After the introduction of those expensive breeder queens went wrong and the split made for them raised their own queen, I finally got to check on them today. I told myself to sit on my hands for 4 weeks! But now I wanted to see how thex did. And they really DID something!
My selfmade Two-Appartment-House (made of a 10 frame box, I didn’t have a nuc box by then) was not able to hold 5 frames per section, so I had to leave that large gap having 4 frames in the split. They filled the gap with really beautiful natural comb, which was then filled with pollen and nectar. Thanks to this forum I knew what to do and rubberbanded it to an empty frame. Well, it SOUNDS easy, rubberband it to an empty frame, but after being able to losen it from the box wall in one piece, it bent in my hands and fell, so it finally did brake into 3 pieces. Very few bees drowned in nectar to my surprise. But the rubber bands and all that were not so easy to handle with the leather gloves, that soon became sticky and gooey… But that’s my result:
I think that should to the job, right? Would be a shame for the girls to lose all that precious pollen they stored. You can see the follower board I put in. I thought it might be a little too much of a good thing to transfer them from 4 to 10 frames at once.
Little queenie is indeed a big girl, she showed up on the very first frame I pulled. Thank every higher force there might be that I didn’t roll her in the act, it was very tightly packed with bees! She went into the marker cage with only a little persuation (I’m not ready to just grab and pick up a bee with my fingers…).
And off she goes, diving into her home, surrounded by her girls, who started cleaning her right away. The marking plate ended up on her head in the first attempt, because she moved around in the cage when the glue was still fresh, so she managed to push the plate from her back to her head. But I was able to adjust it and I hope the glue on her head doesn’t affect her too much.
Her brood nest seems very fine to my, only that there was not much space left for her to lay. Highest time to give them more room, I think.
I put the new, empty frames on both sides of the brood nest, then the fixed up “burr comb” frame and then another empty frame. I’ll give them more frames by taking out the follower as soon as the empty frames are drawn. Hope this will work out and result in good, straight combs (as it did before in all the other hives).