I hived our three pound package of bees May 27th.Today is Day 41 for our hive and I'm sorry to report that our bees are diminishing in numbers and have not expanded since Day 21 when there were three and a half combs with active bees on them. These combs may be a bit larger now but the bees are not moving on to the next top bar to expand. There is capped brood with a small number of drone cells on each of the four bars. They are no longer pulling comb but just tending what they have. I don't see any evidence that bees have hatched although there has been capped brood for at least 25 days. I found one dead pupa on Day 38 (about 15 - 16 days development according to charts I have consulted). The situation looks pretty hopeless. There is very little traffic at the entrance . . . easy to count one or two bees coming and going. I doubt if I have a thousand bees left . . . probably far fewer. It's like watching a dear friend succumb to a terminal illness.
I witnessed one alarming event on Day 4 which I found described exactly in Beekeeping for Dummies as a "robber attack". I didn't find the article until weeks after the event so the suggestions listed were of no help. I can't help but think that this was responsible for the current condition of my hive.
I look forward to comments and suggestions but ask you to remember that I am a new beekeeper so be gentle.
K Sumner in CT