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  1. #1
    Dzug Guest

    Post

    Hello all and thanks in advance for your responses!

    I had two hives die over the winter, presumeably from mites. I ordered two packages of bees to replace them and installed them on May 7th.

    I placed the bees in hives consisting of two medium supers of mostly drawn out frames. I did this because I had nowhere to store extra supers with honey in them and if I reduced the hive to one super, it would be full of honey and there wouldn't be room for brood. So, I distributed the honey on the sides and placed drawn comb in the center.

    I inspected the hives tonight and found the queen in one hive and three frames of brood in various stages of development. In the other hive, I found only one frame of brood in various stages and could not find a queen. I will look again tomorrow.

    I'm thinking that there is probably a queen and that I just couldn't find her or at least there was a queen because there are almost no drones cells being produced. All the capped cells appear to be worker cells. Does this theory hold any water?

    Also, I rotated the supers to get the queen to use both supers. Good idea?

    Thank you,

    Doug

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Julian, NC, USA
    Posts
    252
    Doug:
    Brood is a good sign, but you really need to be looking for eggs to determine if the queen has recently been there. As long as you see eggs, dont worry about the queen.
    All colonies will produce some drones. Because the foundation used has the imprint of a worker cell, you will produce less drones than in a feral hive situation.
    You needn't worry about reversing supers to get the queen used to them. She will use the space required to achieve what she wants to. Super reversing is a more common practice for winter/spring management to ensure the queen moves up and has plenty of laying space.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,121

    Post

    There are really only two reasons to rotate. In a crowded brood nest during swarm season it forces the bees to rearrange the brood nest and this distracts them from swarming. I don't do this.

    The other reason is that the bottom box is empty (usually first thing in the spring) and the top box is getting full of brood and bees. Reversing at a time like this gives the queen some space and gets them to use the empty box.

    I know some people (using the first theory) reverse constanly all spring. I think it's too much work for me and too much work for the bees to rearrange everything. But I'm sure it also discourages swarming in the confusion. Personally I also think it discourages production.

  4. #4
    Dzug Guest

    Post

    are you saying I should leave them alone or put them back the way they were?

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