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Thread: Dead. All Dead.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Erie, PA
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    Sad Dead. All Dead.

    Just a few weeks ago, both hives were buzzing everywhere taking cleansing flights. Today, total silence. No capping debris on the SBB tray. Piles of dead bees. I'm not 100% sure, but the prospects are pretty grim.

    My heart is breaking.
    “The keeping of bees is like the direction of sunbeams.” -Henry David Thoreau

  2. #2

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    I was out checking some of mine today. One of my favorites...a gentle, feral colony that produced a boatload of honey last season....they were all dead. Covering brood. A full deep of honey above and only inches away. It does break your heart.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  3. #3
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    Dec 2006
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    Default

    Sorry to read that. I'll keep my fingers crossed for you.

  4. #4
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    May 2008
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    Snowmass, Colorado, USA
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Hobie View Post
    Just a few weeks ago, both hives were buzzing everywhere taking cleansing flights. Today, total silence. No capping debris on the SBB tray. Piles of dead bees. I'm not 100% sure, but the prospects are pretty grim.

    My heart is breaking.
    When you pull the bees out, make good notes about how they look and their condition. Better yet also take some pics. If you post these results and the pics (if you can) people here may be able to help you figure out what killed them so that at least you can learn and hopefully avoid it from happening in the future.

    Sorry bout you loss.
    Life is tough, but it's tougher when you're stupid.” John Wayne

  5. #5
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    May 2007
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    morehead city, nc, usa
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    beemandan.....what has happened weatherwise in Athens Ga that would prevent the bees from getting to the honey? Or was it something else? I'm always bragging about our mild winters here but now you have me scared.

  6. #6
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    Feb 2009
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    Murfreesboro, TN, USA
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    Default

    tracheal mites?
    De Colores,
    Ken

  7. #7
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    Sep 2004
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    Devils Lake, North Dakota
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    Sorry to hear that Hobie....... I does rip your heart
    out...... You know they are more than bugs when
    you find a dead out.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by peletier View Post
    beemandan.....what has happened weatherwise in Athens Ga that would prevent the bees from getting to the honey? Or was it something else? I'm always bragging about our mild winters here but now you have me scared.
    For reasons I don't really understand this colony overwintered with a small cluster. The weather hasn't been especially cold since I last checked on them. I found them covering a softball sized area of solid brood...right at the top of the frame. The deep immediately above was full of capped honey. I'm guessing that the small cluster and the gap between one box and the next was just a little too much.
    The one remaining daughter of this queen is currently in a nuc and has a veeeerrry small cluster...it may be genetic. I'm watching them even more closely now.
    It was just, in my opinion, a bad mix of circumstances......
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  9. #9
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    May 2006
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    Erie, PA
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    Thanks, everyone. It's rough, and didn't help that I had, not 5 minutes before, pulled my PA state apiary registration out of the mailbox. Apiary of zero colonies. Maybe I'll get on a swarm list. Package bees are not in the budget this year.
    “The keeping of bees is like the direction of sunbeams.” -Henry David Thoreau

  10. #10
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    Sep 2006
    Location
    Dane County, WI.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hobie View Post
    Just a few weeks ago, both hives were buzzing everywhere taking cleansing flights. Today, total silence. No capping debris on the SBB tray. Piles of dead bees. I'm not 100% sure, but the prospects are pretty grim.

    My heart is breaking.
    Sorry to hear about the loss of your hives. In a previous thread, you [me also] mentioned about bees flying off and diving into the snow. This was about a month ago. In that thread I provided a link to a paper about tracheal mites and their affect on respiration in the bees. Maybe those colonies just had a bad infestation for some reason. Will be checking my hives next week.

  11. #11
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    Jan 2005
    Location
    Hamilton, Alabama
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    I rarely get perturbed, but when someone says that tracheal mites are killing their colonies, that 'bugs' me. Genetic resistance to tracheal mites is widespread. The best thing we all could do would be to completely stop treating for tracheal mites and to refuse to buy queens from anyone who treats for them. In 10 years, there would not be a problem any more. I haven't treated for tracheal mites in 20 years. Why do you?

    btw, my colonies are thriving.

    DarJones
    DarJones - 44 years, 10 colonies (max 40), sideliner, treatment free since 2005, 11 frame broodnest, small cell

  12. #12
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    No need to get perturbed. If it was tracheal mites that did in my hives, then it was. These colonies have never been treated. If it was tracheal mites this is just the evolution you want. On the other hand, if it was starvation, I look at the jars of honey in the cupboard and blame myself. Regardless of the cause, I have gone from a beekeeper to someone who stores beekeeping equipment in the span of 2 weeks.
    “The keeping of bees is like the direction of sunbeams.” -Henry David Thoreau

  13. #13
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    Jan 2009
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    Bristol,MA,USA
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    Good way to get calls for swarms. Send postcards with your name and tel. # to all of the surrounding police depts., fire depts and pest control firms. Ask them to keep your number tacked up on the bulletin board near the phone. Don't refuse them when they call. Some won't call again after one refusal because they may have a list of other beekeepers some of whom they may know personally. Mention that you would pick up the swarm free of charge. Good luck.

  14. #14
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    May 2008
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    Near Harpers Ferry, WV
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    Sorry for your loss. I have a hive of Russians that I've been sweating about all winter, who are still with me. They have been working on the fondant that I left for them, and we dropped a feeder can in with them today that they started taking from right away.

    Two more weeks and I think I can say for sure that we enjoyed complete success.

  15. #15
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    Nov 2006
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    Tulsa, OK
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    On the bright side, if you catch two swarms, put them on the drawn comb and get reasonable weather, you could have a honey crop this year.

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