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Black drones in Italian hive

I have two hives, both recently re-queened (early October) … one with a purchased queen from NSW and one with a hive-raised queen. In the three weeks or so since my last inspection, when all was normal, I am suddenly seeing a lot of large jet black drones entering the hives. I am assuming these black drones are carniolan. I know this can be a consequence of the queen mating with numerous drones and had both queens been purchased from the same breeder I would have assumed this to be the reason – except these black drones seem to be at home in two hives with Italian queens of quite different origin. Could they have come from another hive in the neighbourhood? If so, how would they have been accepted? Are there other possibilities?

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Indeed they could. Drones are routinely tolerated from other hives, if the host hive has enough food supplies. :wink:


Interesting Dawn, I did not know that!

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Interesting! I wonder what you mean by routinely tolerated?

I mean that they are usually tolerated by any hive that has plenty of resources. However, with africanized hives, all bets are off. Same with any hive short of honey/brood etc :wink: