Swarm that returned to hive.

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I had one of my hives start to swarm today, they started to settle in a tree today near the hives, then went back into the hive. The queen wasn’t clipped, but I presume she stayed in the hive.
I went into the hive an hour later, did a queen to nuc and took out all the queen cells. I did this because I have 12 queen cells in the incubator, due to emerge on Monday. These are from a much calmer colony. I realise the bees will make more queen cells over the next week. Am I OK to put a virgin queen in early next week? Or should I let the colony get hopelessly queenless and put a mated queen in, in three weeks or so?
Another option is to put a queen cell from the incubator in tomorrow.
 
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Thanks both, I might run the a virgin in, as the cells are from my first go at grafting, just in case some cells don’t emerge. I had another hive I needed to nuc the queen this afternoon, so not a bad way of getting some of my new queens into hives & having the old queen as a backup.
 
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Follow on question, if I add a virgin to the hive on Sunday / Monday, will I need to take out any emergency queen cells they make between today & 6 days time? Or will the virgin queen take care of that. I am thinking I need to do it.
Thank you!
 

OH honey 

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Yesterday one of my 2 hives had brood + eggs and no qc. Other had several QC and no eggs. Couldn't find queen in either but that isn't unusual for me.Both hives v. Full. Knocked down all but 2 qc's assuming some kind of supercedure taking place. Today I found fist sized swarm in a bush. I caught it and reintroduced it to hive without eggs, having first knocked down any remaining QC I could find(2). Rationale is it was probably a virgin so she could exist in hive with her mother, if she is in there ( did she swarm then return?). If not, she'll hopefully go mate and supercede.
Any thoughts ( and let's keep it civil, even if what you think I did is wrong)
 

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Yesterday one of my 2 hives had brood + eggs and no qc. Other had several QC and no eggs. Couldn't find queen in either but that isn't unusual for me.Both hives v. Full. Knocked down all but 2 qc's assuming some kind of supercedure taking place. Today I found fist sized swarm in a bush. I caught it and reintroduced it to hive without eggs, having first knocked down any remaining QC I could find(2). Rationale is it was probably a virgin so she could exist in hive with her mother, if she is in there ( did she swarm then return?). If not, she'll hopefully go mate and supercede.
Any thoughts ( and let's keep it civil, even if what you think I did is wrong)
This is the beginners section. People will be civil.
I’ve no idea what you were trying to achieve but those queen cells were swarm cells. Were they capped?
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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I’ve no idea what you were trying to achieve
I'm struggling to work it out, but just chucking in a random runt swarm and knocking down all the QC's was not a wise move IMHO
why did you assume 'some kind' of supersedure was taking place, especially with all those QC's?
 

OH honey 

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So I discussed what I found with regional bee inspector. His view was a swarm and possibly cast had left hive, main swarm returned, a surprise to me but not uncommon, and the cast, located about 6ft from the hive hadn't. The hive was very full( though room in super and empty frames at each end), didn't look like any bees had left at all. So new queen back in with mum and inspect every few days.
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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The hive was very full( though room in super and empty frames at each end), didn't look like any bees had left at all
It never does within hours of the bees leaving, the space is filled by constantly emerging bees and some returning bees (without the queen) from the swarm that left.
His view was a swarm and possibly cast had left hive, main swarm returned, a surprise to me but not uncommon, and the cast, located about 6ft from the hive hadn't
Only time I've heard of swarms returning is if they had a clipped queen and she crashed and burned so the others came home 'leaderless' so not common and definitely not at all plausible.
I'd like to know where he gets whatever he's smoking from
 

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The hive was very full( though room in super and empty frames at each end), didn't look like any bees had left at all.
This is always the case.
When did you last look in?
If you are doing weekly inspections consider how many new bees have emerged since you did.
 

Swarm 

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So I discussed what I found with regional bee inspector. His view was a swarm and possibly cast had left hive, main swarm returned, a surprise to me but not uncommon, and the cast, located about 6ft from the hive hadn't. The hive was very full( though room in super and empty frames at each end), didn't look like any bees had left at all. So new queen back in with mum and inspect every few days.
I wouldn't even begin to guess. Last year I pulled up and could hear them straight away, bees everywhere in clumps on a few hives and clustering in the brambles. I worked out which hive was to blame and found an opened cell, then I spotted the queen nip around a frame before finding three more cells in the hive that were emerging as I was cutting them out. I caged these and split the queen away to a nuc, by which time the other hives were clear of bees so let's just sort out the hive with frames before working out how to attempt to reach the cluster.
By the time I put the roof on, the cluster had dispersed and returned. The original queen is not clipped so perhaps they just had a rush of blood and forgot to give her the departure time.
 

OH honey 

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It never does within hours of the bees leaving, the space is filled by constantly emerging bees and some returning bees (without the queen) from the swarm that left.

Only time I've heard of swarms returning is if they had a clipped queen and she crashed and burned so the others came home 'leaderless' so not common and definitely not at all plausible.
I'd like to know where he gets whatever he's smoking from
I'll ask him when I tell him of your somewhat disparaging view of a well qualified beekeeper
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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I'll ask him when I tell him of your somewhat disparaging view of a well qualified beekeeper
bits of paper doesn't make one 'well qualified' as is apparent in this case met quite a few bee inspectors in my time and they have ranged from excellent, through mediocre all the way down to oh dear.......
In fact, I'm up at Sand Hutton next week, if he's calling by - we can have a chat
 

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So I discussed what I found with regional bee inspector. His view was a swarm and possibly cast had left hive, main swarm returned, a surprise to me but not uncommon, and the cast, located about 6ft from the hive hadn't. The hive was very full( though room in super and empty frames at each end), didn't look like any bees had left at all. So new queen back in with mum and inspect every few days.
I’m fascinated. Do let us know what happens.
 
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Just a recap from my original thread;
Bees attempted to swarm & went back to hive on 10 June, so I took out all queen cells and did a queen to nuc.
On 17 June, I took out the emergency cells & introduced a virgin queen that had emerged from the incubator the previous day.
Today 20 June, the bees attempted to swarm again, the swirled out, started forming on a tree, then went back into the hive. All in about 15 minutes.
I don’t plan to go back in to the hive, as I shook off every frame looking for queen cells on Friday.
I presume the bees thought they had a queen cell, to leave and either the virgin wouldn’t leave or she did and the swarm got word to go back.
I wondered if I was missing anything or whether anyone has seen a bees change their mind before?
Thank you.
 
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Just a recap from my original thread;
Bees attempted to swarm & went back to hive on 10 June, so I took out all queen cells and did a queen to nuc.
On 17 June, I took out the emergency cells & introduced a virgin queen that had emerged from the incubator the previous day.
Today 20 June, the bees attempted to swarm again, the swirled out, started forming on a tree, then went back into the hive. All in about 15 minutes.
I don’t plan to go back in to the hive, as I shook off every frame looking for queen cells on Friday.
I presume the bees thought they had a queen cell, to leave and either the virgin wouldn’t leave or she did and the swarm got word to go back.
I wondered if I was missing anything or whether anyone has seen a bees change their mind before?
Thank you.
Probably just excitement as the virgin queen goes on her mating flight, that's all
 

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