So Todd had swarms #8, 9 and 10! He can tell that story but somehow in the aftermath there was a homeless virgin queen. So we decided to put her in the laying worker colony and see if she could turn them around.
When I got home with the queen, which had been nicely packaged in a queen cage with 2 attendants, it was thunderstorming. Rain! Wind! Lightning! Under those circumstances I figured it was just best to lay the cage on top of the frames and get out of Dodge.
I went back this evening and she was still alive. The colony workers pretty much seemed uninterested. They would crawl across the cage but they weren’t obsessed with her destruction. The original plan was to shake out the bees and then release the queen. I shook one frame and got stung. That was enough for me and I decided to release her immediately. First I gave her a red mark and then let her walk into the frames.
As far as I could tell, the bees seemed to accept her — at least not kill her immediately. So time will tell. I’ll try to leave these bees alone for about a month.