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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Bartow, Georiga, USA
    Posts
    49

    Default Possibly no queen or virgin?

    Last Tuesday I caught a swarm of bees at the park, since there were 5 base ball games going on, they were drawing a crowd, and evening was coming on quick I tried to get it done quickly. I got them in a nuc, closed them up and kept them in my garage overnight. The next day I transported them about 20-25 miles to where I had an empty hive set up. I got them hived without a problem gave them some syrup to start building up on. I did a quick inspection yesterday and they are building comb but I didnt see the queen, all the comb I saw had the syrup in it. Will they stick around if they dont have a queen and just slowly die off if they are far from their original hive? Could she still be a virgin, not laying yet, and difficult to see?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Calhoun Co, Texas, USA
    Posts
    1,310

    Default Re: Possibly no queen or virgin?

    If they don't have a queen, they're 99.5% likely NOT to leave...there's no more hope for them anywhere else, so they'll just stick around where they are.
    If they DO have a queen, she may be a virgin, or she may not be laying many eggs yet; I'd give her another 7-10 days before getting concerned, and then be sure to look for EGGS, not just open brood. If, after 2.5weeks in the new hive, there are still no eggs, no brood, and no sighting of a queen, it might be time to purchase an "emergency" queen from somewhere; but I don't think you're all that likely to need it with a swarm.
    I've attached a couple pics of a comb that I thought only had a little honey+pollen in it once...'til I looked at it in better light & saw that it was STUFFED with eggs.....



    (click on images to view more magnified)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Bartow, Georiga, USA
    Posts
    49

    Default Re: Possibly no queen or virgin?

    If they did NOT have a queen would they still be busy foraging and building up or would they just hanging out in the hive cuz they seemed very busy coming and going when I checked on them yesterday.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Calhoun Co, Texas, USA
    Posts
    1,310

    Default Re: Possibly no queen or virgin?

    If they're busily working, and they seem "content," rather than buzzing loudly and sounding "angry" then they most likely are not queenless in my experience, however limited that may be.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Fort Wayne, IN
    Posts
    919

    Default Re: Possibly no queen or virgin?

    Give them a couple of weeks and if in doubt add a frame of eggs to see if they initiate a queen cell.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Bartow, Georiga, USA
    Posts
    49

    Default Re: Possibly no queen or virgin?

    Thank you Robherc.
    Hilreal, thats what I am planning on doing. If the weather permits I will check them next Wednsday.

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