In my most recent blog post I had forgotten to mention that when I was checking in on the queens one of the combs in the Orchard hive broke. After I finished installing the bees into the Orchard hive the comb must have fallen off of the bar that I had hung the queen cage on. So when I was checking on the queens I found that the comb had been reattached to the divider board that was next to it. The bees are very able to take care of things.
I knew that I was going to need to get back into the hive in order to scrape the comb off of the divider board. I decided that I would take care of it the next time that I was there to check on the queens. I wanted to make sure that I had a plan in place and supplies that I would need.
On April 16th I went back to the hive to scrape off the comb from the divider board of the Orchard hive. I also checked on the queen in the Willow hive. Both of the queens had been released into the colonies. The Willow hive was in good order and did not need any adjustments.
The Orchard hive needed more of my attention. I brought a bag to put the comb in and I planned to use my hive tool to scrape the comb off of the divider board. I took some time to look at the comb and how it was attached to the divider board. The comb was not completely attached to the divider board, so there were bees on both sides of it.
I started scraping the comb very slowly, I did not want to hurt the bees that were on it. I also did not want the comb to just fall off of the divider board. It did not take very long since it was only attached at the top of the comb, but I did end up taking the lives of a few of the bees. One of the bees was larger than the others and I was not sure if it was the queen or not. I did not want to tear through the hive again and disrupt the bees. I closed up the hive and decided to check it again soon.
Of course, I was up all night thinking about the bees. Mostly I was worried that I had squished the queen. I decided that I needed to inspect the hive that day. Once it warmed up enough in the morning, I went out to Old Frog Pond Farm to check on the Orchard hive. I needed the answer to the question that had kept me up through the night.
I went through the hive slowly and carefully. The only bee that I was looking for was the queen. I was so happy when I found her. It was such a relief to know that I had not harmed the queen, but I was sorry that I had harmed any bees in the process. I closed up the hive and breathed a sigh of relief.