One of my hives (2 years old) is not producing honey and seems awfully slow in its activity. Would it hurt anything to remove the supers and medicate them? I have the kit from Mann with three treatments; CheckMite strips, Mite-A-Thol Menthol and Terra Patties. I know something is not right.
I'm not sure I'd do a wholesale mite treatment until I had more of an idea "what isn't right." How does the brood look? Is the queen laying? Is the queen present? How old is she? Can you find varroa in the drone cells? Have you done a sugar-shake test for varroa count? The trachael mites will be harder to diagnose. Do you have other hives to compare with this one? Is there any sign of AFB?
Its that time again called a dearth. (And yes I know its spelled correctly this time.I feel the force within.....)
Late July and early Aug begins a dry period that produces normally low honey production. Around here it will pick back up in Sept with the goldenrod.
Medicating on assumptions is not a good thing. Either you have a problem or not. Do a test and treat as needed. If you pull supers off now you may or may not have time to get them back on for a fall flow if your interested in that. Treating now if not needed, means you have one less available treatment method this fall if problems come up.
This is also a time of year that you should be on top of non-laying queens. Some hive shut down about now and if the fall flow does not materialize, then egg laying is delayed further and you could go into winter with very old bees. And next spring dead hives.
P.S. How can you go and have only the number of posts you have over that long period of time.
Having bees hang-out and doing little at this time is normal.
I agree with both the previous posts. Don't medicate for something you don't know if you have.
Try to ascertain if something is indeed wrong. Do you have other hives to compare to? If there is a dearth they will all be feeling the effects. Make sure it's queenright and there are no signs of disease and then, I'd assume it's a dearth.
Feed if you like, but be aware you may set off a lot of robbing feeding through a dearth. Every bee for 2 miles will smell your syrup. http://www.beesource.com/ubb/smile.gif
> Feed if you like, but be aware you may set off a lot of robbing feeding through a dearth. Every bee for 2 miles will smell your syrup.
Even if it's in the Hive?
I never feed with a boardman feeder. I use millers or jars on top of inner covers or divsion board feeders (the nice stiff ones with ladders from Brushy Mt.). I just fed mine two days ago and have been fighting robbing every since. It's frustrating because I'm really feeding to help the small splits I've made and they are the ones that are suffering for it. So I'm feeding all of them and not the one that was being robbed until the robbing lets up.
Answer: Yes. It can set off robbing even inside the hive. I'd reccomend feeding ALL your hives if you feed any to cut down on it. If you have all the same kind of frames, you can always steal some of that nice capped food from the strong hives for your weaker hives for winter.
Thanks for all the replies.
I opened the hive on Saturday and did not find a queen. I did find egg cells, which part of of them I damaged when I pulled out the frames to look. I laid the damage piece I broke off one of the frames in the bottom of the hive. I am wondering if I should purchase a queen, or one will be hatched.
>I opened the hive on Saturday and did not find a queen.
That does not always mean there isn't one.
>I did find egg cells, which part of of them I damaged when I pulled out the frames to look.
I assume you mean queen cells?
>I laid the damage piece I broke off one of the frames in the bottom of the hive. I am wondering if I should purchase a queen, or one will be hatched.
Were there other queen cells that were not damaged? If not, then there will not be one hatched and you will need to add some new eggs or buy a queen.
Yes, the cells I spoke of were Queen cells. Only a portion of them were damaged from opening the frames. I hope a new queen will be coming from the cells.