Late Queen

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May 26, 2021
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I had a colony that became Queenless on about the 15th September. It produced 9 EQCs which emerged on around the 3rd/4th of October. There were no drones or drone brood in that colony nor in any of my other 4 colonies and so I considered that the chance of the new queen mating successfully was pretty low. I hummed and hawwed about whether or not to combine the Q- colony with a stronger one, but then decided just to leave them to their own devices and to see what happened.

I went back in today to see what had happened in the intervening three weeks or more and to my joy and surprise found a new queen there and a small brood nest on three frames. So I've moved the entire colony into a Polynuc and started feeding it. It's under pressure from wasps so I've also put out a wasp trap and closed down the entrance to a one-bee size.

It's a very small colony and I'd say that its chance of making it through the winter is quite small, but at least it has a chance now.
So my question is:
If the wasps are proving a real pest with this very small colony, and given that there is very little forage around, would it be sensible to close the Nuc entrance with the perforated cover (holes for air but too small for bees or wasps) to give them some time to recover? After all, if I'm feeding them syrup and there isn't any forage outside then they don't really need to go out for a while, do they?
With the very poor weather forecasted it won't hurt , the bees I doubt will venture out much. In a poly nuc a small colony stands a very good chance of pulling thru till spring esp with new brood being laid, whether she develops in to a drone layer you won't know .They will only raise enough bees that they can cover.

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