There hasn’t been any bee news for pretty much a month – not since I undertook the emergency artificial swarm – see here. In summary we moved the old hive (now known as hive 2) to a new site and then took out the frame with the old Queen on it and another frame of brood and put it in a new hive (now known as hive 1) on the old site – yes it is making my head hurt as well! A few days later when I had managed to get some more frames from bee club I looked again in hive 2. I destroyed all but 3 sealed Queen cells, added in the frames to make up the full set and added some sugar water feed. Then I shut it up and committed to waiting at least 3 weeks to give the new Queen a chance to hatch and then mate and then start laying. At this time I also checked hive 1 (new hive with old Queen), but I couldn’t find the Queen. What I did find were Queen cells with larvae in them. I looked a few days later and I still couldn’t find her, and the Queen cells were now sealed. It looked as if the Queen had swarmed and the hive was busy trying to make a new Queen. So I had to leave this hive for at last three weeks as well.
Yesterday I decided it was time to check the hives and to see what had happened to my bees. I started with hive no.2. I was doing it alone without my trusty assistant so there aren’t really any good photos – sorry – it is hard to hold frames and the camera! I did not see a new Queen, but I did see 5 frames of brood in various stages including capped brood – there is a new Queen – hurray. There was also some honey and pollen. However, not all the frames in the brood box have been drawn yet and the colony is still quite small. Now to hive no.1. I didn’t see the Queen, but I found 2 frames of brood – much younger brood than in hive no.2, but that is to be expected as this Queen would have hatched out later. I have two new Queens – double hurray. Of course now I just have to locate them. Again this colony is quite small and five of the frames have not been drawn out. I will leave them for a couple of weeks and then check again. I am so excited.
I did see something unusual. In hive no.2 I found some moths which I squished and I also saw something strange in one or two of the cells – marked on the photo. If anyone has any idea what this might be, please let me know. These tow things may or may not be related – I don’t know.
N.B. Yesterday was a very bee-orientated day for as as I also went to bee club. I managed to find the apiary all by myself and had a great time checking through their hives with the other members. I learned so much and all the people there are really lovely – I am looking forward to going again in a couple of weeks.