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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
One of my hives has been queenless for around 2 months now. Originally there were lots of queen cells, some of these definitely hatched but I could never find any evidence of a queen thereafter.

About 1 week ago I introduced some more brood and straight away they started making queen cells from these. So thinking they must definitely still be queenless I introduced a new queen a couple of days later.

Yesterday I searched through, no evidence of my new queen, clearly not accepted and killed. No eggs or new larva, but the queen cells had been torn down.

Then I suddenly spotted a very small queen barely bigger than the rest dashing across a frame!! I saw her twice and just managed to snap a photo... but then I searched & searched and just could not find her again! ... She has quite badly damaged wings, they look chewed, photo attached... so I am not sure if she can fly to get mated (assuming she is still a virgin).

I would really like to re-queen these but guessing it wont work until I manage to find this little minx and remove her.... I have introduced more brood again, but I am guessing she will just kill any queens they make? . . .

... does anyone know if the bees will eventually get rid of her? . . . or must I keep trying to find her?

Bee Insect Honeybee Beehive Membrane-winged insect
 

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just a thought and I expect a lot of disagreement-Order a new queen. When she arrives treat the hive like a laying worker hive. Take the hive twenty or more feet away from where it sits and shake/brush off all the bees. Then put the hive back. Put a frame of brood with its attendant nurse bees in and introduce the queen. The workers from the hive will mostly return and the flightless queen won't be able to get back. The hive will know they are queenless and readily accept the new queen. You won't be tasked with trying to find the old queen to snuff her.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Some great advice coming in.... very interesting.. interested to hear more thoughts..

"Looks to me like she is mated." .... what makes you think that? I am just assuming she is a virgin as there are no eggs and she is very small, if there are any other ways of knowing?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
This sounds like a very good possibility... as I really don't think I will be able to find / catch her... I was looking on frame full of bees that she was definitely on for nearly 15 mins and only spotted her very briefly twice! I tried to catch her but she just disappeared each time there was no chance!
 

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Since time is on your side, just give her a couple of weeks to start laying. If she does not, then exercise other options. New virgins take up to 3 weeks to start laying. Time will tell. If she does start laying and is somehow inadequate, they will supersede her anyway. Most virgins look small. They grow in size after mating and maturing.
 

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Some great advice coming in.... very interesting.. interested to hear more thoughts..

"Looks to me like she is mated." .... what makes you think that? I am just assuming she is a virgin as there are no eggs and she is very small, if there are any other ways of knowing?
She doesn't look like a virgin to me. Her abdomen isn't short and pointy.
 
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