Went out today to do my first hive inspection (ever). Bee package was installed a week ago and when my husband went to retrieve the queen cage (several days ago), he said there were a couple dead bees in it (none marked as queen), but he could not find the queen and he didn’t think the bee candy looked like it had been eaten away enough for any bees to pass through. But the queen was not in the cage, he said, and the dead bees that he did see were not the queen.
So on to a few days later… Being worried about whether we have a queen or not, we decided to do a hive inspection and try to see what was going on. Long story short, despite watching probably a hundred videos warning NOT to do this, I tipped the frame and the comb dropped out.
From the inspection I was able to do, I was able to see plenty of nectar, but I was looking for eggs and I think that all I was looking at was glistening from the nectar. It’s hard to say, as there were many bees covering the comb. I did not see any cells that were capped.
I put the empty frame back into the give and did as my husband suggested and put the comb that had fallen off just outside the entrance of the hive. But I have concerns about that. I have heard that leaving comb out can encourage robbing behavior or attract pests.
This all happened this morning, only an hour ago. If anyone can advise as to what I should do, I would appreciate it. I feel terrible about having undone all that hard work of the bees, and I want to do whatever I can to try to help the bees recover from the damage I have done. My primary concern is that we have left the comb (full of sticky nectar) right outside the opening of the hive. My husband’s thinking was that the bees will take care of it. And he may be right about that. But I do still have the concerns that I’ve mentioned above, and if what we have done is problematic, I would like to address it as soon as possible.