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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Charlestown, RI, USA
    Posts
    20

    Default drone-laying queen in last remaining hive-Now what?

    In a previous thread...I wrote how my only remaining hive swarmed on 6/24.

    A couple weeks ago I spotted a queen (confirmed by a couple other beekeepers) in the hive.

    A week ago I saw eggs in the hive- but multiple eggs per cell (1-2-3-4-5)...the number varied. It was suggested in the previous thread that I may have an inexperienced laying queen and she may be learning how to lay eggs. I have a couple experiences with laying workers...so I was hoping it was not this.

    Today I saw only drone brood and no worker brood. So- if there is a queen....she's useless...or it's laying workers This is my only remaining hive and I have no eggs/brood foundation to give to this hive.

    When should I shake out the bees and harvest the available honey? They will not make it through the winter and I just plan to start fresh next spring instead of continuing my frustrations and throwing more resources into my last failing hive.

    Thanks and I hope others are having better luck (or skill) than me!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Sherburne, MN, USA
    Posts
    61

    Default Re: drone-laying queen in last remaining hive-Now what?

    I does sound like you have laying workers. Where are the eggs inside the cell? On the bottom or the sides? Workers can't reach all the way down and will lay on the sides of the cell (you probably already know this since you've had this problem before). I would wait until after the fall flow to gather honey (if they last that long), in order to get as much as you could. Who knows? Maybe she'll start laying properly if you give her time. Good luck, and hopefully your next year will be better.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Big Stone Gap, VA
    Posts
    793

    Default Re: drone-laying queen in last remaining hive-Now what?

    Quote Originally Posted by bumble7 View Post
    When should I shake out the bees and harvest the available honey? They will not make it through the winter and I just plan to start fresh next spring instead of continuing my frustrations and throwing more resources into my last failing hive.
    If it where my last hive, I would try to get them through the winter. How many frames of honey and bees are we talking about? If it was two deeps of bees, I would replace the queen. On the other hand, if you only have two frames of resources it is a different matter. What do your local beek friends think?

    Shane

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Charlestown, RI, USA
    Posts
    20

    Default Re: drone-laying queen in last remaining hive-Now what?

    Thanks for the feedback. Well something has been laying now for a couple weeks. The eggs are on the bottom of the cell and not on the sides...but they are all drones.

    It is a 2 deep hive with a medium on top (but just drawn out foundation...not filled). The 2nd deep has about 6 frames or so half full of honey.

    If it's laying workers...if the queen is replaced, the workers will just kill her.

    If I do wait until the fall flow to gather the honey, should I continue to feed sugar solution...or will this be wasted resources/time/money?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Oakland, CA, USA
    Posts
    101

    Default Re: drone-laying queen in last remaining hive-Now what?

    Well, find the queen and it'll tell you. Do you have friends you can get a frame of brood from to keep laying workers from developing if they haven't already?

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