Factors affecting the quality of mated honey bee queens stored for different periods in queen-right bank colonies. Effect of cage level and position on holding frame

The effect of storage cage level (upper or lower) and its position (peripheral or middle positions) on weight, survival rate and egg laying capacity of honey bee queens stored in queen-right colonies for various storage periods was studied. Storing mated queens in this way had a significant effect on their weight after 75 days of storage. The means of queen weight were 174.9 and 167.4 mg for the upper and lower strips, respectively showing the superiority of the upper one. A significant increase in the mean weight of queens stored in the middle position (172.5 mg) was noticed comparing to peripheral ones (169.8 mg). All the stored queens had significantly greater weight than their original weight before storage during the different periods of experiment. There were significant differences in the survival rate of mated queens stored in different levels, as the mean survival rate of queens stored in the upper strip (69.3%) was higher than the survival rate of mated queens stored in the lower one (60.1%). The queens stored in middle position attained a significantly higher survival rate (70.7%), than those stored in peripheral ones (58.7%).The overall survival rate was negatively influenced with the increase of storing period. In respect of egg laying capacity measured as sealed worker brood area, queens stored for 45 days produced a significantly larger sealed brood area (875.5 cm2) than that produced by queens stored for 75 days (843.2 cm2).