When I inspected my hives this past weekend I found three of them appeared queenless. All three had the brood box full of frames of completely empty comb - no eggs, no capped brood, no brood of any kind. I didn't see a queen in any of the boxes, although I am not the best queen-spotter. Here are the three stories:
1. Hive 1
Swarm hive combo of two swarm hives - combo made 2 weeks ago. They never chewed through the newspaper and there were battles outside the hive. Probably were two queens and both were killed
Now for the past three nights in the pouring rain from Fay (so this isn't a beard - it isn't hot and it's pouring) the hive looks like this:
What are they doing and what should I do?
2. Hive 2
Started from 2008 nuc hive: two solid boxes of honey, tons of bees in all boxes - absolutely no brood of any shape or form and no queen - hot hive
I've ordered a queen from Rossman who should arrive tomorrow or Wednesday - figured I'd try to help them make it since there are so many bees.
3. Hive 3
Another started from 2008 nuc hive - 1 1/2 boxes of honey, bottom box all cleaned out cells, no brood of any kind, no eggs, etc. diminished number of bees.
I combined with newspaper the brood box from hive 3 with another good hive on my deck. Used newspaper. Didn't do a good combination because I left a box of mostly honey - some brood - between the two boxes. The bees still appear quite separate four days later but there is no battle going on.
I intended to do something with the two boxes with frames of honey in them but it has poured for several days from Fay and couldn't get back to the bees during nonworking hours. Many bees still surround these two honey boxes. This is how they looked tonight:
What do I do with these bees who don't really have a place to live. I removed the bottom box which was a 10 frame to make the combination so the 8 frame honey boxes are sitting cattywumpus on the bottom board.
Help! Help! Help! I am drowning in bee problems.
Linda T desperate in Atlanta