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Another Queen is born in the observation hive

Even virgins attract an entourage - for a while.

Even virgins attract an entourage – for a while.

It hasn’t been all plain-sailing in the observation hive this summer. The first queen swarmed, the second queen seemed to disappear on her mating flight, but we now have a third having given the colony a frame of eggs and larvae to work with.

They say that small colonies won’t produce good queens and I don’t doubt this as a general rule, but this one is looking just fine though she hasn’t mated yet.

She became easily visible two days ago, but over the past 24 hours she has become very hard to find. last year, the struggles of a virgin queen around the colony were obvious. And now the new queen in the hive has exchanged an entourage for a barrage of bees. It seems that the bees may now becoming impatient for her to go on her mating flight/s and are making life uncomfortable in the hive until she does.

But here’s a curious thing: even though she hasn’t yet mated, she is going through the motions of egg-laying. I noticed this with the first queen that swarmed too. The egg laying motion would seem to be a hard-wired action from birth.

Turlough, Vita’s Guest Beekeeper Blogger

 

 

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