need a bit of advice

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dale popham

New Bee
Jun 30, 2009
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Ashford kent
Hive Type
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Hi wondered if any one give me a bit of advice .when inspecting my hive last week I found several queen cells a couple was sealed but the rest was open with no eggs. I found the queen and put her in a nuc with bees and two frames of food with queen and sealed brood in the middle filled the rest with new foundation . I removed all queen sells in hive apart from one QC and was going to leave hive alone for a few weeks. I have just inspected nuc box and can not find the queen or any new eggs there is a small patch of brood left to hatch . So wondered if the queen in the nuc had returned to original hive . So decided to look at original hive and found that the QC I have left appears to of hatched out . There was a few more QC on frames but no eggs . the workers are bringing in loads of pollen and hive looks happy . Would I be right to say the hive has a new queen. And if so should I leave the hive alone for a few weeks .
Where was this nuc? If it was away from the hive she would not have been able to return to the hive as she would not have the positional information.

You wrote: I found the queen and put her in a nuc with bees and two frames of food with queen ... If you have missed the word 'cell' after the second 'queen', she could have gone, but unlikely. They would normally have broken down a queen cell unless really congested.

If a couple of queen cells were sealed it is surprising she had not already swarmed (maybe prevented by the poor weather?), so were these supercedure cells to replace an already ailing queen?

Was the queen clipped?

If she has returned to the hive (nuc very adjacent), anything may have happened, who knows?

Your colony may have a virgin queen, may have the original, may not have one at all.

Your information is scant but there may be others who have an opinion on the matter.

was it the old queen or a new virgin, if a virgin she could of be on mating flight or some times the queen is on the floor or hiding but with no eggs sounds like shes no there.
firstly thanks Oliver for your reply. she was not cliped. i moved her to the other side of garden for the night and moved back near original hive next day about 1 mtr away.thats is what as confused me that they had not swarmed and cleard off.if the weather has held them off and the old queen found her way back to original hive and then the new queen was born would they fight to death sorry for asking stupid questions. it is only secound year so still newbee and trying to find my way around and realy do appriciate any advice. many thanks dale
You appear to have mixed things up a bit here. The old queen should have gone in with 1 frame of stores one frame of brood and some foundation or drawn comb preferably and been placed in the position of the old hive. The rest of the bees, brood and stores together with the old brood box should have been moved to a new site.
This way the flying bees would have returned to the new hive on the old site. By doing it the way you have you have very likely had the flying bees you put with the queen leave the new hive and return to the old one. Additionallly the old hive is still relatively full and has queen cells in it. It is not at all unlikely that the bees may still swarm on the emergence of the first virgin taking half your colony with her..
We have a few conflicts here.

Yes colonies in the wrong place. Yes, with bees - but what type and how many? (if all were flying bees they would have gone home). But also more queen cells drawn, even though there was a sealed Queen cell left behind? - unusual. That queen cell could have been a failure and broken down? Also if queen cells were capped and swarming was imminent (weather permitting), the queen would likely have been off-lay for a couple of days or more before the changes.

Difficult to suggest what is/has happened from a distance.

Did you do a beekeeping course before starting? Do you have a mentor? Are you a member of your local BKA? You do need some local help to sort it out. Do not make drastic changes with your other colony until this one is sorted. You may well need brood frames transferring to get this one queen-right.

Regards, RAB
I think the original queen on the brood has run to the darkside of the nuc box and been found on the stores frames...and balled by the workers on the stores, as not expecting a queen without attendants to appears there and in a defensive mode

New QC, scrub queen, you may also have a virgin in there...just wait and see, you may get castes but just wait
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think that is all i can do for now muswell will give it a week. i am sure there is a new queen in there i will leave her alone.I just hope she mates ok with low drone count's around as i keep reading then we are back on track
i have had a look through the nuc today and i am pleased to say i found the queen. looks like they are building up nicely. original hive looks well buisy took a look in the super nearly full two frames to go and one full super. will check next week to see if new queen is laying.

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