I have no idea how the queen ended up on the ground in front of a different hive 2 hives over. She must had somehow gotten on me. I had spotted her when I looked at her hive and I alway try to hold the frames over the hive so if bees fall they go back into hive. Prior to the inspection I had removed the qe from under the hive since it had been a week since installing the package (since I lost my first package from absconing, I did one package with an qe under and one without but both with lemongrass oil in the hive). I closed the hive up and inspected the second hive that never had a qe. I spotted their queen, saw some uncapped brood, and closed it up.
My third hive I had started a merge with some other bees the day before and not all the bees got into the box. So I was admiring the small clusters hanging on the outside smelling their buddies closed up in the top box seperated by newspaper. There was lots of activity at the entrance but no fighting that I could tell. The top feeder had leaked over night and soaked the newspaper but I don’t think they had chewed through yet.
So anyway, I looked down and saw a queen which really confused me. I wondered if a virgin queen had come in the package I was merging. So like I said I frantically reopened the other 2 hives to see if I could find their queens. In the mean time, I picked up the queen (she acted like she couldn’t fly) on the ground and took her over to the hive I suspected she came from. 50/50 chance, if I was wrong I would be short a queen. I eventually found the queen from the hive that I thought still had theirs and could not find the queen from the hive I suspcted she came from.
In the mean time I had put the queen near the entrance to the hive I guessed she belonged to to see how they treated her. They emmediately started to cluster on her, more and more as time went on. They were slowly coming out of the hive. It didn’t look like they were trying to hurt her. I felt I had limited time to decide. I eventualy put her on top of the hive. A few bees immediately surrounded her but only looked like they were kissing her and not hurting her. She soon decided to go down between some frames and no bees seemed to follow or mind.
Is it safe to assume that the way the hive acted with her that I got it right? I am sure she didn’t come from the other hive since I saw their queen. Do queens ever fly around be themselves? Why did she have trouble flying ?