honey harvest if hive swarmed in May?
Hi-I've gone through the old threads to see if I could find the answer to my question but no luck.
My first hive (Warre) was installed in March 2015 and did really well, got through the winter having used almost none of the candy I put in just in case. On May 15th this year they swarmed. I was not prepared and they got away. The remaining hive is up to 4 boxes, the bottom one is completely empty. The top box has a window and I can see that it is mostly capped honey, but I can't see the bottom of the combs. The complication is that I know from opening it up last year and trying to open it up a couple weeks after the swarm, that they built the comb in the second box diagonally. And the combs from the top box are all attached to the top bars in the second box. I used the cheese wire to detach the top box (back in June)but when I tried to remove the top bars (to look for evidence of a queen) the comb just fell apart. The question is....is it worth trying to go in there to check for brood in the top box (so I can harvest) or is there no point since they swarmed in May (and I saw through the window they had taken a lot of honey with them just after the swarm). They are still on lots of wingstem forage. I am in west central Virginia close to the Blue Ridge; Day time temps are in the 80's. ALSO how do I know they have enough stores in the second box for the winter (assuming the top box has no brood).
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