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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I bought a five frame Nuc last week. Inspected it for first time yesterday. I found the queen, saw lots of honey but no eggs or larvae, and only a hand full of capped brood? The guy said this Nuc was started 3 weeks ago. Is the queen sterile perhaps? I plan to check again next week.

PBK
 

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Was this sold as a nuc with a laying queen, or one started with a queen cell? Sounds like you either got a virgin that hasn't started laying yet (unproven) or worse case, a dud.
A week should tell the story.
 

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Is there room for her to lay eggs if she wanted to?

Do you still have them in the five frame nuc?

In other words if all of the comb is drawn out and full of honey, nectar, pollen and brood then you are honey bound and need to add more space.........more boxes of foundation, or drawn combs.
 

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I'd guess that the nuc was just put together a couple weeks ago, with a laying queen on a frame with brood and other various frames. I'd say the act of moving them while making a nuc disrupted the queen's laying for a few days. I think the odds are in your favor that she'll be up and running in another 2 weeks. Did you move them into a bigger box when you brought home the nuc? If so, that adds another thing for them to adapt to, so give her time to settle from all the disruptions. Give her a chance! :)
 

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some queens will not begin to lay until something is coming in the front door... ideally both pollen and nectar. if I have some question here I typically feed just a bit (shouldn't take much) and if this does not set off egg laying pretty quick then the queen herself is the problem.

it would be useful to know the detail of whether the queen in the box was produced from a cell or was introduced as a mated queen. either way the capped brood and nothing of a lesser age would be a bit disturbing to me. <this at least suggest more than a few days of disturbance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Is there room for her to lay eggs if she wanted to?

Do you still have them in the five frame nuc?

In other words if all of the comb is drawn out and full of honey, nectar, pollen and brood then you are honey bound and need to add more space.........more boxes of foundation, or drawn combs.


I transferred them to a new 10 frame deep the day after i bought them (3/25/12). Unfortunately, just starting out all the new frames have foundation only. The guy said the queens came via mail from Florida and the nucs had been started 3 weeks earlier. Observing the entrance yesterday afternoon, i did see pollen being brought in. i put a pollen patty in Saturday night and have a jar feeder on front with 1 to 1 sugar water.
 

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it would be useful to know the detail of whether the queen in the box was produced from a cell or was introduced as a mated queen. either way the capped brood and nothing of a lesser age would be a bit disturbing to me. <this at least suggest more than a few days of disturbance.
i would agree with tecumseh's post.

also, because you have a new hive and frames of foundation that need to be drawn, give them the resources to do so. i would feed syrup and give a pollen patty as you did, more so the syrup, this should give her a kick start to lay.

it would be disturbing to me as well that this nuc contained only capped brood, there should have been varying stages of brood. if she is not laying within a week or two, your queen is the problem.
 

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""I bought a five frame Nuc last week. Inspected it for first time yesterday.""

""I transferred them to a new 10 frame deep the day after i bought them (3/25/12).""

Which is it??

Did they have eggs and larva when you bought them?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Qeen but no Larvae no capped brood

""I bought a five frame Nuc last week. Inspected it for first time yesterday.""

""I transferred them to a new 10 frame deep the day after i bought them (3/25/12).""

Which is it??

Did they have eggs and larva when you bought them?
Sorry about that.......dates are wrong above. Here's the correct date sequence of events:

March 16th -- purchased the Nuc of bees w/o inspecting it (first mistake)
March 18th -- transferred te Nuc to a 10 frame deep
March 25th -- conducted first inspection, with findings as stated originally

PBK
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Sorry about that.......dates are wrong above. Here's the correct date sequence of events:

March 16th -- purchased the Nuc of bees w/o inspecting it (first mistake)
March 18th -- transferred te Nuc to a 10 frame deep
March 25th -- conducted first inspection, with findings as stated originally

PBK
Still have my dates wrong.........because i'm looking at my calendar at work and wrote my Vacation Day down on the wrong date.....anyway, forget the dates.
I inspected the hive this past Saturday. I bought it the week before w/o inspecting it. So Saturday, March 31st was the first time i've been in this hive.
 

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Difference in communication, I guess. I would call moving the frames from one box to the other an inspection. Were there eggs and larva that day?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Difference in communication, I guess. I would call moving the frames from one box to the other an inspection. Were there eggs and larva that day?[/QUOTE]

Unfortunately, i didn't notice, just moved them as expeditiously as possible. (mistake #2; not taking advantage of that opportunity) LOTS TO LEARN!
 

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Was the nuc bought locally? If so, I would talk to the supplier and take it back for him or her to see and advise, unless they would come to you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Yes sir, i bought it from a local guy i met while attending my first meeting at a local Bee Club. I called him about the situation after my inspection. His suggestion was to check again in a week and if no sign of queen laying to destroy her and move some frames from another hive, with age appropriate eggs, to allow them to requeen. Definitely not the reply i was looking for.
 

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That would be the last nuc I bought from him, and I would tell about it at the local club. No animosity, just the facts. Let the club members decide for themselves.

If you have other hives, I would add a frame containing eggs now. Then check in a week, for both eggs and queen cells. Report back here then and we can go from there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
That would be the last nuc I bought from him, and I would tell about it at the local club. No animosity, just the facts. Let the club members decide for themselves.

If you have other hives, I would add a frame containing eggs now. Then check in a week, for both eggs and queen cells. Report back here then and we can go from there.
Will do. Thanks
 

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In the future, always check for eggs yourself before leaving with the nuc. There is a tendency sometimes to sell nucs fast without checking the laying ability of a new queen. My queen breeder always replaces my duds, no questions asked.
 

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Yes sir, i bought it from a local guy i met while attending my first meeting at a local Bee Club. I called him about the situation after my inspection. His suggestion was to check again in a week and if no sign of queen laying to destroy her and move some frames from another hive, with age appropriate eggs, to allow them to requeen. Definitely not the reply i was looking for.
"Definitely not the reply i was looking for."

i second idee’s advice to you. we expect, and trust that nucleus hives sold to us are are up and running, and the beekeeper that sold that nuc to us ensured that the queen was laying and the nucleus healthy. not always the case.

been in your shoes, and the supplier should, as charley said replace it or return your money, no questions asked or excuses of what to try next and then call back. what was the reply you would have liked to hear from the supplier? maybe consider calling him back, and with some diplomacy, either ask for your money back or ask for what you would like to resolve it to your satisfaction.
 

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I am 100 percent with Iddee here.

just to demonstrate to ya' that this kind of thing does happen... I have a customer who buys a few nucs from me each year. pretty much a new beekeeper who picks up 5 frame nucs here at the house and he then transfers them at his house some miles away. he is always good about returning boxes and puts a lot of effort into our bee club. he called me two days ago telling me that two of the four nucs he purchased were not laying. I suspect that somewhere in the checking or transfer the queen got smashed. I really don't know if this happened here or there... doesn't really matter to me. So Sunday I will connect up with him with several new queens in hand and if they are queenless I will place new queens in the box for him. If they are not queenless then it will serve as a good teaching tool for him and all I will be out is a bit of diesel fuel.

I really think it is just good business
 
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