Demeree gone wrong

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BarshamAndy

New Bee
Joined
Apr 26, 2023
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Location
Beccles
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I did a demeree a few weeks ago on one of my hive as they were starting to produce swarm cells.
All went well until 3 days ago when a deer(?) knocked over the hive. We have several running around the garden (Though it may have been my dog chasing a deer!)

Anyway the upshot is at about 11.30 in the morning 3 days ago I found the damn thing laying on the floor split open and being robbed to bits...It was mayhem, much worse than any swarm I've seen with fighting and heck of a racket!
I put it back together but without a queen excluder as I had no idea where she was. National brood box at bottom, Super (now half eaten), Super *again nearly all robbed) , then the original initial brood box back on top.

I checked them today as I just had a 3Km EFB warning from the NBU.

No problem with that but there's so many bees I can't find the queen and .... Now shes laying in the top box not the bottom where she was before ! I nearly put the top box on the bottom underneath the 2nd brood box but didn't want to mess them about too much as they are probably still traumatised from Wednesday!

Any thoughts - or shall I just leave them to it? (No sign of swarm cells).
 
Crikey. Good job she’s still there.
I’d go back and sort the boxes out
Have a good look for queen cells. If there are any I would simply nuc the queen. You’re lucky you didn’t lose a swarm. Demaree is done before you have queen cells and if you wait till the bees are making swarm preps they often swarm anyway.
 
If I could have found her I would have put her under a Queen Excluder in the bottom box. But there's so many bees. They have enough stores left I think but I'll keep an eye on it. I've got a syrup container on red alert if they need it. I thought maybe the best course of action was maybe to put the top brood box (Hoping she is still in there as thats where she's been laying) at the bottom on the floor under the 2nd broodbox and then QE on top of the 2nd box, then just bung the 2 (now) half empty supers back on top.... if you see what I mean..... Or I could put the QE under the top Brood box and check in 3 days to see if there's eggs - in which case she's definitely in that one so I can then move that one to the bottom and put a QE on top of that ..... Clear as mud?
 
Good plan I would say - it's a sure fire way of finding where a queen has gone within a hive then you can do the re-organisation to get back to what you want.
 
Thanks all. The demaree went fine with no swarms. I must have been lucky. The problem is not the demaree itself, that worked a treat, but the stack being knocked over and the Queen finding her way into the top box after the collapse... probably the darkest space as the crown board was still stuck down on top.

I had left the brood box on top to fill with honey as to have some spare brood comb next year after extraction.

What was full of brood initially was being filled with nectar after the demeree, which is now pretty much gone. It is now full of eggs. I think I'll just put a QE under the top box for 3 days and see where she is laying on Wednesday, then move the box down again so the brood is at the bottom again...... But then again, she knows what she is doing!
 
I'm confused now :D .... The question was as to what to do next after the hive being in bits on the floor not what have I done wrong doing the demeree or whether drones could get out - (which they could)!

Initially - Ordinary national floor, brood box, QE, super, super, crown board, roof.

Then Demeree'd ....

Floor, New brood box, QE, next up was super, next up another super, next up initially another QE - (later taken off), then the original brood box with a circular entrance widget set open (Hence drones can get out!), then a crown board then the roof .. but no strap.

Now after hitting the deck - Floor, BB, super, super, BB, crown board, roof - No queen excluder as I didn't know where she was. Top entrance on BB now closed.

The question was not about whether I had done the demeree right or not, as whatever I did worked, but what to do with the fact that I've now got a queen (that I can't find due to the amount of bees) laying eggs in the top brood box.

Move the box down? Shake the bees through a QE? leave it as is? put a QE under the top BB? Put a QE above the bottom BB? Go fishing?

Thanks
Andy
 
Yes, put in a QX between each box, go fishing for a couple of days and then check which box has eggs. Re-assemble with brood on the floor and supers as usual without top entrance, to avoid more robbing. Let drones out after a few days.

they are probably still traumatised from Wednesday!
Not really; unlike humans which harbour a grudge, bees get on with repairs and go back to work. I've found fallen hives after a week of rain, put them back together and done an inspection. Bees couldn't have cared less.
 

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