We were concerned about our bees after the president of the bee club email about the amount of brood/boxes that should be full already- our first box wasn't full of brood and comb yet and you should expect 2 full boxes by now or nearly so. We were considering her suggestion about re-queening.
Then last night a bear got into them and scattered everything, eating a lot of brood/honey.
We have only a few frames unmolested, but the best ones are licked clean. I think there is still one frame full and some partial ones. That is 1/10 of one box... we should be at 17 to 20 frames nearly full (2 boxes). We got the hive back together, but the hive is really going to be behind now, and we didn't see the queen, although the bees do seem to be sticking around. Very anxious...what is best to do at this point for them (find the queen and hope that starting from scratch is good enough, or just plan to replace the queen? Feed them with the bear issue going on?)We're looking up electric fencing now, but meantime what to plan doing?
" Whether or not they can make it by fall is a tough call without
being able to see how many bees are left, whether or not there is a
queen, how much honey they have now, etc. I think that if there areat least 3 frames of bees left, and they have a queen, and you feedthem, they might make it. So, I'd wait a week, then check for neweggs. If the queen is there, great. If not, and there are at least 3frames of bees, I'd risk buying a queen (though others I know wouldnot, but I just never give up). The key here is feeding them to getthem back up to speed. Of course if there is no queen and you don'treplace her, they won't survive the winter anyway. They may try toraise a new queen if they have eggs to do it with, but they reallydon't have the time to wait. "
So today we'll see what we've got to work with... what THEY'VE got. The little bees are so hard-working, and lord knows we NEED bees. I don't want to see them die over winter.