I had 2 package hives started May 24th. Thank God everyone says to start with 2 hives or I would be giving up about now. North hive doing great from the beginning. Textbook except I wish they would draw out a few more frames on the top box (only two drawn out after a month).
The other hive has been a problem since I hived it. Queen dead two weeks after hiving. Got new queen. Very poor layer. Only 5 frames in one box every drawn out. Fed pollen and syrup religiously and they took it. No further progress for a month. Inspected again today. Spotty capped brood, no larva and no eggs. Looked very carefully. No queen either, but 4 capped queen cells. I am getting to the point of just letting the hive go. Certainly not up to buying a 3rd queen.
I feel like I've spent a small fortune battling SHB, and feedings without getting anywhere. Literally $100 on sugar alone. Was getting great pleasure from it, but now seems like a dreading frustration to even inspect it. Anyone else ever feel this way? Should I just let it go and package again next spring? I fully expect with my luck to have a laying worker hive before a new hatched queen can get going.
Other hive is a pleasure working with. Have given serious thought about putting the 5 frames of the poor hive in with the 1st hive, replacing the undrawn frames with the drawn frames of the sad hive in the 2nd box.
May give it 2 more weeks to see if the sad hive produces a queen that is any good. Alabama doesn't get that cold until late Nov/Dec.