General observations of the bees, the comings and goings, activities near the entrance of the hive can tell me a lot about what is going on with the colony.
In this photo you can clearly see a worker bee (centre of frame) bringing pollen back to the hive. I learned at the beginning of this season this is a very good sign. I had been looking out for this ever since I hived the prime swarm over 2 weeks ago. Even though I did not see the queen last Sunday in this hive the sign of pollen is a sure indication that there are young grubs in the hive, so the queen must be inside and she is laying eggs.
I spent a little time today observing both hives and it is clear that they are at very different stages of development. Hv2 reminds me very much of the beginning of last season when I brought the bees home. They were just busy settling down, building up the colony. Hv1, on the other hand, seem to be less settled and is finding its way. This is understandable given the amount of disturbance it has had over the last few days. My main attention will now be focused on Hv1 (the main hive). I shall be looking out for signs of bees bringing in pollen. The queen I saw in this hive must have been a virgin queen. This means that it will have to do its mating flight (if it has not already done so) and return safely. Let's hope 'all's well...'