Went into the big hive yesterday, hoping to see that the blonde swarm had mixed in nicely. Alas, this was not so. No big blonde queen, no light workers, but, we did see someone else.
If you look closely, you can see bits of paint around her thorax, from last year. The old queen was there all along. I don't feel terribly, as I'm not the only experienced beekeeper who missed her and any evidence of her over many hive inspections. So.
The nice swarm is dead, and I'm sad about that. There are, however, two swarms boiling around and I think I can manage to combine everything down to only three hives in my yard. That's all I can handle.
I don't even want to detail the experiment of yesterday which seems like a dismal failure. Maybe after it's all resolved I'll get it written up.
On the upside, I harvested about 30 pounds of light spring flow honey yesterday.
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