A queen on her own?

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edjex 

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I was sat in my study yesterday afternoon with the french doors open, both dogs basking in the sun on the small balcony outside while I got on with work when I heard a bit of buzzing and look round to see that something had settled on the wall. It was perhaps a bit less than 2cm in length with a long pointy abdomen and dark brown in colour. It had a bit of a crawl and then it was off again out the door and away.

Could it have been a new queen on her mating flight, stopping for a quick break? As I'm yet to get any bees I've not actually seen a queen in the flesh before.

I did have a momentary panic that I might find a swarm of bees had taken up residence in the half painted hive in my garage :eek:
 

MJBee 

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Your description sounds like a queen bee - any colonies you know of near you?

A few drops of lemon grass oil in your empty hive will make it very attractive to scout bees. Worked for me 2nd year running:)
 

Chris Luck 

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It's also a perfect description of a couple of species of horse fly and they are solitary.

Chris
 

mexbigshow 

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Your description sounds like a queen bee - any colonies you know of near you?

A few drops of lemon grass oil in your empty hive will make it very attractive to scout bees. Worked for me 2nd year running:)
yes i agree get some lemon grass oil in the hive, last year i wasted money on a swarm lure £6 i think and got nothing so i tried lg oil and after a few days the hive was full of bees, did the same this year bought a lure and nothing put some drops of oil on frames this morning and after 10 mins there was bees buzzing all over around the hive.
 

edjex 

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There is a riding school nearby so I guess it could have been a horse fly, but on all the images that popped up when I googled horse flies last night they had wings that extended beyond the end of the abdomen whereas I think my visitor had shorter wings.

My visitor looked more like http://beediary.files.wordpress.com/2008/05/black-queen.jpg than http://freepages.misc.rootsweb.ance...ed Horse Fly (Tabanus subsimilis) [MO 07].jpg

Certainly didn't look like http://www.theequinest.com/images/horse-photoshop-34.jpg :rofl:

Wish I'd had my camera to hand at the time.

There are a few beekeepers within a couple of miles and the lemon grass oil suggestion is a good one and something that was also mentioned on the course I'm doing. I've still to finish painting the hive and have to create a level site within the garden for my apiary before I can think about doing that though. Much work to do over the coming bank holidays!
 

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