Did you even know that was a word? I have visions of the Red Queen in Alice of Wonderland being dragged off her throne by her hair. "This kingdom has been requeened."
What was actually requeened this week, was one of my two bee hives. One hive is thriving the other is wasting away. I suspected that I had a lousy "Let them eat cake" queen in that hive, but when I cracked it last week I found it queenless.
Hives without queens dwindle and die. The queen is like the control center of the entire operation. She lays all the eggs and sends out pheromones that keep the gears turning.
I ordered a new leading lady from Rossman's Apiary in South Georgia. They priority mailed her and I got the call from my buddy Wilbur at the post office to come pick up my "bumblebee". I swear they have to think I'm nuts down there, I have mailed roosters and received chicks and "bumblebees". I bring them eggs.
She arrived in her own little cage with several worker bees to care for her. It's hard to tell in this picture, but she's the bigger bee in the very middle. At one end of the cage is a candy plug and a cork. If you just put a new queen in a hive, they will kill her. So you put the whole cage in and let them eat through the candy plug to get to her. By the time they reach her, they are under her pheromone spell and she is free to take the throne, so to speak.
I hope they like her and I hope she does a good job for this hive. They need a good ruler!