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NWC Queen Bee

Reviews Average: 10

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Item # Queen14

Shipping: Pick Up on 24 Hour Notice

Price: $27.95 ea. PLEASE CALL 800-632-3379 TO PLACE YOUR ORDER

Non-Returnable Product

Quantity Price Discounts

$27.95 ea. PLEASE CALL 800-632-3379 TO PLACE YOUR ORDER


Please have your shipping/pick-up date in mind with the options listed below. The dates represent tentative shipment dates; your queen(s) will be shipped on or after the date you choose. Queens can be shipped quite reasonably by FedEx.  Up to 10 queens can go for $32 overnight or $22 by FedEx 2 day.  

The Carniolan honeybee, Apis mellifera carnica, is one of the two subspecies of the Western honeybee commonly used in American beekeeping. The other subspecies is the Italian bee. Carniolan bees originated in Carniola (which is now part of Slovenia) and surrounding regions. They are known for their gentle disposition, resistance to mite infection and their ability to rapidly control hive populations in response to nectar flows. Brood production increases rapidly in the spring in response to nectar flow. Brood production also decreases rapidly at the end of the honeyflow. These bees typically are very frugal with winter stores, successfully over wintering with lower honey consumption than Italian bees.

The New World Carniolan (NWC) was established in 1982 by Susan Colby and Tim Lawrence using diverse Carniolan stock from across the US and Canada. The stock was carefully evaluated and the most desirable colonies were incorporated into the breeding program. Each year queens are selected from the best colonies, instrumentally inseminated and the resultant queens are put into full size hives which are tested in the field. The best queens are used as breeder queens the following year.

An exciting recent development in the NWC program has been the importation of Carniolan bee semen into the US and the NWC program. Imports of honeybee genetics from Europe into the US has been prohibited for the last 90 years. Sue Colby and Steve Shephard got USDA permission to import Carniolan bee semen from outstanding colonies in Eastern Europe. This represents the first new genetic material imported into the US Carniolan population in the last 90 years. These European genetics have been incorporated into the NWC queens offered by Betterbee.

**Please do not order merchandise with your queens; queens must be invoiced separately from merchandise. 

On arrival:
  • Avoid pesticides in all forms
  • Avoid direct sunlight. Keep queens in the dark at temperatures between 65 and 80 degrees.
  • Install queens as soon as possible. Place a drop of clean water on the screen upon arrival and repeat twice daily until installed.
Installing Queens:
Entire books have been written on successful queen introduction. Here are some basic principals which will help increase your success.

Hives must be queenless to accept a new queen. In general the old queen should be removed for a minimum of 24 hours before installation.

There is debate over whether attendant bees should be removed from the queen cage before installation. If you are not comfortable handling the queen and removing attendants you should install the cage with attendant bees.

Push the cage edge into comb in the center of the brood nest. The screen side should be exposed so that the bees can acclimate to the new queen’s scent. The candy end of the cage must also be exposed so that the hive bees can release the queen Check for release of the queen 3 or 4 days after introduction. If the bees have not released the queen she can be released at this time.

  • Material: Honeybees - Apis Melifera carnica Queen, Three Hole Wooden Screened Cage, Honeybees - Apis mellifera carnica
  • Condition: New
  • Length: 3.1875
  • Width: 1.1875
  • Height: .875
  • Item Weight: .046 lb
  • Date Introduced by Betterbee, Inc.: 11/14/2012

Nicely-Mated Queen

I received my NWC queen a few weeks ago via overnight shipping, and she appears very nicely-mated. She's quite plump, and her brood pattern is nice and tight. My first bees are to emerge within days, and eventually replace my Italians in the hive fully. Time will tell how well the Carniolans will carry through the winter. I am giving five stars based on what I know and see in the hive so far.


Columbia, MD