Can queens climb through queen excluders?

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Jaxxmac 

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So, 3rd year beekeeper here, still feel very new and need some advice. Haven't checked my hive for 3 weeks - frosts and then a hospital stay unfortunately meant no inspecting. Got back and had a look before the Bank Holiday storm and had a shock. The brood box was low on bees and the super was full. The Queen was nowhere to be seen. Did a full check of all frames and the brood box and couldn't see her at first so then went back to check super. Lots of capped brood in it with a few bigger drone cells. Had a hunt around and found Queenie in the brood box, also noticed 1 Queen cell but couldn't tell if it had been chewed or was new - wasn't there last inspection. Am Flummoxed. So my thoughts are;
1. Queen went through QE and layed in super - might have been warmer or nearer food?
2. Queen isn't laying and the capped brood are laying workers (couldn't see multiple eggs and they're not larger cells than normal)
3. There's a new Queen who is laying in super and old Queen is pottering about down below. (Is 3 weeks to soon for this)
4. Somehow Queen transferred to super when I did last inspection as I lay my spare frame on the super on the floor.

Can anyone tell me what has probably happened? Am thinking I will inspect next warm day I get and see if Queen is laying in brood box now and if not panic!
 

hemo 

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If the queen in the super is definitely a new lady then either she is small and squeezed through or the QX has a rogue spot that she can pass by.
If a wire QX then may be one of the gaps is slightly wider or a bent wire.

Edited a spelling error.
 
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MerryBee 

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Queens do sometimes manage to get through a wire queen excluder. A slightly wider gap between the wires may not be at all obvious.
I have never had a queen get through a plastic excluder.
As your queen is still present and you have worker brood, its not going to be laying workers.
Pretty unlikely to be a second queen in the super. How would she have got there other than through the queen excluder?
If you accidently transferred your queen to the super on the previous inspection, but you found her in the brood box, she must have got back down into the brood box by herself.

My money is on a faulty queen excluder.
 

oliver90owner 

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1). but likely the wrong reasoning.

2). when have you seen laying workers with a queen present? Yes, they will always be possible, but activity will be suppressed.

3). impossible if worker brood is present - unless you have holes in the top box so the queen could get mated? Could have been two queens in the hive?

4). You should know! If that occurred, there would be no open brood in the bottom box?

5). Some other reason you’ve not considered.
 

madasafish 

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What kind of QE?
Wire ones sometimes bend/faulty welding giving a gap.

BUT I once set a super down on top of a Brood box for 10 seconds, realised mistake and quickly picked it up. In all probably 30 seconds.
Found Q in super next visit!

My money on faulty QE.
 

enrico 

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A common fault is that you take off the super and put it to one side, you then take off the queen excluder and lay it on top of the super. The queen is on the excluder and quickly scrambles down into the super. Is that what you might have done! 😏
This may give some light reading!
E
 

Jaxxmac 

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Thanks all. 😁 I went back over my record for that day and Queen was spotted with eggs in brood box. I'm going with faulty QE as it is wire..... plastic one on order. Read enrico's guide on handling and do this mostly as was taught by my excellent mentor but I always remove 1 brood frame and lay it on top of super so was worrying I'd done something daft. Or more daft than usual.
 

enrico 

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Thanks all. 😁 I went back over my record for that day and Queen was spotted with eggs in brood box. I'm going with faulty QE as it is wire..... plastic one on order. Read enrico's guide on handling and do this mostly as was taught by my excellent mentor but I always remove 1 brood frame and lay it on top of super so was worrying I'd done something daft. Or more daft than usual.
Ah! There lies your problem methinks!!!
 

Nige.Coll 

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Workers will move drone eggs up into supers if there isn't space in the brood box.
 

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