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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
then i's beginning to occur to me(admittedly slowly) that the reason both hives seem to have stalled out a bit is because the brood hasn't hatched out yet.

Both hives are on their 22nd day of existence and I'm thinking that it was anywhere from 4-6 days for the queens to be released and to start laying. That would mean that the brood is still several days from being ready. And if the existing population is actually in a gradual decline until then well.....no more drawn comb?

They are bringing in a lot and are taking syrup, but both have stopped at 6 and 7 frames each, respectively.

Is this logical?

As an aside, I was up extemely early this morning and went out to sit with the bees, drink a cup, and watch the sunrise. And I noticed a lightly packed cluster of 30ish bees at each entrance. They were completely still and peaceful. It was very charming actually. I couldn't help but wonder if they were resting and thinking of past successes or the coming day's work. Or perhaps they were actually dreaming little private dreams of endless expanses of dandelion or wildflowers....a brief, yet private respite from the continual drive of the hive collective.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
A follow up question:

If they only draw what they can cover and have to "stall", waiting for new brood to hatch out, then what happens when the queen runs out of laying room?
 

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She will slow down and won't lay until they have enough bees to cover the eggs and larvae to keep them warm. You will generally see a down period as she begins to lay and they start ramping up adn the older bees die off. As the brood is emerging, you will notice the hive pick up quite a bit. I had a split doing the same thing, so I added a frame of capped brood to them. The brood started emerging today and I watched all kinds of orientation flights. i have seen one of my queens laying in 1/2 drawn frames before as well. they know what they are doing.
 

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"Both hives are on their 22nd day of existence "

So, as of today aproximately 1/2 of the original bees have died off. The hives are now at or about their miniimum population. Today the new brood starts hatching and the hive population will stay virtually level for another 3 weeks as the remaining originals die off. But, then you will have a hive full of new bees and the proper balance of nurse bees and they will begin to expand rapidly.

It's just simple math...
 
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