On April 8th Hive 1 was repopulated with a split and Hive 2 was repopulated with a swarm.
April 19th: Some wind gusts. Mostly sunny, about 65 degrees
Starting with the southernmost hive-
I’m disappointed to share that while I went to OSVC to split this hive and prevent swarming, I missed it. It took me some time to figure out that a virgin queen had emerged, as there were still 14 ripe queen cells, ready for a queen to have her debut or be killed.
I spent some time ensuring that a queen wasn’t still present. No eggs–and then I heard piping. The hive did in fact swarm. This was a very large colony; this hive had thousands of bees festooning all the way to the back of the hive:
The hive was also just beginning to beard (some sisters are hanging outside of the entrance):
Thanks to this noisy queen I was able to determine that the original queen was gone. I then did a split by taking half of the swarm cells and the needed resources to start a new colony. This split was moved to the same location I got a split from to repopulate Hive 1.
Best wishes to these queens for successful mating flights.
1-2 blank bars
12-14 blank comb with some nectar
All queen cups were empty. This hive his healthy and has room to expand. They are on a nectar flow. Eggs seen. Great brood pattern.
1-2 empty bars
3-5 new comb/brood
6-14 new blank comb
21-27 empty comb
This swarm has gotten cozy and done a lot of work in 11 days. If we stay on a nectar flow long enough this hive could be a honey maker. The new drawn healthy comb is plentiful and beautiful.
These girls were, as Craig would say, medium salsa. It was windy so we will see their true temperament in later hive inspections.
This split is doing great and the queen is continuing to lay well. Eggs seen.
There is an abundance of drawn empty comb in the back of the hive due to this hive having to be repopulated, and the comb never being removed. I may remove and store some if the population doesn’t start to expand quickly (so that comb doesn’t succumb to wax moths etc.)
11-28 drawn empty comb