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Posts Tagged ‘queenless hive’

Two weeks after I noticed capped queen cups in hive #1, I went back in to see if their  attempt at requeening was successful. Alas…. no sign of a queen and there was absolutely no sign of any eggs in the cells.  All the brood that had been developing had hatched out, and there was no evidence of egg laying.  But the workers were still busy doing what bees do…. the newly hatched bees ( from the former queen) were making comb and the foragers were still bringing in nectar and pollen. And the drones were just hanging about, as usual.  Without a queen replacing the bees that die, a colony will slowly dissipate.  I consulted my manuals and talked with some other fellow beekeepers and got varying answers as to how long a colony would last without a queen….anywhere from 4 – 8 weeks.  I had to do something. I contacted my bee supplier, “Honeybee Genetics” out of California and they had a fertile queen in stock…. for $24.95.  And then extra for shipping . Hah….That is one expensive insect!  I ordered it and it will arrive next Friday (June 8).  But there is still a chance that I did not see the new queen in the hive.  It takes two weeks for a newly hatched queen to mate and then start laying eggs.  So….. before I add the new queen to the hive next week, I’ll check to see if there is evidence of a queen.  If I add the queen that I bought to a hive with an established queen in it, then the workers will immediately kill her…. and I’ll lose my investment. Ouch! That would sting. ( pun intended)    The bee drama continues.

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