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The Fight is On

Hive 2

Well, it definitely appears that my weak hive has been taking a beating these last few weeks. After putting the entrance reducer on, things really heated up on the landing area. Bee’s were all over it, all day long yesterday, and it certainly appeared like some fighting was going on. I am guessing that the sugar syrup that I put in there probably increased the aggressor’s desire to get in there and feed.

I am now very worried about my queen. When I broke this hive apart on Sunday, I never found the queen on the frames (but I did not actively search – if she was not easily seen, I went on to the next frame, as (at that time) I was not worried about her, but worried about the general state of things.) But, when I went to brush the bees off of the top board, there were a ball of bees on them. I sort of figured that some stray bee had come along and they were working on him. But, I have seen this ‘balling’ term used a lot when talking about queens. Now I am wondering if they had a queen in there.

To be honest, I have no idea what is going on. Michael Bush wrote an article saying that one way to help a weak hive is to shut off the entrance completely (one night) and see if there are bees outside the next day. If so, those are the robbers. Leave the entrance shut off for a couple of days and the robbers will give up. It is nearly 10 PM and I have tried twice to close that thing off, but the bees on this hive are still on the landing board, milling about. This cannot be a good sign.

Hopefully, I can help them out and rectify this issue. Lesson? When you get a new Nuc, put a daggone entrance reducer on it right off the bat.

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