Rats. No queen, no uncapped brood, and almost no honey. I had noticed before that queenless bee were bone-lazy, and this clinches it in my mind. That hive WAS pretty full of the good stuff, and now they have eaten their winter stores instead of foraging. I checked them almost 2 weeks ago, and I must have somehow squished the queen. I have ordered 2 marked queens from Rossman Apiaries. I ordered 2 in case they both did not arrive in good shape. Still, if I receive 2 strong queens I will use them both. You are not SUPPOSED to split hives this late, but the bees wouldn't fit in just 2 boxes because there was still a good bit of capped brood. It WAS a big hive. I don't know why they didn't raise a queen from an egg, but they didn't The classic response would be to winter them in 3 boxes, but I am not going to. Instead I am going to consider 2 options. The first option is to place a single box hive over the 2 box hive, with a queen excluder that has a fine screen on both sides between the 2 hives. If the hives do not build up quickly enough, I can always do a newspaper combine in 6 weeks. We should still have some warm Fall days in October. It means, of course, that I will have trouble checking the lower hive in the early spring. I will therefor have to take the top hive off pretty early. Still, if I can keep them together during January, both hives may make it. I will put an inner cover over the screened queen excluder so that I can lift off the nuc (inner cover and all) without losing ALL of the warmth. *OR*, I might build 2 nuc boxes that hold 5 frames each. I could then put one nuc box on the other for the winter. That is rare out here, but the gent who taught me does it every year and rarely looses a nuc. He places the nucs against a wall for a windbreak, of course. Kansas get VERY windy during the winter and early spring. What *IS* certain is that I am going to have to feed both the hive and the nuc like the dickens, as they have eaten their winter stores. I will let you know next spring how it worked out.