New Bee - need help

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New Bee
Apr 29, 2010
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I'm a new beekeeper so am often unsure about what I'm looking at in my hive. I have a beehaus with a nuclueus that was delivered late Aug.

All seems well. When I looked a week ago I saw the queen, capped & uncapped brood, capped honey and eggs.

My concerns are that the bees don't seem to be expanding into the new frames as quickly as I'd expected - possibly this is because they are building 'freehand' cone below the nucleus frames and the floor.

My immediate concerns are

1. there seems to be quite a bit of drone brood - how much is too much?
2. I couldn't see any eggs today, but I'm not very good at spotting it and the lights not great today and, finally,
3. when i turned over a couple of the frames, rather clumsily and without managing to keep the frames vertical, alot of bits came out. Is this just pollen or is it something more sinister. Colour was greyish.

Any help greatly appreciated
Hi Catherine,welcome to the forum.

Did the gey bits look anything like in the picture?
Hi Catherine,

I shouldn't be too worried about the quantity of drone brood - they will make what they need naturally. As they move onto the full size frames there will probably be less drone and more worker. Brace comb tends to have more drone cells.

Is That your breakfast again Mark...................................................

Welcome to the forum.

I am pleased your nuc came through the winter OK.

Not much help, I am afraid. Nothing to go on, so just guessing that you may have a problem if the bees are building drone cells on only 5 standard brood frames. nothing else to base anything on. Location, frames of brood, drawn frames, stores, etc.

I would have no idea as to what your expectaions, for them to be expanding into the larger frames, might be.

Need more info. If you have been through to find the queen you must have had the opportunity to note down hive details - an important part of gaining beekeeping experience.

You need a mentor to help you 'on the ground'. Are you a member of your local BKA? If not, I would recommend you make contact soonest. Have you been on a beekeeping course? If not, consider it even at this late stage.

Regards, RAB
Hello Catherine,
Why don't you put on your location and then post asking for a mentor... probably someone will volunteer to at least look at them once. bee-smillie
IF you are somewhere where it is still cold, you could consider putting in dummy boards. Then they would have less air to heat and more energy to do other things.


Did you receive any instructions with the hive or nuc about spring/summer expansion?
Or have you joined an association this year?

A lot of bee keepers feed their colonies to help them expand to draw out new frames with cells for the queen to lay in. If the queen only has a limited amount of cells to lay in and they are filled quickly she can not lay any more eggs so the expansion is very slow.
without sounding like a plonker could it be a laying worker ?

It? Do you mean the queen seen last week? Nah, probably a queen. May be a drone laying queen, may be perfectly OK. Not enough info to say. But not likely a laying worker.

Regards, RAB