I'm a first year beekeeper and just installed my first hive of bees into a brand new hive in my backyard a few weeks ago. Everything has been going great: The queen was accepted, the bees have been foraging, and there have been pollen, eggs, larva, and capped brood located on about three of my frames.
This morning, I was looking out of a window of my house towards the beehive located about 20 yards away. I noticed a large cluster of bees on the landing pad, but didn't think anything of it other than they were getting ready to start their day. A couple hours later, I went out to watch the bees and noticed a rather large bee climbing on the grass near the hive. To my surprise, it was the queen. She was still alive, but seemed weakened. Not knowing what to do, I put her on the landing pad where the other bees started congregating around her. I threw on my veil, opened up the hive, and put her back in. While the hive was open, I decided to check a couple of the frames. They all looked really good and I didn't see any obvious supercedure cells. Didnt really notice any new eggs, but wasn't really looking for them and didn't have much light to work with anyway. I closed up the hive after about five minutes since it was around 60 and kind of drizzly this morning. I'm not feeling to optimistic about the queen making a recovery or being reintegrated back into the hive after apparently being rejected.
I plan on opening the hive back up in a couple of days to see if any eggs are being laid, if there are any more robust supercedure cells, and what the general health is of the hive. At that point I will determine whether I should order a new queen or not. Do you think this is the right course of action, or should I have a different approach?
Moreover, has this ever happened to anybody? Granted I'm a newbie, but this seems very unusual, especially since things were going to well to this point. I just happened to be in the right place on the right time to put her back in the hive, otherwise I may not have even known there was a problem for another week or so. Any thoughts?