Last week, at the 3 week mark, there were no brood that I could see (early, I know, but really wanted to see how things were going in there). There were SO many bees in that section even though they had a deep and medium. I ended up moving the queenright boxes from the vertical split to a different hive stand and bottom board because my vertical stack was a but much at that point, but I kept the queenless boxes on the same site with the entrance facing the same direction (to the back, per the instructions from the article). I added a queen excluder and an extra super to give them some more space.
Today is 4 weeks post. There are still SO many bees and SO many drones! Like the hive is exploding with bees, despite no new bees having hatched from those boxes (drift from the queenright hive, Iím assuming?). Still no brood to be seen. There were so many bees it would have been easy to miss, but no queen seen either. I did, however, see a fair number of empty queen cells during todayís more thorough inspection. I'm in Ohio and we have had a LOT of rain in the past two weeks along with some unseasonable cold weather, so not sure if that should be cause for extra concern in that queen mating (and returning).
When should I be concerned? Should I move a frame of brood over from my queen right box (and when you do this, do you shake all the bees off or leave the nurse bees on?)? I had some mated queens reserved from a queen producer who breeds for mite resistance, and I was thinking these would be available early May but it nows looks like maybe early to mid-June. That would probably be my earliest chance for a mated queen. Should I just wait it out and check again in a week (or sooner)? Or anything else I should be doing or planning for?
I would not be concerned for another 10 days. The soonest I have ever found eggs is 22 days after making bees queenless; usually near a month because I don't start to find them until I see milk brood (cells with newest larvae with a bit of feed in them).
The directions you say you followed refers to a division board with a single layer of screen on one side. You get more complete isolation from queen pheremones etc., with double screen so the bees above and below cannot exchange by sharing feed and swapping bubble gum. I dont know whether the single screen would tend to delay the start of queen cell building.
The lousy weather probably delayed mating so I would suggest giving some additional time allowance for that factor too.
Last edited by crofter; 05-09-2017 at 07:42 AM.