It’s been 8 days since my last inspection and it’s my 3rd this year. The main aim of my inspections today is to check for signs of swarming preparations, and also hopefully to find and mark my last unmarked queen who has eluded me since July last year.
The first hive is the one with the unmarked queen. There were a few bees in the super, but very little nectar had been stored up there yet. In the brood box the queen had laid in 9 frames the outer 2 now the main store frames. All stages of brood were noticed in the second frame, and a few drones were seen. No sign of queen cells and no action necessary to ease congestion. Unfortunately I failed to find the queen.
Hive 2 had bees in the second super, but as yet are only filling the first super. In the brood box the queen had laid in the inner face of the outer frames, so brood on 11 frames. The marked queen was quickly found on the 2nd frame.
Again a few drones were seen.
Hive 3 had a few bees in the super, but again little being stored yet. The brood box needed one frame of stores replacing with a drawn frame, giving the queen extra space to lay. The queen wasn’t seen, however eggs were seen. Drones also present in this hive.
I uncapped approximately 15 drone cells and found 1 varroa mite. Will have to do a more thorough check next time.