Went out to check on my big hive out on the ranch today. Getting a little bit worried about them. Now that they don't have the medium hive to rob, they aren't doing as much. They haven't touched the top super at all, not even to draw out a frame. Just nothing. The lower supers still have plenty of capped brood and some honey stores, but they seem to have stalled out. I don't think we will get any honey from them this year.
The medium hive has been back at the house for a month now. They really picked up once they were away from the big hive. The queen still has a pretty spotty brood pattern, but they were hatching today so the empty ones might be from brood hatching. I actually got to watch one of the girls emerge from her cell today. She came out all fluffy and a pretty pale yellow. Her stripes were a pale yellowish gray. Very fun to see. This hive has loads of honey stores, lots of brood and new bees. I am going to have to get another box on that hive ASAP. THIS one might produce some honey this year :)
The nuc is doing alright, but it has only been a month since I got the queen and stole some brood from the big hive to get her going. I noticed a worker coming in this morning with her pollen baskets clear full of a pale pollen. They also had some bees hatching today. I didn't see the queen but I am pretty sure she was on the far outside frame. The bees on that frame were clustered in a certain spot so I am guessing that's where the queen is. This hive produces very dark almost black bees. The queen is carnolian/caucasian cross and you can tell a big difference between the bees that she has hatched vs the bees I gave her. These bees are not as aggressive and are fairly easy to work. When I gave brood to her, I only had smaller frames and I was hoping they would have drawn out the only two deep frames they have but it has not happened yet. Once they do, and the queen starts laying eggs in those, I am hoping to phase out the shallower frames and replace them with deeper ones. Not exactly sure how I am going to to this, but I will figure it out.
I just hope I get some sort of a honey harvest this year and enough I can give the ranchers who were nice enough to let me put my bees in their field. They even picked out the perfect spot for them.