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  1. #1
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    Jul 2008
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    melbourne, Australia
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    Default Lots of dead bees at entrance (on the ground)

    Hi I have two hives, I went to move them the other night and found probably 200 odd dead bees at the entrance, I checked both hives before I took them and both seemed to have many bees inside. We had a huge downpour about three days earlier (bigger than most) and when I opened the lid there was condensation in the lid. The lid was on, and no apparent water looked like it could have got in the top however the temp got down to 6 degrees outside for a few days. I think they may have been flooded but I am not sure (hive is off the ground and it is on a hill, so no water would have risen so to speak), Could the cold have knocked a few off. Out of three hives, it was the only one with dead bees out front. They were still fresh also as I squished a few and they spurted. some were even moving a little.

    Anyone know what may have happened. Or could anyone give me any advice.
    I am new to this, I love it and the first year my two hives netted me 200 odd kilo's of honey, I didnt even knwo what I was doing other than reading the book and killing the queen cells.
    Dave

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    McGraw,NY,USA
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    580

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    Would that be 6 degress C ? What did you see from the bees that were on the ground but still alive ? Did they have deformed wings? Since I am only guessing here they might have had another hive try to rob them or it could be a mite problem/virus cause as a result of mites? ...more info would help ...Rick
    Turn stumbling blocks into stepping stones

  3. #3
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    Jul 2008
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    melbourne, Australia
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    Quote Originally Posted by RAlex View Post
    Would that be 6 degress C ? What did you see from the bees that were on the ground but still alive ? Did they have deformed wings? Since I am only guessing here they might have had another hive try to rob them or it could be a mite problem/virus cause as a result of mites? ...more info would help ...Rick
    Hi rick, yes 6 celcius, no there were no deformed wings, and no no mites, we do not have them here as yet, well not down south where I am. The entrance is wider than most on this particular hive, Since I moved them I placed a stick covering all but about 2 inches of entrance, I noticed the next day that more dead bees were thrown out (about 30 or so). The ones that were still alive were barely moving.
    I did have one super above the main box, and in the last month, the bees had built up the comb on all the frames. Remembering here it is the middle of our winter at the moment.
    Can the cold get them, and if the rain was coming in on an angle could it get in the vent holes in the top cover?
    Thanks

  4. #4
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    Jul 2008
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    Damascus, Maryland
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    I was told to let the hive's sit till SPRING so if it is winter there you sure should NOT be into them. Till spring:
    "Life without God is like an unsharpened pencil - it has no point."

  5. #5
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    Jul 2008
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    melbourne, Australia
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    Quote Originally Posted by J-Bees View Post
    I was told to let the hive's sit till SPRING so if it is winter there you sure should NOT be into them. Till spring:
    Hi j-bees thanks for that comment but I dont really understand. I have not been into them, Well I actually have been but only for inspection, our climate here allows the bees to work throughout winter also, 6 degrees c is unsual and mabey because of global warming our weather patterns seem to be more fierce. And with all due respect your comment has no relevence to the 200+ dead and dying bees out the front of the hive. I need help here not being told what to do like i'm a school kid. But thanks anyway I do appreciate advice, sometimes it is better to ask questions, suggest things not highlight words like NOT. thanks.
    Not to dis you j-bees, do you have any other comments that may be able to help me, thanks
    dave.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    McGraw,NY,USA
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    I think that generally the bees will tolerate a good deal of cold temps. Moisture is another matter. In my location we lose bees in the spring when the days are warm and moisture builds in the hive and we get freezing nites. I have lost some wonderful hives for lack of upper hive ventilation. I know this doesnt sound like what is going on with your hive. Have you seen any evidence of robbing from the other hives ? My bees will fly, the Italain down to about 50 degrees F , where as my Carniolan and feral bees will fly down to about 45 degrees F ...If it isnt robbing then you might want to post this question in the "disease and pest" section perhaps one of those guys/gals can chime in and help ya ...In any event G`luck with them ...Rick
    Turn stumbling blocks into stepping stones

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
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    melbourne, Australia
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    Hi there, and thanks for that comment rick. I just opend up the hive and took a look. Two hives A and B, A seemed healthy, B is the one with the issues.

    Ok I looked in A first. A had a small amount of bees, enough for a starter colony but not many more, They are all active, very active. I found the queen and she was also moving around alot. But no brood at all. No honey and verry little pollen. I placed two fresh frames in with white sugar as I think it may be a lack of sugar/nectar that is the issue, remembering we had a very bad dry sumer last summer. and the trees I wanted to collect pollen from did not flower. ( i found out that they only flower once every three years).

    Hive B had about ten times the amount of bees than in A but they were moving around really slow, there was brood, some capped and some uncapped, I also noticed hundreds of dead bees on the floor of the hive and a few dead white brood on the floor. The bees were all walking around like they were on the moon (slow motion). I did not find the queen as they were all bunched up on top of each other also. As i lifted out the frames, many of them just fell onto the floor of the hive, no fliers and when I had a closer look, lots of them had their stingers poking out. There was also no honey, but I did notice some pollen (more than hive A). Some of the brood that were capped, had eaten some of the capping away but there was no movement from them.

    I think they are just starving to death, could this be true? What is the best and fastest way to get them going again?

    Also will the workers make sure the queen is kept alive, by way of meaning, will they put her first and sacrifice themselves by giving here what nutrients they may have.

    Why was there no brood in hive A? What is the queen up to? she seemed very active, will she not lay when there is a lack of food?

    I look forward to some help and thanks again, from the other side of the world.

    By the way, is it really that bad in the USA, we hear of people lining up to get their money out of the banks because of lack of security and trust. If this continues, is there a chance that all hell could break loose economically, and if so, who will be affected the most?

    Dave

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Fuquay-Varina, NC, USA
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    22

    Default

    The dead white bees sounds like chalkbrood.

  9. #9
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    Jul 2008
    Location
    melbourne, Australia
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    I think they are starving so I have put ;liquid water/sugar in the top, hopefully it should help, Just spoke to a local, everyone over here in this area has had to feed this winter as there was very little food stores kept because of the dry summer nd lack of nectar. thanks all.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Damascus, Maryland
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    Quote Originally Posted by liptrapsurf View Post
    Hi j-bees thanks for that comment but I dont really understand. I have not been into them, Well I actually have been but only for inspection, our climate here allows the bees to work throughout winter also, 6 degrees c is unsual and mabey because of global warming our weather patterns seem to be more fierce. And with all due respect your comment has no relevence to the 200+ dead and dying bees out the front of the hive. I need help here not being told what to do like i'm a school kid. But thanks anyway I do appreciate advice, sometimes it is better to ask questions, suggest things not highlight words like NOT. thanks.
    Not to dis you j-bees, do you have any other comments that may be able to help me, thanks
    dave.

    Sorry there mate but what I read above said you were in them:

    ""I went to move them the other night and found probably 200 odd dead bees at the entrance, I checked both hives before I took them and both seemed to have many bees inside"""

    that is why I said not to be into them till spring..... 6 where I am is friken cold.

    Sorry I got your goat: will try to answer things you say in a different tone for sure from now on....... Now you have to also remember this is my first year at this all I am doing is trying to keep 4 hives going and help save the bee's ----- sure has been a supper FUN trip so far:}:}


    PEACE!! JB:}
    "Life without God is like an unsharpened pencil - it has no point."

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    McGraw,NY,USA
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    580

    Default

    Hello Dave

    Hive A ...if stores are low/gone and workers are dieing when the numbers of bees get too low the queen will stop laying as the hive starves more bees die and eventually she will die. I also suspect that the workers will take out the young bees from the cells that are dead ( explains dead pupea? )

    Hive B ...it is normal for the floor to be littered with dead bees ( workers from fall who are not removed during winter months) including some pupea if stores are getting low. Not sure what is the significance of the stingers being out are ? I would get some dry sugar or a candy board on both hives and if you can locate some pollen make patties with either honey or locate some brood suppliment to get them thru the winter. Not sure what is a typical winter temp pattern for your area but it is not uncommon for temps to get to minus 20 F here.
    I would be careful if you have hard freezes in your concerning using a liquid in your hives. Hopes this helps .

    I havent heard anything about people taking their money out of banks here? I know some lending institutions are in trouble for issueing questionable loans and sub prime lending rates , then when the rate goes up homeowners can not make the higher payments. The motage companies then foreclose and try to resell the home . I think its a shame if the goverment bail out these companies but that just me ...Rick
    Turn stumbling blocks into stepping stones

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