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A couple of weeks back we had an incident with the Remuera 1 hive. We were inspecting frames and the queen must have fallen from the it. When we were cleaning up after the inspection, we noticed a large cluster of bees gathered on the ground and then to our horror we noticed the queen among them.
I had my moving hive big gloves on, which are completely useless for picking up individual bees. We tried to get the queen to walk on my glove and guide her back to her kingdom. In the end we were pretty sure that she had returned to hive. But we must have been mistaken.
For alas dear readers today we discovered the hive is now queenless, these events may not be related but I’m pretty sure they are.
The hive had no brood at all, other hives checked today still have around four or five frames of brood. I sensed something wrong the other day when all hives were busy on a sunny day, except this hive. You tell a lot from watching your hives.
When I opened them up the hive has lots of bees. But they have lost their Spirit or mana and seem sad. The sugar syrup we had given them a couple of weeks back was also untouched. But that could be because they have loads of stores and don’t need it.
So what to do?
There are not many drones around at this time of the year. So I think getting them to create a new queen this close to winter would fail. We did spot some used queen cells in the hive. So we may be lucky and have a virgin queen. But I think this wishful thinking. Margaret wants to wait until Monday to check again for new brood.
If we get no brood on Monday, I recommend we merge the hive with the Rangitiri 1 hive. Who have a strong queen, but not many resources. Whereas the Remuera 1 hive has over seven full frames of honey. So this marriage would be good for both hives.
What would you do in this situation? Comment below please…