I have just had a look at my Warre hive and noticed in the end comb of the topbox that the bees are building a number of new queen cells. I didn’t count them all as I was looking through the observation window, but it looked as if there were at least 6 different peanut-shaped capped cells of different sizes.
I’m sure this is a massive subject but can someone let me know why bees would be raising new queens, and also in so many cells? I wondered if the old queen was getting on a bit, running low on sperm to fertilise new eggs or some other reason. I heard that conventional beeks try to remove these when they see them. Is this to control swarming?
I know I’m not going to find out why these particular bees are doing this, but it would help me to understand bees more fully if someone could help me get a sense of what makes bees raise new queens.
Graham, Reading Berkshire