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Dead queen after going from frames to TBH

 
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oerdnj
New Bee


Joined: 09 Jul 2018
Posts: 2
Location: Czechia

PostPosted: Mon Jul 09, 2018 8:40 pm    Post subject: Dead queen after going from frames to TBH Reply with quote

Hi,

here's a new beekeeper from Czechia. I have four new hives and I might have accidentally killed a queen in one of them when I was converting the frames I bought to the TBH.

Unfortunately, I only found after the converting 3 hives that the queen should be caught and not shaken from the frame to the hive, and when I was inspecting the hives today to check whether the queens are OK, I haven't found the queen (she is marked, but it was quite dark already). Also the bees were behaving differently from the others - they were less active than the others.

I would appreciate an advice on what to do next: merge the bees into other 3 colonies, buy a new queen or wait if they raise new emergency queen (here I might re-check the hive during daylight whether there are some brood cells that could be used).

Thank you for any advice.
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catchercradle
Golden Bee


Joined: 31 May 2010
Posts: 1523
Location: Cambridge, UK

PostPosted: Mon Jul 09, 2018 9:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My instinct is that if you have comb with eggs and young larvae, to wait and let them raise a new queen. (I have yet to buy a queen and have always let the bees make one for themselves, occasionally transferring a frame or bar with eggs and young larvae if they don't have that already.)

Dave
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Barbara
Site Admin


Joined: 27 Jul 2011
Posts: 1749
Location: England/Co.Durham/Ebchester

PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2018 8:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi and welcome

A few things occur to me from your post.....

If it was getting dark when you did your inspection of that hive, the bees will behave differently. They become irritated and fly out and stick to you and will usually make more noise as the light fades. It is best to wait until you can inspect in the middle of the day or at least earlier in the evening. Having the sun on your back so that it shines over your shoulder and into the cells that you are inspecting, enables you to see the contents of the cell more clearly and makes the job so much easier.

How long is it since you did the transfer from frames to TBH? Did you see any open brood (ie eggs or larvae) in that hive? Queens can be quite shy and will sometimes manage to run from one comb to another or be on the hive wall when you are doing an inspection and you miss her. Looking for eggs and larvae that indicate the presence of a queen is an easier way of confirming her status.

How many frames were transferred to each hive? Is there a hive that is doing particularly well that you can use to donate a comb of brood containing eggs and young larvae to the hive you are concerned about..... make sure the queen is not on that donated comb? Only do this if the hive in question has no eggs or young larvae and only if the donor hive has 5 or more combs of brood.

Like Dave (catchercradle), I have never bought a queen in 20 years of beekeeping and prefer to allow the bees to raise their own.

Best wishes

Barbara
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oerdnj
New Bee


Joined: 09 Jul 2018
Posts: 2
Location: Czechia

PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 12:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for the advices.

The reason I was inspecting the bee at the sunset is because I was told that it's a high season for robbing and I shouldn't open the hives during the day.

I transferred five frames into each hive and it's about two weeks after converting the hives.

Unfortunately, I left for a business trip until 21st, so the thorough inspection of the hive during the day will have to way until I am back. Hopefully, they will survive, then I can check the hive for larvae.

I don't have any hive so strong to have 5 brood frames yet, so if the hive in question struggles, perhaps it might be best course of action to merge them into the other hives?
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