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A fellow beekeeper told me this weekend that a hive with no brood will not bring in pollen. This was after an inspection of an overwinter hive that has plenty of bees but no queen or brood was seen.
Is there any validity to this?
TIA
Steve
 

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There are very few absolutes in beekeeping. I would say that your beekeeper friend is not 100% accurate in his statement. It is generally considered a "good sign" when you see lots of foragers coming back loaded with pollen. It is an indication that brood-rearing has been kicked into high gear. But to say the opposite, that NO pollen will be brought to a queenless hive, is not necessarily true. However, I have had queenless hives next to queen-right hives and have noticed that queenless hives seem to bring in far less pollen than their queen-right neighbors.
 

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There are very few absolutes in beekeeping. I would say that your beekeeper friend is not 100% accurate in his statement. It is generally considered a "good sign" when you see lots of foragers coming back loaded with pollen. It is an indication that brood-rearing has been kicked into high gear. But to say the opposite, that NO pollen will be brought to a queenless hive, is not necessarily true. However, I have had queenless hives next to queen-right hives and have noticed that queenless hives seem to bring in far less pollen than their queen-right neighbors.
That's been my observation as well.
 

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Not an hour ago I opened a hive that was queenless and broodless. They were bringing in pollen and had several frames loaded with stored pollen.
 

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I watched one colony that I had above a snelgrove board; definitely queenless and I was beginning to think it a problem that they were filling the centre cells as quick as the brood was emerging. I figured the queen would be pollen bound but once she mated and started laying the nurse bees turned it into bees very quickly. I have seen it mentioned that solid pollen frames had to be removed. Dont remember what the queen status was.
 
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