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Susan W. Cobey

The New Jeweled Sting Hook For Instrumental Insemination Of Queen Bees

The technique of instrumental insemination enables control of honey bee mating. It is a critical component of genetic research and in the development and maintenance of selected stocks.

Improvements in instrumentation offer increased ease of use and choice in technique.

A new sting hook design is the ruby sting hook. Jeweler, Mark Jones modified the perforated hook, insetting a ruby ring, which is used to thread and lift the sting of the queen during the insemination process.


The ruby ring sting hook offers several practical advantages over the standard perforated hook. The ruby jewel is transparent so the sting can be seen through the ruby, beneath the hook. The shape of the ruby, beveled on the underside of the jewel, guides the sting into the hole to more easily thread the sting.  These two features make the ruby ring sting hook easier to use, especially for those just learning the technique. The hardness of the ruby, second to diamond, resists wear and maintains the specific hole size necessary to securely grip the sting.