Did a removal today in Westwego, Louisiana, for an older Cajun fellow, sorry didn't take pictures. The hive was at last 3 yrs old and had good honey stores, in fact we filled two medium sized ice chests with the honey comb. The guy was quite interesting and will really miss the bees. He believes the people across the street from him ratted on him about his shed (where the bees were) being in a state of disarray. The neighbors I don't believe even knew he had bees. Well, anyway, because of the time of yr, I didn't know what we'd find, numbers wise, honey wise, or brood wise so I showed up with a nuc. Its the best choice for a transfer, generally speakng this time of yr. Found a decent bit of brood, and the queen was laying a pretty tight pattern. No drones.
The guy was real interested in the process, and watched me do most of the removal. Of course he asked me several times if I saw the queen or got her. I told him not yet, that I may have her already in the box, and if not we'll get her late in the game which is usually how it works out. Well after all the brood comb was secured in the nuc and all the honey comb was set aside, I was left with approx. 400 bees or so in a little vertical grouping. He was right there with me looking for that queen. I told him what to look for and that her abdomen would be much larger than the worker's and most likely a golden color. I looked to the side for a second and he spotted her before I did, he was thrilled! It took us three tries to catch her because of the amount of bees that wanted to surround her,but we got her,a big juicy one. Every thing went well and the nuc is still over there, which I'll bring back home probably Thursday or Friday. It's nice when things work out. Oh, the bees were extremely docile. Have a good one, JP.