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missing queen, drone brood everywhere

1554 Views 3 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  beedeetee
Hello...I'm having trouble with queens lately and am hoping someone could advise... I hived packaged bees on May 10th but without a live queen since she was dead on arrival. After receiving a mated queen that same day, I put the cage in (I never installed the expired queen's cage) but left the cork in on the candy end for a few days to give the bees some extra time to adjust. They were not happy and were balling the cage (attendants with queen). When I returned to removed the cork at the candy end 3 days later the bees were walking around on the cage and no longer biting. I returned 5 days later and the cage was empty so I assumed the queen was released, although I didn't see her. I went back 3 days ago to inspect the hive. Five frames were partially drawn out with some capped honey and pollen, and there is capped brood. The only problem is, it's all drone!!! I didn't see one single normal cell and there is no queen (I couldn't find her, no retinue, only workers crawling in and out of empty cells) I couldn't tell if there were multiple eggs or not, only bullets everywhere. Now I don't know what to do. Should I install another mated queen? Any advice or insight is greatly appreciated..
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Looks like you have no queen but laying workers. If you have access to brood give the hive a frame or two with bood in all stages. They might try to raise one on thier own. If you have laying workers they will try to kill any queen that you might try to introduce. A method that I recomend and use my self is the 2 inch square cage over the queen. Place the queen in this cage that is over sealed brood that is emerging, see
for a picture on how to do this. I hope this helps you and good luck.
Thanks Dan. This is my first hive so I don't have access to brood but will look into acquiring some. Also, thanks for the link!
It seems early to have laying workers. I have kept bees since the middle 80's and have only ever had one laying worker hive. It took it about 2 months to get to that point. I have had a lot of drone laying queens that I bought.:w:
In the laying worker hive the drone brood was scattered with one here or there. With drone laying queens, they normally seem grouped better. I would make another check for a queen.

I normally give her a couple of weeks to get on track and then replace her.
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