I managed to dodge the showers to complete the last stage of the swarm control activity with the modified Snelgrove board I started 10 days ago.
I inspected the queen raiser brood box and found six capped queen cells, of which three were reasonably sized. So kept one, cut out two others for the apideas and discarded the remainder. Didn’t take long and so the bees didn’t get chilled.
I had opened the entrances on the apideas this morning so it was fairly straightforward to put the sealed queen cells in. However, I obtained a laying queen from somebody uniting two small colonies and put this into one of the apideas instead of the queen cell. I used a Butler cage to introduce the queen in. Not sure how long the queen will tolerate the small mini nuc, so will need to think about setting up a proper nuc when the weather improves.
The other colony at the Mole apiary site had started a new batch of queen cells. With the weather being poor I decided to take the queen out with 3 frames of brood and stores plus bees shaken from one additional comb into a nuc and bring it home. As the bees don’t have much stores I put a contact feeder on. I will have to inspect the parent colony in nine-ten days to select a queen cell. I guess if the apideas don’t succeed with the current queen and queen cell then I will have some more queen cells to use.