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B-Keeping Glossary - Bee-keeping terms
Category: Agriculture and Industry > Bee-keeping
Date & country: 23/03/2011, uk
Words: 275


Queen
Sexually developed female bee. The mother of all bees in the colony. Queen egg to adult development period is 16 days.

Queen breeder
A beekeeper specializing in the breeding and production of queens, usually for commercial purposes; often breeding for selective traits.

Queen cage
Small wooden and wire, or plastic, cage used to ship queens; usually with up to 6-8 attendant bees; also used to release them quietly into cluster.

Queen cage candy
A dough made from powdered sugar and invert sugar syrup to be used as bee-edible plug in queen cage, delaying release of queen to increase acceptance.

Queen cell
A special cell; resembling a peanut shell in shape, in which a queen is reared and develops.

Queen cup
The beginning of a queen cell. If an egg is placed in the cup, bees needing a queen will add wax to the cup increasing its size and shape during development. As the egg hatches and larva grows, bees fill the cup with royal jelly for the larva to feed on.

Queen excluder
Device usually made of zinc or wire grid allowing worker bees to pass through, restricting queens and drones due to spacing of .163 to .167 inches between wires or openings. Placed over brood chamber to prevent queen from laying eggs in honey supers (mixing brood with harvestable honey).

Queen marking
(See Marked queen).

Queen piping
A distinctive noise made by queens (old, pre-emerged and newly emerged), especially at times of swarming preparation or queen rearing. Piping is thought to be done in an effort to seek out other queens in the colony, and is recognized by sharp "ze-e-e-ep, ze-e-ep, ze-ep, zeep" or "tee-tee-tee-tee" sounds (Dadant & Sons - The Hive and the Honey Bee). Sounds from queens still in queen cells usua...

Queen rearing
Producing queens.

Queen substance
Material produced from at least three glands in body of queen; has strong effect on colony behavior; serves to control social order.

Queenless
Without a queen.

Queenright
With queen.

Rendering wax
Melting old combs and wax cappings to remove refuse and partially refine the beeswax. May be melted in a solar wax melter or put through a wax press.

Requeening
A procedure where one queen (usually older) in a colony is replaced with another queen (usually younger).

Reversing
A procedure where hive bodies are switched, with the top hive body placed under the original lower hive body containing little or no brood. Allows brood area to continue upward in natural expansion, and relieves congestion; usually done in spring as often as needed every few weeks.

Ripe honey
Honey from which bees have evaporated sufficient moisture so that it contains no more than 18.6 percent water.

Robber bee
A field bee, usually elder, that is persistent in trying to rob honey stores from other hives. Robber bees are often shiny and blacker than other field bees due to their age (wear and tear), and use "sneaky" tactics to gain entrance to hives in its effort to rob.

Robbing
Bees of one hive taking honey from another, or exposed source of honey (extracted supers). Robbing behavior is usually aggressive and can result in fighting and death of robbing bees.

Royal jelly
Pharyngial glandular food, very high in nutrition, secreted by young worker bees and placed in cells for larval food. Worker and drone bee larvae are limited in amount of royal jelly fed, queen larvae are not.

Sacbrood
Minor disease of bees caused by filterable virus. Conditions look similar to foulbrood, but usually with fewer affected brood cells in spotty locations in brood nest, and occurs predominantly in spring. The larval remains, unlike the foulbrood diseases, do not rot away. Instead, they lay on the bottom of the cell, with the skin turning leathery and holding the water content of the larva, hence the...

Sealed brood
(See Capped brood).

Self-pollination
Transfer of pollen from male to female element within same flower.

Septicemia
Usually minor disease of adult bees caused by Pseudomonas apiseptica (Burnside).

Shake
The technique of shaking bees from frames of comb to remove bees; often used by package bee suppliers to shake bees into shipping cage funnels. Also used when transferring frames of brood from one colony to another.

Shallow super
A super shallower than a deep super; usually 5 11/16 inches in depth.

Skep
Beehive made of woven straw. Used in the past, though abandoned in most areas in favor of removable-frame hives. Outlawed in many countries as brood can not be easily inspected for disease.

Small hive beetle
Pest originally from South Africa, Aethina tumida is about one third the size of a worker bee. Damage to honeycomb caused by larvae feeding on pollen; also defecation in honey, causing fermentation. Larvae distinguished from wax moth (Galleria mellonella) larvae by six distinct and rather large legs on frontal end versus wax moth's uniform-sized prolegs. Larvae leave hive to pupate in soil. Newly...

Smoke
The act of blowing smoke into a beehive to reduce bee's defensive stinging behavior. Bees lightly "smoked" proceed to gorge themselves with honey. This natural instinct allows them to abscond from a burning hive if needed (and able) and begin a new hive at an alternate location. With honey stomachs filled, both food source and fuel for beeswax secretion is readied. Smoke also dulls alarm odor s...

Smoker
Metal canister device with nozzle and bellows used to blow cool smoke from smoldering material on bees. Smoker material ranges from burlap, cardboard, pine needles, sumac pods, rotted wood or other natural substances with good smoldering properties. (Reference Smoke).

Solar wax melter
Glass-covered box in which wax combs are melted by sun's rays (solar heat) and wax is recovered (strained) in cake form.

Spermatheca
Small sac-like area in queen in which drone's sperms are stored.

Spermatozoa
Male reproductive cells.

Spiracles
External openings of tracheae.

Splitting
The technique of separating or "splitting" a colony of bees into two or more hive bodies or nucs; usually leaving the queenless colony to raise a new queen from existing eggs, or requeening manually by providing a queen cell or caged queen.

Spun Honey
Honey that has been "seeded" with very fine honey crystals and stirred occasionally to hasten uniform crystallization throughout; also creamed honey, whipped honey. Spun honey is usually marketed along with liquid honey on store shelves. (Reference Granulated honey).

Spur Embedder
A tool comprised of a grooved brass wheel, or spur, and mounted on a handle; used to embed support wiring in frames into beeswax foundation.

Stamen
Male part of flower on which pollen-producing anthers are borne.

Sticky board
Used on floor of hive bottom board to trap and hold Varroa mites that have fallen off bees; a thin device usually made from 8x8 mesh wire screening mounted on 3/16 - 3/8 inch high rails, and placed over wax paper or poster board material that has been sprayed with aerosol non-stick cooking oil. Mites fall through wire mesh and stick to surface of paper or poster board, prohibiting crawling and re-...

Stigma
Receptive part of style where pollen germinates.

Sting
Modified ovipositor of female Hymenoptera developed into organ of defense.

Stonebrood
A disease in which the causative fungus, Aspergillus flavus attacks and kills bees in larval stage. Deceased brood, referred to as "mummies", are solid and green in appearance; green growth is powdery. Symptoms are similar, but quite different from, Chalkbrood. No treatment is usually necessary.

Streptococcus pluton (White)
Causative agent of European foulbrood.

Sucrose
Cane sugar; main solid ingredient of many nectars before inversion into other sugars by enzymes (predominantly invertase). (Also reference Glucose and Fructose).

Super
Extra division of hive used for honey storage above the brood chambers.

Supersedure
The natural replacement of one queen by another while first is still alive (without swarming).

Supersedure cell
Queen cell constructed by worker bees in preparation for queen supersedure; usually located on the face of brood comb; constructed fewer in number than those of swarm cells (anywhere from about three to eight), and generally lighter in color.

Swarm
Natural division of colony of bees. A number of worker bees and a queen (usually the old one) that leave the hive to establish a new colony. (Also reference Afterswarm and Primary swarm).

Swarm cell
Queen cell constructed by worker bees in preparation for swarming; usually located on the bottom and lower edges of brood comb; constructed greater in number than those of supersedure cells (anywhere from about six to twenty or more), and generally darker in color.

Tarsus
Fifth segment of bee leg.

Telescoping cover
A hive cover, used with an inner cover, that extends downward a few inches on all four sides of a hive.

Terramycin
Trade name of antibiotic (oxytetracycline) used to prevent or treat foulbrood diseases (especially American foulbrood). Usually mixed with powdered sugar and sprinkled on tops of brood frames in hive body, or mixed in with extender patties.

Thorax
Mid-part, or second region, of bee to which wings and legs are attached.

Tinning
The act of banging on a tin pot or pan (hence "tinning") underneath a flying swarm that was done in the past and once thought (falsely) to bring the swarm down to earth, enabling their capture.

Top supering
The practice of placing empty honey supers on top of others already on the hive. The bee's natural instinct is to use topmost combs for evaporating and processing nectar during honey flows, moving honey ready to be sealed downward to available comb. (Also reference Bottom supering).

Tracheae
Breathing tubes of insects; tracheae open into the spiracles on the abdomen's surface.

Tracheal mite
(See Acarapis woodi).

Transition cell
Cells of smaller or larger size than worker cells, and smaller than drone cell size; usually found where worker cells merge with drone cell areas on brood comb.

Travel stain
Darkened or stained surface of capped honey due to bees walking on comb and tracking pollen and/or propolis over surface.

Uncapping knife
Knife or flat blade used to remove honeycomb cell caps so honey can be extracted. Many knife models heated with electricity or steam to increase efficiency.

Uncapping tank
A receptacle or tank manufactured to provide area for uncapping frames of honeycomb, catching cappings on filter or grid, allowing for drainage. Usually provides for uncapped frames to hang in tank area until ready for insertion in extractor.

Unite
Combine one honey bee colony with another.

Unsealed brood
Brood in egg and larval stages only.

Varroa jacobsoni
A mite that originally was a parasite on the small Asian honey bee (Apis cerana), but has spread its presence to many other countries, including the U.S. The mites lay eggs in developing larva cells, preferably drone, which later hatch and feed on the blood of pupae within cells, or under the abdominal segments on either side of the wax glands of adult bees. Can be seen with naked eye. Honey bees ...

Virgin queen
Unmated queen.

Wax glands
Four pairs of glands on the underside of worker bee abdomen from which wax is secreted after bee has been gorged with honey. Wax glands usually degenerate into a flat layer of epidermis cells as wax-forming period in worker bee subsides.

Wax moth
Lepidopterous insect whose larvae feed on pollen and honey bee detritus, destroying wax combs in the process and causing considerable damage to stored frames of combs (including wooden hive parts of neglected hives). Stored or infested combs are typically fumigated with Paradichlorobenzene to rid them of wax moth larvae and eggs.

Weeping
A description applied to honeycomb that has damage, especially to cappings, leaking small amounts of honey across the face of the comb.

Winter cluster
Closely packed colony of bees in winter.

Wired foundation
Beeswax foundation with vertical wires embedded for increased strength.

Wired frames
Frames with horizontal wires strung taught through endbars to hold sheets of foundation in place, preventing sagging of wax foundation and increasing strength of drawn comb.

Wiring
Installing tinned wire in frames as support for combs.

Worker bee
Sexually underdeveloped female bee. Caste of colony responsible for maintaining hive, collecting food and raising young. Worker egg to adult development period is 21 days.

Worker cell
Comb cells measuring about 5 cells per linear inch, and in which worker bees are reared. Honey and pollen is also usually stored in worker cell-size comb.

Worker egg
Fertilized (female) bee egg.