I re-queened two of my hives today, as the bees in those hives were becoming more and more ‘protective’ of the garden, head butting and following right up to the back door.
I re-queened them with Carniolan bees – the Carniolan bee is calm and non-aggressive, used to obtain honey and other bee products in populated areas, and is therefore ideal for back garden hives.
One hive was straightforward, as I had split the hive, and know it was hopelessly queen less, the other was a bugger, as I have never been able to find the queen in two years of looking. I needed up having to shake the bees down through a queen excluder to find her, but it still took almost an hour to find the little bugger.
Within 4 – 6 weeks, all the existing bees should have died off (Honey bees only have a life span of approx 6 weeks) and I should be left with the offspring of the new queens, which should make being around the garden a more pleasant experience.