Checking on a 5 frame nuc I made up in hopes it would produce a queen.

Made a 5 frame nuc on 4-29-2012 at my Ada apiary and was able to check on them today. The day after I made the split the night time temperature fell into the low 30°F. It was apparent that I did not have enough bees to cover the 3 frames of brood I added to the nuc. I had hoped the bees would have made a new queen and that the brood had mostly hatched. I could see that there was a good amount of brood that the bees had started to uncap and remove from the hive. There were 8 queen cups started, 5 of which where along the bottom of one frame. The other 3 were close together at the middle of the frame. Only one cup appeared to have anything in it as it was the only one that bees would constantly enter. However, I was not able to see any larva in the cup.

I added another frame of bees and open brood to the nuc in hopes that they would have enough eggs or young larvae to start a new queen if the one cell they had not not amount to anything. It will be much warmer at night  now so I hope they brood does not get chilled this time around.

All my hives have small hive beetles in them. I am only seeing a couple of beetles in each hive now. Even the two nuc boxes have at least one beetle in them. I was able to crush what I saw. I did see one hive with bees working on removing beetles. Two bees worked together to surround the beetle and fly out of the hive on their sides. I am sure the beetles just ended up flying back into the hive later.

The weaker of the two nucs had a small ant invasion. Apparently the ants had made an attempt to hide in the hive away from the active bees. When I opened up the nuc to check on things, the ants ran and the bees soon noticed them. I saw two bees removing one ant from the hive. I thought the bees looked odd removing the ant so I took a closer look. One bee had the ant balled up and was attempting to remove the ant. The ant in turn had its mandibles stuck into the rear end of a bee and would not let go. So we had a bee with an ant holding on to it with another bee attempting to remove the ant from the other bee. They eventually succeeded in removing the ant.

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