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Ordering and Receiving Queens

Whether you are getting a new queen to replace a failing one, or to split a hive, it’s exciting! Keep in mind that most queen suppliers begin accepting orders January 1st of each year. If you are planning to requeen or split, get your order placed January 1st as most breeders sell out almost immediately for March-April ship dates. 

Order Queens Here!

If you are picking up your queen in person:

  1. Keep your queen out of direct sunlight. She can easily overheat in direct sun. 
  2. Keep your car warm, but not hot. A queen does fine at room temperature, (70s or low 80s) but too cold or too hot and she can be damaged. 
  3. Before leaving, make sure she is active- running, walking, buzzing, etc. 
  4. Install the queen as quickly as possible! Leaving her in your home longer than 1 day greatly increases the chance she will die. If there are attendant bees in the cage, it slightly increases the odds of acceptance if the attendants are removed. If you are uncomfortable removing them, then just leave them. If you do remove them, remove the cork or lid and slowly allow one worker out at a time in an enclosed room or inside a bee veil where you can capture the queen if she escapes. 
  5. Read “Installing a new queen in your hive”. 

If you are getting a queen shipped to you:

  1. Ask the post office to call you when she arrives. Riding around in a hot or cold delivery truck all day is not a good idea. If she is arriving via UPS, request a morning delivery if possible. 
  2. As soon as she arrives, open the package to ensure she is alive. Give her a drop of water and a drop of honey a few times during the day until you install her in the hive. Keep her at room temperature and out of direct sunlight in your home. 
  3. Follow step 4 above and read “Installing a new queen in your hive”.