Phoenix Appears to Have a Queen

Almost three weeks ago, I tried to make two splits from the Blue/Purple Hive.

One of the splits, named Phoenix, containing the old queen from the Blue/Purple parent hive went queen-less almost immediately. I have no clue what happened since I saw the queen go with the split .

I had seen three queen cells in there, although they were very small and I didn't think they'd produce a viable queen.

In fact, for the past two weeks I've ignored this hive, thinking any day now I'd need to shake them out or combine them with another hive before laying workers developed.

I opened them up last night to make that decision. They were gentle, not agitated, and were busy focusing their attention to mostly one or two frames.

I pulled up one of the frames, and found most all the bees on the frame clustered around the top. I thought, maybe this is the only place that has stores left?

I looked closer, and spotted a rather large bee with an extended abdomen and large black dot on her back.

I took another look, and noticed right away that about 15 worker bees were forming a circle around this large bee. A tell-tale sign that they are nurse bees or attendants accompanying a queen.

I must have taken 20 pictures, and most of them came out blurry.

Only the one below came out clear, although another worker bee is standing on top of others and in the way to see the queen's abdomen, you can clearly see the attendants circling what appears to be a queen.

In person, when the bees weren't stepping over each other and in the way, I could see her longer, darker abdomen.

(Click on the picture below, to open a larger version in a new window)

I stood and watched her for a bit and didn't see her laying any eggs, and I couldn't see any eggs in the frames either.

According to the calendar of queen bee biology, she  might still be a few days away from fertility.

Maybe in another few days we'll see eggs?!

Comments For This Post: (1) | Post Your Comments! Hide The Comment Form
Holly says...
Date:   April 30, 2012, 3:19 pm

I am always impressed with the pictures you manage to take while in the hive.  I discontinued picture-taking because I got propolysis all over the camera and it was always a juggle holding the frame with the other always turned out to be a mess.  What are your secrets??  ; )

Post your Comments!

Your Name: (Leave Blank for Anonymous)

(Feel free to link back to your site within your message!)

You should see a captcha above.
If you don't, your network or browser is likely blocking it.
Your comments will not appear until they're approved.