Episode-184- Track Bee Troubles In Honey Bee Hive B – Supersedure

  • April 28, 2013 – See the Queen but no eggs
  • May 1, 2013 – See the Queen but no eggs

I think I got a problem with Honey Bee Hive B but I could not be sure so I had to take a look inside to see if I had a good laying queen. This  is the colony that I applied the formic acid strip to in early April to combat a Varroa Destructor infestation and I have been keeping an eye on the bees since. What you will see is evidence of a poor laying queen. I give credit to Howland Blackiston of BeeCommerce.com and author of Beekeeping For Dummies for the styile in which I inspect the hive and what I should look for. However, I do not do everything he suggests when problems such as a poor laying arise.

Instead I try to let the bee decide what needs to be done even though when I see a problem I want to rush with a rescue plan for them. I have had to learn more than just plain honey bee and honey production techniques. If I replace the poor laying queen seen in this first part of my experience diagnosing supersedure then what would prevent me from doing it again and again in hopes of telling the bees what they need.

They can see they have a poor laying queen but they are very calm during the two visits this video depicts. So I see a queen on both visits and I see larvae and the bees are calm. Why worry? Sure I could mix things up and get a new queen for $50(includes shipping) but I’m not in this for the honey and if the bees don’t make it they don’t make it. The result is a cleaner and leaner gene pool versus one stressed to live beyond its normal means by yours truly. It was hard to fight the urge to fix this and not buy a queen but I have not bought a new one and the upcoming Part 2 will show what the result of my inaction has been.

The next logical step for the resiliency of my apiary is to raise healthy local queens and I have a ways to go to get there but if this hive pulls through then my methods of leaving the bees to their own means has some validity. Things do get worse and not just with this colony. Stay tuned to see how it goes and thank you for following along.


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