Adding packaged bees to hive - Newbie mistakes!

So, I am a novice. I attempted to put my bee package in the hive about an hour ago. I made the mistake of opening the wrong end of the queen box - yep, dumb I know. Anyway, I had her in the box and quickly dumped the bees in on top of her. I then replaced the 2 frames I had removed. Unfortunately, the queen box had fallen to the bottom - was she still in it? I don’t know. Since I was afraid she was loose, I quickly put the roof back on. I couldn’t get all the bees out of the package so left it on the ground below the hive opening. I just went out to check and there are a large group of bees in the package…not sure how many are in the hive. Should I open the hive again and try to dump the bees from the package or leave them and see if they find their way into the hive? It will be dark here in 20 minutes.

Hi Annie, and welcome! I installed my first package of bees a couple of weeks ago, so I’m not one of the experienced voices on this forum. However, I would suggest that you let them be for now. In a few days you can check on them to see how they’re doing. If the queen is in there, they’ll either accept her or they won’t. But there’s nothing more you can do tonight, except sit back and enjoy the sunset!

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Thanks Claire. Just a wait and see for now. I knew immediately I had made a mistake. I just hope the bees in the package make it up to the hive. I appreciate your reply. And the sunset was worth it!


I agree with @claire_c’s comment, although my answer is a bit late for you. :blush:

I would have a look at the package container again tomorrow. If it is empty, leave the hive alone for about 5 days or so to give them a chance to get established. If there are a ton of live bees in it, then open the hive and dump them in, but I wouldn’t do that unless there are hundreds of bees in the transport container, and they are alive. :wink:

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