All the bees in our Warre have sadly died. The warre had an established colony – this year would have been its third full year. There is no sign of disease, and there is honey left inside, in the top box -about 2kg. We think they swarmed last year – they are on an allotment site and as we are not there all the time we are not 100% sure. The colony only ever occupied the top two boxes. Any suggestions? There were no signs of emergency queen cells or any queen cells at all.
My other question is, one of the Warre boxes is full of combe of a mid brown colour. This combe was in the second box down and is 95% empty of honey – there is a bit at the top of some of the combe. Presuming we can find a swarm this year, would they re-use this combe (as it represents such an energy saving ), or am I better to empty the hive and let them start afresh?
I am based in Bristol, UK