Where's the Queen?
The question for every hive that I've inspected is, "Where's the queen?"
Sometimes the queen is marked and that really helps find her. Sometimes she recently emerged and is not marked and for me, that makes it more difficult spot her among the thousand of other bees moving around the frame I'm holding. if you don't find the queen, there are indicators that she is present. There are larvae and capped brood, but the main indicator is standing eggs. My understanding is these were laid in the past day and indicate that there is a queen at least that recently.
Standing egg are hard to see because they are so small and in the bottom of a cell.
Maybe it's time I get a stronger prescription for my glasses instead of these drug store reading glasses I use. I'm determined to improve my queen and egg identification skills
What else I've learned is 17 - 7 - 7. And I hope I have this right...
17 days for a queen to go from egg to emerge from cell. Somewhere in that 17 days are charged and capped queen cells...need to figure those intervals out.
7 more days to take maiden flight and get mated with drones.
7 more days to begin laying eggs.
This timeline helps plan when to go back into a hive to confirm that everything is on track.