Beesource Beekeeping Forums banner

1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
29 days ago we started two hives from packaged bees and all was going well until yesterday, when they seemed irritated and had slopped syrup all over the ramp... As I was inspecting the excess syrup, I found the queen on the ground in front of the hive... The day before, I inspected the hives and saw increasing numbers, the queen and everything appeared OK, except for the fact that they were about 10-15% behind the other hive in drawn comb...

I'm at a loss... Any ideas???:s
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
507 Posts
Sorry to hear about your lost queen. It could have been anything, we may never know. If she was laying eggs, check the frames to see if the bees are drawing out new queen cells. If not, you can consider purchasing a new queen that has already been mated and a proven layer. PM me, I can give the contact information for an excellent resource for queens...it's not me.

I'm sure there are many, many folks around you who will help you get a queen quickly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Sugar,

I'm only a second year BEEK and run only a few hives, but I've not seen bees "slop" anything. I would guess your feeder is leaking and that is the mess you see. I would not have expected the queen to get caught in the mess, but it sounds like bad luck following a leaking feeder to me. I know when I tried a coffee can with the plastic lid, I couldn't hold a decent vacuum and it leaked significantly in just a short time. I checked it shortly after having put it on and like you had syrup on the landing board. Pulled it off and got one of my top hive feeders out of the closet.

I would get a new queen coming or see if they will requeen themselves, really up to you. If you let them requeen, you can loose up to a month. No right or wrong answer on requeening, just preference (unless you really want the best chance for a honey crop off that hive this year, then requeen asap. Even then, you may not get any surplus depending on weather, location, etc. etc.).

Chris
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,183 Posts
Sorry about your mishap.

I don't know about your location but here in middle TN the nectar flow is mostly over by the end of June. The point is that even if you had a laying queen right now the eggs she produced from now on would only consume nectar as they develop and the flow will be over by the time they start to forage. So while you don't want the hive to remain queenless you might get more honey by letting them raise a queen on their own. If you have a useful fall flow then the outlook is different.

Either way, in my limited experience when that new queen they raise starts laying she can usually produce a lot of brood in a short time.


Good luck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
37 Posts
I'd bank on a leaky feeder for the syrup being all over. Also, do you remove a frame before doing inspections so that you are manipulating a 10 frame hives while only 9 frames in it? If all 10 frames are in the hive when inspecting, it's possible the queen was rolled and killed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for all the input everyone... The feeder was a front feeder that came with a beginners hive and I could find nothing wrong with it, so I tried it again yesterday and it worked fine... It's possible that the queen was killed in the inspection, but I did remove a frame before the inspection and was slow about placing them back in... Two things though... I spotted a drone near the queen or maybe another queen, since I'm very new at all this... Also no other bees were in contact with the queen... Here is her picture... http://picasaweb.google.com/1bigyeti/20100525#5476649657624571474

I will inspect tomorrow to see if they are making a new queen or if I can find another queen in the hive... If yes, I'll back off, if no I'll get a queen here asap... What else should I do???
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
OK, here's the latest... I inspected the hive yesterday and they are starting a cell about the size of a pencil eraser near the middle of #5 frame. It wasn't there 4 days ago, so I assume that they are attempting to make a new queen... Right now I need some help from those of you who are more knowledgeable than myself, which is just about all of you... Should I watch while the numbers dwindle or should I re-queen??? Where can I get a good queen quickly, without spending a bundle??? Retired and on fixed income, so $$$ is a factor... Thanks for all the input gang... Wish I had someone local that I could get to take a look and advise....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,613 Posts
How much capped and open brood do you have in that hive? If you have several frames of brood, emerging bees will keep the population going while they make a queen. Just don't throw a bunch of boxes on them. You want the hive slightly crowded while they get going again. If you don't have much brood, the bees may have offed her to make a new queen they like better. Without much capped and open brood, you may have to supplement them with a frame of capped brood occasionally from the other hive. That's how you work with what you have. That's also why I like at least three hives, it gives you more assets to work with. If you can find a queen, that's an option as well.

One another note, I would lose the front feeder. A weak hive is an invitation to robbing. Front feeders attract robbers.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top