Oxford Bees

Fear

Submitted by will on Mon, 18/07/2016 - 07:16

There are times when I'm scared of the bees.

Two of my hives contain very large colonies and, this season, they've been unhappy when I've looked inside. They've also been unhappy when I've watched from over 2 metres away - a bee will investigate and then attack. This is new behaviour from my home hive and fear is a new feeling for me.

The defensive behaviour of Hive A might be due to the time of year but I suspect that they've replaced their Queen. Her temperament should be the same as before but she may have mated with a drone with a more defensive temperament.

Bee Roar

Submitted by will on Mon, 18/07/2016 - 06:09

Hive A was roaring last night. It had been a hot day* - maybe up to 30C - so I think that they were just cooling the hive. My concern is that they may be queenless.

* hot for England. We're supposed to be temperate in every way.

An interregnum

Submitted by will on Mon, 18/07/2016 - 05:25

I looked into Hive B a few days ago and found no brood and no Queen. The colony is quite small so she probably wasn't hiding.

Is there a virgin Queen waiting to take over? That would be reasonable following the supersedure which I saw in progress at the start of the month. I will have to look again to see whether brood returns. What happens if the colony is unable to create a new Queen? I'm unsure.