The opening went well. S.D. quickly found the empty queen cage, and pulled the frames so I could shot them.The bees were very calm. They really didn't pay us much attention at all, and continued drawing out comb while we were looking. At least 5 of the frames had some wax on them. All five had lots of very busy bees. Everything looked good and we had the hive closed back up in less than five minutes.
Then it was time to review the footage and find the queen. According to the books and the pros, she'll stand out because she is slightly longer than the worker bees with her abdomen extending beyond her wing tips, and she'll be surrounded by a group of attendant bees. And that's it. She doesn't even the have decency to wear a red and white hat. We've spent a good while pouring over the photos. We've seen lots of comb being drawn. Some of the cells look really deep. I think I've seen a few eggs. S.D. thinks I'm crazy. Neither of us, however, thinks we've found the queen. She could be anywhere, she could even be underneath that mass of insect bodies.
|This is the queen cage still attached.|
|The white stuff, in the hexagon pattern - that's wax they've added.|
Now we'll wait another two week before going back in to see if there are brood cells. (Baby bees).