Some background... about 3 or 4 weeks ago, I bought 2 nucs. I have them side by side about 4 feet apart.
A few days ago, I noticed a bunch of smaller, pale bees hanging out around one of the hives, but not going in. they were clinging to the underside of the screened bottom board, as well as on the grass, rocks etc. below and behind the hive. I would estimate numbers at 50-75 bees. What happened here? Were they sick and banished from the hive? Is this reverse prejudice in bees? Today, when I checked, there was no sign of such bees. I have not been able to inspect the hives for about a week, but traffic in and out of the hives seems normal. Should I be alarmed?
Between people moving hives, migratory beekeepers etc., there are always some lost bees of varying number looking for a home. Sometimes they hang out hoping to get invited in. Usually there are less in a group, but if a hive got moved somewhere close by there could be quite a few lost bees.
"3 0r 4 weeks ago" would also coincide with the time of chilled/malnutrition/stress brood. Moving the hive/nuc or exposing to cold, could cause different looking/sick/banished bees from the hive.
Sometimes nuc or hives that are bought also have different bees dumped together with perhaps a foriegn queen but I would guess you would of noticed this shortly after buying the nucs.