Having checked super, there is honey being produced and thankfully, no sign of brood
or “Houdini” queen. A smaller Queen Excluder seemed to do the trick. Hubby and
I cut down the very tall grass to keep entrances clear.
With advice from “M”, Hubby and I checked the two brood boxes below the Queen Excluder,
as it was advisable to put back to one brood box. (Reminder: two weeks ago, we could
not find Queen, but knew she was in one of two brood boxes after her daring escape
from a Queen Excluder with larger gaps, hence, we put the two brood boxes below a
new Queen Excluder with smaller gaps.) Today, we found the Queen, thankfully, after
the disaster two weeks ago, she is alive. We made sure she was in the single brood
box this time and we moved the 2nd brood box so that it was above the Queen Excluder.
The brood will hatch and the bees will use this to make the honey which I should
be able to extract.
After checking another hive that “M” had created from Sharon’s excess of bees, we
were looking for Queen cells to see if the Workers had created a new Queen. (Apparently,
this can be done within 3 days of an egg being produced.) There were a lot of Drone
cells in this new hive, and we performed Drone sacrifice, where some of the comb
with (Drone) brood, was cut off the bottom of a super frame. An uncapping fork was
used to take out some of the brood to check for Varroa. We only found one of the
larvae with a Varroa mite, which indicates that the Varroa treatment has been working.
Although this was not pleasant, “M” pointed out, there were plenty of Drones and
they would only eat the workers’ stores. It is for the good of the bees, although,
some beekeepers prefer other methods.