Had about ten minutes between this afternoons removal and dinner so we quickly went into the three nuc hives that had capped queen cells. We found that all three of these colonies had a virgin queen roaming around inside the hive. First is the Dartmoth hive. Remember a while back we took away the queen from this small swarm and Susan of Berkeley adopted the queen to introduce to her queenless TBH colony. Well, we kept giving this colony frames of eggs, they made emergency queen cells and some looked really good but nothing ever materialized from it. So during the Terrace colony removal, we got two queen cells, the uncapped one came into this hive and below is our new virgin queen. These small new queens sure can run around fast before they are mated.
Second virgin queen bee is the Bretmoor A hive. The original queen swarmed onto my orange tree just last week. We hived that swarm easily. Left about six swarm cells in the hive. This one hatched and must have destroyed the other 2 cells. We split this hive and moved three other capped queen cells into another nuc. Can you spot her? Kind of hard to spot her in the picture below as she’s pretty small right now. Once she mates she’s going to be huge.
And the third virgin queen. And for sure still a virgin. This was the split with three capped queen cells. Either she was poorly attended to in her uncapped stages or mites got to her as she’s wingless! No wonder why she was walking around so slowly. I’m going to take a closer look at her over the weekend and then pinch her and provide them with a frame of eggs to hopefully make a few more emergency queens.