small colony of bees and an unfertile
queen, it will be seen that the bees do not take the least notice of
her. Apparently she is of no more consequence before becoming fertile
than other bees in the hive; yet should she be removed from the colony,
the bees would soon miss her, and make as much fuss over her loss as
they would had she been a fertile queen. The fact that bees pay no
attention to a queen, is the best evidence that she is not fertile.

                       COMPARATIVE SIZE OF QUEENS

[Illustration: Figure 20]

[Illustration: Figure 21]

Figure 20 nicely and accurately represents a large, fine and
well-developed fertile queen bee. I have reared many queens equally as
large as the one illustrated in above cut.

Figure 21 is a good and life-size view of an unfertile queen. Such
queens vary much in size.

No one should judge of the size of a queen until she is given a chance
to develop in a full colony of bees.

Queens kept in small nucleus colonies never reach full development. They
must be given larger quarters in order to show to what size they will


Some years ago I accidentally discovered a process by which honey that
has once candied can be preserved in the liquid state for a long time.

It is my opinion that it is much the best plan to let all honey candy
and then liquify it. Possibly there are some kinds of honey that if
treated by the process below given, would not remain in the liquid state
only a short time. But for most kinds the treatment will be a success,
and preserve it many months.

Several years ago I received some honey in sixty-pound cans that was
nearly as hard as sugar. It was melted and put in half-pound bottles. To
keep it from candying again before I could dispose of it, the bottles
were placed on a shelf over the kitchen stove, where the temperature
would rise to 110 degrees during the day and would not go below 60
degrees at night. This same lot of honey stood zero weather for two
winters without going back.

The above is the entire process. It is heat for a long time that does
the business. Honey in large cans would need to be kept in a high
temperature at least a month, but the process will surely prevent it
from candying after it is once liquified.

Arrange the details of heating to suit your conditions. Large quantities
of honey can be kept in a room well up from the floor, and a good hot
fire running for a long time.

Steam heat, if convenient to use, is the proper thing. Small quantities
of honey can be treated about as mentioned in my own case.

                             TO THE READER

If the methods herein given for rearing queens is not made clear I shall
be glad at any time to give personal explanation. Later on I may issue a
“supplement” in which many of the parts of my system of queen-rearing
will be illustrated and more minutely explained. Send in the questions
and they shall receive attention.

                        THE QUEEN-REARING OUTFIT

There are certain necessary things used in queen-rearing which I can
supply at the prices given opposite each article named.

  The queen nursery, 35 cages, $1.50.

  The tin pipe for burning tobacco when introducing queens, 50 cents.

  Small hive, four frames, nailed ready for use, including
  cone-feeder, 50 cents.

  Small hive complete, including pint of bees, one best Adel breeding
  queen, $5.00.

  Same with select tested Adel queen, $4.00.

All the above, and one of the latest improved queen-traps, sent for
$9.00. These goods must go by express, as they are too large to go by

[Illustration: A successful swarm-catcher. Used in the Bay State Apiary
with great success many years. It consists of a brood-box in front of
the hive in connection with the queen-trap.]


                           The A. I. Root Co.

                             Medina, Ohio,

                   Makes a Specialty of Manufacturing

                         Bee=keepers’ Supplies

                              of All Kinds

 Bee=hives Frames

 Section Honey=boxes


 Honey and Wax Extractors


 Bee=comb Foundation

 Comb=Foundation Machines

 Comb=Foundation Fasteners

 Perforated Queen=Excluders

In fact, a full line of everything required by bee-keepers. The superior
excellence of these goods is such that they have a world-wide
reputation, and dealers handling them generally say:

                              Root’s Goods


                             Root’s Prices

For convenience of bee-keepers in obtaining supplies without sending
direct to factory and paying high freight charges, as well as suffering
long delays in transit, a number of dealers have established
distributing-points at many large centers, where goods are shipped from
factory in carload lots.

In a notice of this kind it is impossible to give a list of dealers that
will be accurate year after year. If you do not find their card in
GLEANINGS IN BEE CULTURE or other journals, send to us and we will give
you name of dealer located nearest you. In addition to twenty-five such
distributing-houses in United States, there are wholesale dealers in
Kingston, Jamaica; Havana, Cardenas, and Cienfuegos, Cuba; at various
points in Gt. Britain; also in Australia and New Zealand.

An illustrated catalog mailed free.

 The American
 Bee Journal


In order to become a progressive apiarist, and at the same time realize
the most money from your bees, you cannot afford to be without a good
bee-paper. THE AMERICAN BEE JOURNAL, established in 1861, is a 16-page
weekly, well illustrated, and fully up-to-date in everything pertaining
to bee-culture.

                            Its Departments

±Contributed Articles±

Discussions of Important Topics and Bee-Keeping Experiences—by experts.

±Convention Proceedings±—Just what this implies.

±Questions and Answers±

In charge of Dr. C. C. Miller, a bee-keeper of over 40 years’
experience, who answers all questions. Invaluable to beginners in

±Editorial Comments±—Just what this indicates.

±The Weekly Budget±

Being mainly personal items and miscellaneous matters of interest to

±Beedom Boiled Down±—Cream of bee-literature.

±The Afterthought±

This is in charge of Mr. E. E. Hasty, who reviews what has appeared in
recent numbers of the AMERICAN BEE JOURNAL, pointing out any errors and
commending the good things.

±Our Bee=Keeping Sisters±

Miss Emma M. Wilson (sister-in-law and assistant in the apiary of Dr. C.
C. Miller) has charge of this department. It is especially intended for
women bee-keepers, though its contents are just as helpful to the

±From Many Fields±

Short experiences and reports of the honey crop, conditions of bees,

Price of the BEE JOURNAL, one year, $1.00; or for $1.75 we will send the
BEE JOURNAL a year and a copy of Dr. Miller’s “Forty Years Among the
Bees,” book alone, $1.

Send for free Sample Copy, and Catalogue of Bee Supplies.

               ±GEORGE W. YORK & CO.,
                   144 & 146 E. Erie St., Chicago, Ill.±

   _We are the Largest Manufacturers of Bee-Keepers’ Supplies in the


Mondeng, Prop.]

                                                 Minneapolis, Minnesota.

    We have the Best Goods, the Lowest Prices, and the Best Shipping

                     OUR DANDY or SHALLOW DOVE HIVE

   With Super for Sections, 4 × 5 or 3⅝ × 5, is the Best for raising

                               COMB HONEY

We manufacture the Best

                             SWARM CATCHER

                       Up to the present time that is put on the market.

                 Our Improved Daisy Foundation Fastener

 Is in the lead of all others. If you want your Bees to winter well get

                              WINTER CASES

     They will winter Bees for a Century. You must remember that we

                     THE BEST BEE-KEEPERS’ SUPPLIES

         and we guarantee everything to be just as represented.

We also manufacture the finest Sections; they are the best on the
market. Our sections are made by an automatic section machine, which
will make 120,000 finished sections in ten hours.


                          TRANSCRIBER’S NOTES

 1. Fig. 16, rotated the image 180°.
 2. Silently corrected typographical errors and variations in spelling.
 3. Retained anachronistic, non-standard, and uncertain spellings as
 4. Enclosed italics font in _underscores_.
 5. Enclosed bold font in ±plus-minus signs±.

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Improved Queen-Rearing - or, How to Rear Large, Prolific, Long-Lived Queen Bees The - Result of Nearly Half a Century's Experience in Rearing - Queen Bees, Giving the Practical, Every-day Work of the - Queen-Rearing Apiary" ***

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