I believe Knives’ hive may now be Knives-less. I inspected the hive this past weekend and didn’t see any sign of the queen and, more importantly, no signs of eggs either. I didn’t see any the previous weekend, but my inspection was cut short by a rain shower before I got too deep into the hive.
Here’s a shot of me in my fancy new Ultra Breeze suit going frame by frame looking for some sign of a laying queen.
My only other thought is perhaps the hive swarmed and the new queen hasn’t started laying yet. I did checkerboard the hive in late February, but perhaps that didn’t do the trick to suppress the swarm instinct.
Luckily, I have a new queen coming next week so all his not lost with Knives. After the Large Marge incident, I decided it was best to go ahead and requeen this hive with known gentle stock. I should get one more inspection in this weekend to hopefully confirm or deny if my hive is queenright. If I do find eggs, I can look forward to the fun task of finding an unmarked queen to “retire” before introducing the new queen. Otherwise, I can be fairly certain I can requeen with a minimal of fuss.
4 responses to “The best-laid plans of bees and men…”
Are there any hatched queen cells? If not another option could be that they are slimming Knives down ready for swarming. This will make her easy to miss and also stop her laying temporarily as a result of her reduced diet.
I didn’t see any hatched queen cells, but I may have missed them. My new queen is supposed to be here next week so I’m doing one more thorough inspection this weekend to verify the state of this hive.
How is the new bee suit? Is it worth the $$? I’ve been eyeing it but, dang, that’s a lot of money.
It is super nice. The weave pattern really lets the suit breathe which will be nice come the hot Texas summer months. I also feel more bee proof in this suit than in my old one.