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OK - I have a hive that is bewildering. This hive swarmed early June. Since then I haven't seen any sign of a queen (no eggs...). Twice I've put frames of fresh eggs in the hive. They tend to the brood but do not build a queen cell. I've also tried introducing a purchased queen (in a cage using the 'standard' wait time for her to be releases). Is it possible there's a queen in there but not laying? My next step is to shake all the bees in a box with a queen excluder below and see if there is a queen. Anyone run into this situation? Note, I DO NOT have a laying worker as there is NO sign of eggs.
 

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Your hive has a non-laying queen. As long as she is there bees won't accept or make another queen. You need to find and remove her. Shaking bees through a QE is a good idea.
 

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Yes a non laying queen can be the reason. Also, if you haven't looked at every frame, there could be laying worker brood on a small portion of frames. I have had that with only a frame or two being laid in. With a non laying queen you may also find several frames with comb all cleaned out waiting for the queen to lay.
 

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I have used a strong nuc to requeen a hive like this. Newspaper combine. The next day I found the old queen tossed out.
 

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Yes, I have identical situation in one of my hives -mid June queen supercedure. On last inspection I finally found the queen, she is ~2 weeks behind schedule, but it seems that she just laid few eggs- was very hard to see without direct sunlight, so maybe I was already seeing things I wanted to see... I will check again in few days to confirm.
 

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extracted some of my honey supers yesterday, and pulled a few supers from this hive... so much for my queen excluder.... Queen was in my honey supers laying. Lesson learned, never take anything for granted, including queen excluders. Queen must be small to fit through the queen excluder.

I left the honey supers on with capped brood on the hive. Thinking I could use a fume board to push the bees (and the queen) to the deeps rather than going through frame by frame (which is always an option though), thoughts?

Thanks for your thoughts and sorry for my unnecessary question due to my negligence.

Bruce
 

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extracted some of my honey supers yesterday, and pulled a few supers from this hive... so much for my queen excluder.... Queen was in my honey supers laying. Lesson learned, never take anything for granted, including queen excluders. Queen must be small to fit through the queen excluder.

I left the honey supers on with capped brood on the hive. Thinking I could use a fume board to push the bees (and the queen) to the deeps rather than going through frame by frame (which is always an option though), thoughts?

Thanks for your thoughts and sorry for my unnecessary question due to my negligence.

Bruce
Bruce I have done that a couple times, do not beat up your self "too bad"

My fix is 2 things I now do,
1) take a bottom or top out to inspect, all the supers go on my brought out top that are above the excluder. other boxes on their own lid, checking the lid, pre adding the supers back.
2) very carefully examine the excluder, shake if needed, place on the super stack.

since then I have not had this issue. Interesting to note 2 times since then I found the queen on the excluder. Not sure maybe she was looking for more room. Prior I do recall maybe turning it over on the stack , allowing the queen to go into the supers.

keep thoughtful separation of "queenless" and non queenless " boxes and the likelihood this happens is reduced. both mine were done during inspections as I did back date the brood to about the day I was last there.

I did also have a returning supersedure queen go into an upper entrance one time with excluder. as that turned out they still had the old queen in the bottom.

if mine I would just remove the excluder, they will fill and she will move down on her own. Already have brood up there so the damage is done.

GG
 
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