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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
just a quickie,
I got a nuc last year, it did well and has overwintered well too. I fed them all through later summer and autumn and left the super on, (no excluder) for them to munch over the winter.
Well, I went to have a very quick peek today, lots of bees, returning with pollen from somewhere, some eggs. its not massively warm yet despite the sun so I didnt have a good root around, just a quick look.

the supers are practically untouched so Ive been advised to pop on a porter escape, clear them out, then bag up the super for autumn feeding. Ill do this during the week if it warms up but in the meantime ive popped the excluder back on for now.

One thing I did notice is that there were 2 queen cups in the brood box, incipient I think is the word. not sealed, both near the top of the frame. Im racking my brain trying to remember bee school and what they advised about these but I cant remember.
Given the nuc was new last year I presume the queen is now only in her second year? is it liekly she will swarm? are these indicators that I need to be ready for the swarm or do they just make these things up for giggles anyway?

Ive gotr a spare brood box ready for them if needs be anyway but I dont want to act hastily.

What do they mean? and whay should I do?



760 Posts
thats a bad thing to find this time of year -
cells at the upper frame level are queen replacement cells and not swarm cells

this means that the queen had been lost or hurt in some way -

i say bad this time of year because there is very few drones to mate with until about apirl - if you????

problem here is that the queen takes 16 days and the drones take 24 - then it takes another 10-12 days before sperm is mature enough -and to make matters worse - is that spring it hampered by lots of rainy days and temps that are not in favor for mating - which is normally 70 +

but then again could be last years cells that were missed - keep an eye on them and see if there is a egg in the cups

you might find a queen breeder down south that can get you a mated queen

if left to its on they will make a queen but chances are the queen will be a drone layer and the hive will fail

do a good check for the queen but start planing on a new queen
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