One easy way to test that your suit is indeed bee proof is to simply knock over your hive. I find this gets the bees rather worked up and in fighting spirits. In my attempt today to confirm or deny Knives’ status, my hive slipped off the hive stand. Luckily there were only 3 medium supers remaining on the hive at the time, and I was able to use my cat-like reflexes to catch it before it tumbled to the ground. I had a heck of a time getting the hive wrestled back on the stand which was made slightly more difficult with a bunch of angry bees in my face.
The good news in all of this is my new suit’s reputation for being bee proof came through with flying colors. I obviously do not advocate kicking over your hive to test the integrity of your suit, but I’m trying to find the silver lining in today’s almost disaster.
I also believe I confirmed that my hive is indeed queenless. I had tons of drawn out frames with nothing in them. Considering it has been 30 days since I last saw eggs, it has been long enough that a new queen could have been raised and laying.
It was fortunate that my new queen arrived today. I first wanted to replace my existing hive stand with something more stable. The stand was nice, but the plastic made it very easy for the hive to move around when pulling off supers which is what caused the almost disaster today.
First, I broke down the hive.
After I removed all the supers, I was able to take the old stand away and lay down two cinder blocks and level them. I then put the hive back together again to introduce the new queen. Here is the new queen attached to a frame ready to go.
I then added the frame to the hive. I’m hoping the hive will quickly accept her, free her from the cage, and she can start pumping out some brood.