I have just done a spring inspection of one hive. This was the weakest of the over wintered hives, but still not bad. Outwardly they are active and bringing in pollen. This hive has more drones then the others.
During inspection, I only found capped drone cells, and some cells with larve. I did not see any eggs, nor was I able to locate the queen. I have queens ordered and they will be here this week and there are 9 other hives that are strong for eggs and brood.
Failing Queen or laying worker?
Can this hive be saved?
What is the best method?
Any help or info would be great. Thank you,
I would shake it out and start new with a couple of frames of emerging brood from the other strong hives and the new queen when she gets there.
That would keep your stronger hives from swarming and give your new queen a boost. If you put her in the old hive she would probably be killed by the laying workers, or if they still had a failing queen the hive it self would most likely reject her.
But then again, that is what I would do.
[This message has been edited by cpecka (edited April 14, 2002).]
How many frames is the cluster on?
I wouldn't shake the bees out. Take one frame of brood from 3-4 colonies and place over inner cover with center duck taped or double screen board on top of the weak colony. Provide an entrance by using a stick on the inner cover. When the queen starts laying, kill the old queen if there is one. And yank out the divider combining the two. This way you waste no bees.