View Full Version : Hive re-Queened itself...

Jun 10th 2009, 04:57 PM
I installed a 3 lb. package on 4/11/09 into a brand new hive with undrawn foundation) and upon inspection today, I have swarm cells present... (One of them emerged from the cell during inspection!)

I didn't see any larva or eggs really, just lots of capped brood (I'd attach a photo if I could!)... so I think (?) that I lost the queen somehow? If I did, wouldn't I have seen supercedure cells at the top of the frame instead of swarm cells at the bottom?

Also....There was still plenty of foundation left to be drawn out. I was under the impression that swarming is generally a hazard when the hive becomes overcrowded. How is that possible when there's still so much foundation left to be drawn?? Or is this just breed instinct? (they are carnolians)

Since I didn't find the queen and didn't see eggs or larva, only capped brood... I left the queen that emerged into the hive as I was inspecting alone and am thinking I'll watch for eggs/larva in 7-10 days or so.

Do they swarm before or after the new queen has emerged?? There's still LOTS Of bees in the hive, would there be noticeably fewer bees today?

Jun 10th 2009, 06:24 PM
Swarm cells on bottom are TYPICAL, not set in stone. Bees don't always do the typical way. It sounds like the hive is healthy and an inspection for eggs and larva in 10 to 12 days should have good results.

Jun 19th 2009, 11:40 AM
Typically swarm cups will appear on the bottom of frame but can be anywhere in bottom 1/3 of frame, generally speaking queen cells in the middle portions of the frame are your supercedure cells. If your observed a capped queen cell hatch out, then the old queen and attending swarm left days ago. The capped brood will emerge inside a week or so and re-invigorate the colony, the virgin queen will mate within 2 weeks and a week later the egg laying will begin again. In short yuour colony should be just fine swarming aside

Jun 25th 2009, 10:50 PM
Well, on the 13th day following the observed emergence of a virgin queen, the hive has no evidence of a queen in residence. We observed no eggs (normal or not) and no larva (brood) at all, so I'm thinking that something happened and the new queen was unable to return to the hive and start laying.

So, I ordered a new queen that arrived today (day 15) and am looking to install her tomorrow.

Here's my question: When we inspected the hive on day 13, we also did not see any queen cups present....
Should I be worried there's a queen in there somewhere (even though we can't find her and see no eggs to suggest she's there) that might kill this new queen I've ordered?

Jun 26th 2009, 07:34 AM
Yes, there is a good chance of that. 13 days after emergence equals what beeks consider the 29th day. "16 to emerge+13". They can easily go till the 35th day before starting to lay.

Jun 26th 2009, 08:22 AM
Can I smoke and inspect the hive (to look again for a queen) prior to introducing this new queen or will that increase the likelihood that they'll reject her?

Jun 26th 2009, 09:02 AM
You definitely can, and should.

Jun 26th 2009, 09:02 AM
While normally Iam a advocate of least amount of hive disruption as possible, yeah you certianly can, they are your bees. I would be inclined to make a thourgh search for the possible existing queen, remember she will be rather small and probably inclined to run away from the light but look for her if not found can take a hive body place a queen excluder under the new hive body, add a few empty frames drawn comb if available and introduce new queen above the excluder--will keep any queen from below from raising to the fight, if capped brood is there I would put a few capped frames with new queen as they hatch out will be the nurse bees for new queen, also will allow the bees to accept her even if another below is the queens that want to fight at this point workers will ball a queen if she is failing, or if just released without introduction. Also feed the colony--

Jun 26th 2009, 09:22 AM
Okay, good thing I did that......this morning, the inspection resulted in seeing normal larva and eggs (laid in bottom of cell, not on the sides) in a pretty tight brood pattern. So, I now have a queen with no home.... wonderful.

Recommendations on how to care for her to keep her alive until I find her a new colony? She's in one of those california mini cages and came in the mail yesterday (was shipped Wednesday morning).

Jun 26th 2009, 11:18 AM
1.) do you have another hive or
2.) know someone willing to sell you a few frames of brood need a few frames of sealed brood a hive body, few more empty frames, fill the rest out with foundation so 10 frames in all, a entrance reducer, and syrup ( sugar water )hive top feeder enclosed by another super is best to prevent robbing. place the capped brood in the outside of middle with empty framed in middle foundation to the outside on both sides. the queen will lay almost immediately in the empty frames, as the bees emerge from capped brood frames, they will feed the new brood, and free up more egg laying space for queen. is amazing how fast they can build up, once things get going. know that time is running out and the longer it takes for you to set her up the lest likely this nuc will survive without being combined with another queenless hive. as for maintenance of the new queen while doing this time is critical for this as described to be done--bearing that there is a limited amount of candy for her to be fed by her attendants. also they will start to die from age, and she can't feed herself. get going get it done yesterday!!!!! Let us know how things work out you may have another hive in the making if you get moving.

Jul 1st 2009, 11:16 AM
Okaaaay.... so here's my update (and I'd like some feedback, too please!)

I was able to get a 4 frame nuc of bees/brood and a frame of capped honey.
I put the 4 frames into a deep along with the frame of honey and the queen with her candy plug facing up.
I placed an entrance reducer on the deep and covered it up.

Here's me hoping the new hive can get strong enough for winter. Any tips?? Experiences?

Jul 1st 2009, 12:25 PM
What date did you install her? You need to check for release and eggs 7 days later.
Then another update.

Jul 1st 2009, 12:55 PM
Today, July 1st. She's still in cage with candy in new hive. I'll check in 7 days and let you know!

Jul 19th 2009, 11:29 AM
Okay, so I obtained a 4-frame nuc of bees/brood to unite with my homeless queen. I'm happy to report she did not die while awaiting her court.... :D

So, July 1st the new hive was established with 4 frames of bees/brood, 1 frame of honey, and 5 empty (undrawn) frames of foundation. Everything looks to be going along pretty well. Two weeks later, July 15th, I added the 2nd deep of undrawn foundation. Things seem to be looking okay.

Here's my question....Is there enough summertime left for this new hive to get strong enough and store enough honey to over-winter? Any suggestions on helping them along?

Jul 19th 2009, 11:39 AM
>>>>Any suggestions on helping them along?<<<<<

feed, feed, feed and then feed some more.