Queen Cells: If at first you don’t succeed.

“In our response lies our growth and our freedom,” Victor Frankl

Yesterday’s hive inspections couldn’t have been worse (well anything can get worse but it was bad).  The sky was sunny but the temperature was a cool 56F degrees with winds around 20mph. The weekend will been even colder and with lots of rain, so it was now or never.

As one can imagine, the bees were quite cantankerous, to say the least. In fact, they were down right pissed. Given that it was so cool, I put my Carheart jacket on, thinking it would be a fine bee coat given its elastic waist and cuffs. I was wrong!

The bees seemed to know right where to attack. They actively targeted my wrist and waist in droves. I could actually feel them rolling my sleeves back and I am fairly certain I heard battle cries and a little laughter.

Well, I knew they would be that way, given the weather and the fact they were queenless, so I should have worn a full suit. Oh well.

Only one of the three Queen Cells I placed Saturday seemed to have made it – and even that one is questionable. I had cut the three cells from a plastic frame and in doing so, I had opened the back of the cells and not left enough surrounding wax to attach the cell to the new frame.

Two of the cells were just gone. The third cell was laying in the bottom of Hive-E and the bees had secured it to the bottom board.

The solution was to leave Hive-E as it was and see if the queen emerges. Hive-E had a lot of bees and honey, so if this doesn’t work, then I will just place more eggs in it in a week or so.

In Hive-D, we placed a new frame of eggs from Hive-L (Hive-L is the smallest hive and therefore, the easiest to find eggs).

Hive-A got a Queen Cell from Hive-G. This was a very good cell since it came from a wood frame and I could cut a big chunk of extra wax to help secure the cell in the new frame. Though I mashed a lot of worker larva – ick!

Now the bees will be given a week to do what they do. We’ll see what happens. Nonetheless, all the hives are packed with bees and doing well.

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