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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Eugene, Or
    Posts
    97

    Default Too Late for a new Queen?

    My bees swarmed (I think judging from a reduction in bees about a 3 weeks ago). I just opened it up and there are two boxes stuffed full of honey and the third is half full of honey. I did not see any capped brood or eggs in the open comb. No swarm cells noted either. Im not sure they have a queen . I was thinking of introducing a comb from my other warre that has capped brood (probably uncapped as well - I did not look too close. The problem with this is that I saw wax moths and mites (they have always had a few mites) on a few bees during the inspection of the queen-right hive...i suspect this one wont survive the winter.

    Is it too late to introduce a new mated queen (or even buy one this late in the year?)? Should I just wait and see what happens? (I dont want to lose all the honey to robbers if they are in fact slowly dying away). I really liked this hives genetics (wild, small dark colored bees) so Im kinda bummed right now. I did see one hatching bee but she might be one of the last from the possibly swarmed queen.

    Opinions?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Little Rock, AR
    Posts
    1

    Default Re: Too Late for a new Queen?

    Having been in a similar situation and did nothing. My hive developed a laying worker and ultimately DID get robbed out and I eventually combined with my stronger hive.

    My advice is push it down to 1 "good solid deep" with 3-4 frames of honey, either extract or redistribute the rest....and plan on reQueening that deep. If you need a Queen, reQueen it. If population is down and they are in 2-3 deeps with tons of honey, there is little possibility for it to strengthen enough to a) use all that room again and more importantly b) have enough population to defend from robbers or parasites. I've errored before by giving too much room. There is strength in good population in the right available space. If drawn comb with resources and not enough bees to cover/protect it, it's a loss.

    Best of Luck!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, USA
    Posts
    5,408

    Default Re: Too Late for a new Queen?

    I suppose it depends on where you are, as many things do, location is a very critical factor in beekeeping.

    Here I'm still raising queens and nucs (and will likely continue doing so, continuously), while many other locations in the U.S.A. are going into a period of 'waiting', before again engaging in those processes/activities.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
    Joseph Clemens -- Website Under Constructioni

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Fort Worth, TX, USA
    Posts
    1,779

    Default Re: Too Late for a new Queen?

    Here my perpetually queenless hot hive has a fresh new laying queen who I first set eyes on this morning, and there was no brood except the frame I added, in that hive after the italian was tossed, for 3 weeks. (I suspected she existed when my marked Italian queen was ejected from the hive after having been accepted and laying)

    Not all hives go laying worker. Given fresh eggs bees will make a queen. That's where mine came from. I bought the italian because I thought I had failed and didn't see the hidden queen cup in the foundationless frame's center.
    Time to be a gypsy again, 2014 will be my prep year, my bees want a better area with actual rainfall.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Sacramento,California,USA
    Posts
    3,829

    Default Re: Too Late for a new Queen?

    And it could be they have a freshly mated queen and ready to lay any day now, from the timing you say.
    “When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” – John Muir

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Eugene, Or
    Posts
    97

    Default Re: Too Late for a new Queen?

    The more reading Im doing the more Im seeing people jumping the gun on thinking the hive is queenless. Thinking about it, I think I noticed a big reduction in workers about 3 weeks ago. Making me think they swarmed and I missed it. Im going to give them another week, disassemble the hive again and look for eggs. Not sure what it means but they were fairly mellow during the winter stores inspection yesterday. Lots of bees inside and around, just significantly less then in August. Fingers crossed............

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