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Short history and tl;dr:
I had a late March split that was booming around July 1st, so I made a split out of the hive, but accidentally took the queen into the nuc and left behind a booming 3 box hive.

The original queen and her hive are now a proper hive, but since then, I've done my usual and no fail method (before this...) of giving them 14 days to hatch her, and then 3-7 days before I put a frame in from the parent hive of eggs so that they can give another go if something is wrong. Normally I continue with once a week, a single frame of brood until the hive gets a laying queen again. Usually they just use the new brood to keep the hive freshly running-- only a couple times has something happened (probably a queen not coming back from mating flights) where they've had to take advantage of the fresh eggs. I've done 9 years of beekeeping doing this and requeening usually goes great.

Until this time. The split has consistently lost the queens they are making and start making a new set of queen cells as soon as I give them new eggs-- now 4 times in a row.
They are definitely capping cells-- the first time, at least 15, the second time 9, the third time 6 (which I reduced to 4), and now 5 (which I accidentally reduced to 3 taking the frame out-- it's getting late so I decided to newspaper combine 1/4 boxes with the parent hive before this queen hatches)-- something is weird here.

There are no signs of laying workers, the brood, all but one time, has been from their mother hive, and they are capping these queen cells. The ones I've broken have been healthy, developing queens. The genetics are new to me-- Carnie black bees and I love them greatly-- the entire 4 boxes is made of honey now for the most part because of the months of queenlessness, but I'd rather have a healthy hive going into winter than honey.

What is going wrong here? What are recommendations? I'd order a new queen or see about a queen from the source of the split, but I'm afraid if even the queens they are making aren't to snuff, I'd just be throwing good money after bad, if they won't even accept queens they are growing. Do I just keep newspaper-combining them box by box or am I risking my existing queen?
 

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they may have a non laying queen, that is killing the newly hatched ones.

Shake the hive thru an excluder box, to be sure.
then either intro a new queen or add it to a queen rite smaller hive.

lots of ways to combine. if I had your issue I would news paper combine, only 1 box at a time say every week, or 4 ish days.

GG
 

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I had something similar this year. Split may 5th and did t get a laying queen till August 19th! Almost gave up! And they only ever made one or two cells when I gave em eggs almost seemed not that motivated bit it finally payed off and she's laying up a storm now.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
they may have a non laying queen, that is killing the newly hatched ones.

Shake the hive thru an excluder box, to be sure.
then either intro a new queen or add it to a queen rite smaller hive.

lots of ways to combine. if I had your issue I would news paper combine, only 1 box at a time say every week, or 4 ish days.

GG
Thank you for the great advice! I didn't think about the first queen coming back non-laying, with such lame pheromones the girls would keep trying to replace her. Wow, that would be terrible indeed. I'll shake em out before this last queen I'm trying hatches on Tuesday.

Thanks for reinforcing, too, what I thought would be the best way to get rid of the hive, worst comes to worst-- 1 box at a time, newspaper combined.

And wow, jeetS, that's a similar issue, but one reason I thought I was having this is I made the split late, because our season was late by about two weeks, so I thought I could get away with it. May 5th split having this problem would be weird indeed. I'll keep trying as long as we have a season left, I suppose, before I use the last three weeks to just combine her completely. Going to push them down to 1-2 boxes regardless if the queen shows up, so they're easy to combine that last time if all else fails. That's only one more possible batch of eggs, though.
 
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