Hi all! Maybe someday I'll be smart enough to help somebody out once.
I went out to my one hive yesterday and did some stuff (changed out the FGMO cords and removed the grease patties, checked brood, bee apperance, measured cell sizes, sugared for mites and mite count, checked for honey and pollen and SHB) that is becoming routine after five times in six-and-a-half weeks. I found brood in various stages along with fifteen capped and being capped drone brood. The queen showed up and she's the same one they raised out of the emergency cells (same small black spot on abdomen at wing's edge and one lighter leg) they did right after I got them from the wall.
Well I also found a supercedure cell with uncapped queen larvae inside and she's pretty good sized to boot. The current queen isn't too bad on brood patterning, however she lays all over the place unless that cell has nectar/honey. Her mother, on the other hand, had an excellent textbook brood pattern. Right now I am considering letting them supercede (I think they will even if I try and stop them since it's their future they are deciding) and quickly build a three frame nuc to bank her with one frame of brood and one food and one empty foundationless frame. My thoughts are that the weather can normally be pretty mild here until the end of October and then it's all over the place until December. They are still working Trumpet Creeper and have started to bring in something else and lots of pollen.
If all goes well and the new queen works out the hive will have about a month to try and play catch up for the winter. If they can't catch up in time and the new queen is a keeper then I can always kill or leave the old queen and do a newspaper type combine to up the numbers. If the number of the hive are good I was thinking of building an observation hive and talk my wife into having it inside with an access tube to the outdoors.
I am concerned because my numbers are low any way and build up was even more delayed with the girls raising their current queen. Now with a new queen on the way I'm afraid it's too close to winter and I'm dooming them. On the other hand I could move both queens and order a laying queen and have hopefully three that can still be made into one if needed. What do you think?
I have done searches, am not altogether sure that any of them hit this subject. Also for some reason it only went back a few months. Thanks all.
"that is becoming routine after five times in six-and-a-half weeks."
No wonder they want to supercede! Why are you in the hive that often? You could have easily injured her with all that work.
I'd probably bank the old queen, in case and plan on recombining after the new queen is laying.
Tim may be right. Maybe she lays all over the place because you keep scaring her to another part of the hive and she starts laying there? And maybe they are superceding because they aren't happy with the distrubances.
Are the bees superceding because the queen has been injured or because the bees know that the queen is not enough strong to survive the winter?
Making autumnal nucleus is not easy, but is a fact in countries like Argentina. Usually you have many bees, perhaps too much, finishing the summer.
Have you think about recombining using a queen excluder between the two queens or nucleus?
UMMMM. I unintentionally I lied to you about the number of times. I have a top feeder and have filled it many times (they are not feeding now) and have been acually in the hive three times. I know this because I just checked my bee log that I fill in everytime I do something related to my colony. The three times were for initial after I got the hive from a bee call (they are feral) second time was for FGMO cords and to check if the new queen was alive and laying (she was all over the place then also)and if the small swarm that was fighting them was not in my hive and the third time was this last one to change cords, powder sugar them for mites and since they had been acting strange make sure I had brood. The queen was fine today I saw her for a moment on the landing board (my son pointed her out) before, I swear, the workers came and hustled her back in. Otherwise I've been dealing with the top feeder and cleaning ant corpses out when it starts to funk, since I have to remove it to clean it I do disturb them and I guess I'll have to find another way to feed them when they need it. Right now they are bringing in all kinds of pollen and nectar. If I'm getting in too much I apologize for my inexperience. I just hope I'm not running them off. I'm just glad I have a log that I keep up so I can call myself a liar when I need to. I never thought it would come in handy, and it reminded me of things I had forgotten all about.
Whooaa! I just read my last entry. Wimpy. Not my intent. Everytime I open that top for what ever reason I consider it getting into the hive.
David again. Thanks for the input.
If your queen was on the landing board she sounds a bit flighty. Not necessarily a bad thing, but it's likely she runs somewhere everytime you open up and then starts laying there. [img]smile.gif[/img]
I'm not sure how fast she is supposed to move , but she does get around pretty good. I haven't seen here move like the ones shown on Dr, Delaplanes videos or the one time I saw another queen in another hive. I just thought she was normal. David
Normal is a pretty wide range from ignoring you and continuing to lay to running for the next frame at top speed.