Don't you just hate it when you can't leave well enough alone and you end up screwing things up?
Yesterday it was 68 degrees in MD so I decided to make one last inspection of my hives. I also have one hive with an unmarked queen and decided to use my handy dandy new queen grabber and marking kit.
I found the queen quickly, grabbed her easily, got her into the tube with the sponge tipped plunger. Then, suddenly distracted, I accidently press the plunger just a little too hard against the screen.
The queen at first appeared okay, but when I put her in the hive one of her back legs seem off kilter and she was having trouble holding onto the vertical comb. Aarrrgggh!!
Now, my questions: if she dies or stops laying, will this hive not survive the winter? Is it too late/cold for them to raise a new queen?
Do honey bee queens regenerate lost limbs?
Finally, my intention is to wait 5 days and then go in and see if things are okay. If I see eggs, I'll leave it, but if not should I order a new queen? Are any still available this late in the fall?
It's pretty late for here. Not a lot of drones left, but there are a few. One of mine recently raised a queen, but I won't know if she's mated until spring (or a warm day in February) because they already quit laying for the season. But they might raise one. If you can buy one that might be a good solution.
Queens are both more fragile than you might think and more resilient than you might think. I've had them with a bum back leg that layed well for a couple of years.