Last time I posted about the bees I was hopeful that I was maybe going to be able to go from having one viable hive to three as I had found some sealed Queen cells in the one good hive – see here. Well, last time I looked, it seems to have worked.
Hives 2 and 4 now have laying Queens in them. It took a while – about 4-5 weeks before the Queen in hive 2 started to lay but there are definitely eggs and brood there now.
The bees in the hive 3 (my favourite bees) are busy drawing out their supers and filling them with honey – we might even get some honey this year.
However, all is not completely calm in bee-land. Earlier this week in hives 2 and 3 I found a Queen cell with developed larvae in (not sealed). There is plenty of room in hive 2 and even hive 3 has some space. There was evidence of eggs though. I wasn’t sure what to do. I checked again yesterday and although I couldn’t find the Queens (story of my life) there were still eggs so I took the decision to knock down the Queen cells and leave them another week. If there isn’t a Queen (if she has swarmed) then they can make one of the eggs into a Queen. Bee keeping is such a steep learning curve.
But why have I called this post 4 hives? Well because the lovely Penny and Linda from bee club brought me a swarm with a laying Queen in a nucleus box early yesterday morning. We transferred the frames into my fourth hive (1) and they seem to be doing well. This Queen is actually marked (white) and has her wings clipped – so I stand a chance of finding her again. Below you can see the bees flying in an out and getting used to their new home.