Queen Accepted, No More Laying Workers!

If you're just tuning in, here's a recap of my fall activities with the White Hive:

The hive went queen less, and produced three emergency queen cells. None of them worked out.

As a result, they developed laying workers. Then a friend from my local club gave me a queen to try along with the shake out method.

I used a pushed-in style queen cage, and released her three days after introduction. Then a few days later I checked on her, and could not find her or evidence she was there.

Whew- you're all caught up now!

Today I went out to inspect the white hive and blue/purple hive to see how they were doing. I was prepared (mentally) to combine the white hive with the blue/purple hive if I didn't see any evidence of a queen. I was frustrated with the history of the white hive, and nothing they (or I) tried had been working.

I checked the bottom brood box of the white hive, and the first 4 frames I pulled were completely empty. I checked the center frames in the bottom and saw some eggs.

I didn't get excited though because I marked those frames as ones that had laying worker eggs in them previously. In this case, eggs weren't good enough for me, I needed to see a queen.

I am from Missouri, the great "Show Me" state, where we typically don't believe it unless we see it first hand.

I then pulled a frame from the top box, and behold, the marked queen we released from two weeks ago!

Below I zoomed in a little closer, and you can see a small circle of attendants around her.

You'd think seeing her would have been good enough proof for me right? Nah.  I wanted to witness her lay some eggs, so I knew she wasn't just walking around not laying eggs.

I saw her step to the next cell, stick her head in and then turn around and lay an egg in it. Then she continued to check and then lay eggs in the next 10 cells as I watched.

That, was good enough for me. This colony now seems to be queen-right again, has a healthy laying queen and plenty of nurse bees still.

I  replenished their hive top feeder and closed them up. As long has nothing else happens to them, they might make it through the winter.

I opened the blue/purple hive just to check on them. This hive has been so over crowded all year!

The picture below is of the top hive body. See how they are stacked in there, side by side, taking up space between all 10 frames! I expect them to overwinter very good.

I also expect them to put up a heck of a fight trying to swarm in the spring.

Comments For This Post: (0) Be The First! | Post Your Comments! Hide The Comment Form

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.