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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My fault. . .I didn't checkerboard this year with the intention of splitting. Then I didn't split! So the other day I had a swarm. . .a really big swarm. . .that landed in the usual wax myrtle conveniently 5' off the ground. I watched them leave the hive and land, but unfortunately had no time to capture them since I had to go pick my husband up from work! It was a cloudy day and after 4 pm and I didn't think they'd leave until today, but just in case, I put a box full of drawn comb directly under them and baited it with lemongrass oil. They took immediate notice and I went on my way. When I got home they were gone except for a very few on the scent the queen probably left and another few flying around the box. I peeked in the box to make sure they weren't in there. They weren't!

But when I went out there this morning, I noticed that there were quite a few bees that looked like they were "scouting" the box like Dr. Seeley describes. By this afternoon, there were even more! I'm hoping they merely moved to another, warmer spot for the night, but are now seriously considering the home I'm offering. What are your thoughts?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Believe it or not, I haven't had a chance to check! I was up in Blounts Creek all day yesterday getting the Boy Scouts new apiary at the new Nature Center set up and today it's raining. I plan to spend tomorrow in my beeyard and will let you know the results of all then. Hoping to take some honey, find that the one afterswarm I previously caught and gave some bees/brood to is burgeoning, and to find that swarm happy in its new home so I can move it into the apiary. Keep your fingers crossed!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
No swarm :( And 2 of my hives are queenless! Thursday, I'm going into my strong hives, so maybe I can find a queen cell or combine the queenless hives with the strong hives and maybe make splits. I know there's about 4 boxes of honey that can come off. Stay tuned!
 

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With all the swarming you mentioned I would put a frame of eggs in the hives you believe to be queenless. There very well may be a virgin queen in the hive That hasnt started laying yet. Although I have talked to a couple keeps in my area and they said they was having trouble with queenless hives. I think here it has not been ideal weather conditions and the virigns are not getting mated
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
That's what I'm thinking, riverrat. Thanks for your input and confirmation. One of these hives was an afterswarm, and the queen was there when I hived them. The other was questionable and I gave them a swarm cell from another hive, but nothing. I have seen quite a few drones, but it appears queen fertilization isn't going as well as it might. It's supposed to rain tomorrow, but plan on going into all my hives on Wednesday and doing some major manipulations including giving eggs to both these hives, robbing some honey, and maybe even making splits on three of my hives that are going gangbusters. Of course, in light of the problem with queen making, I may just leave them as three very strong hives! I'll make up my mind when I see exactly what's going on inside.
 
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