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Thread: dead bees

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Portland, Oregon, USA
    Posts
    6

    Default dead bees

    Hi,

    I'm seeing about 5 to 20 dead bees a day being chucked out of the hive. it's been a rainy 3 weeks here in NW. And the very beginning of summer. Think the cold and lack of pollen starved some? Or is this just normal death in large hive? Hive is two supers strong.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Panama City, Florida, USA
    Posts
    549

    Default Re: dead bees

    Normal attrition. Consider that a quality queen lays between 1200 and 1800 eggs per day. At some point they start cying at the same rate. Most die while out of the hive. But for those that don't, the mortuary bees dispose of them.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Red Bank,NJ
    Posts
    53

    Default Re: dead bees

    In a strong hive you will lose about 1000 a day most of them away from the hive seeing 15 or 50 in front of the hive is not uncommon.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Ripon, WI, USA
    Posts
    63

    Default Re: dead bees

    This comforts me a little. Maybe I am seeing normal behavior?


    We started with 2 hives mid April from 3# packages. Our first year having bees. One hive went queenless and ended up with laying workers. We shook the queenless hive into the other hive a week ago. The next day, I put the one box with comb from the hive we shook and put it on top of the existing hive. Everything seemed to be going well.

    I noticed a few days ago that there were a lot of dead bees in front of the remaining hive. I wasn't sure how long they had accumulated there as some looked rather old, so I raked them up a couple of days ago. There doesn't seem to be a great number of new dead bees, but there are a few bees that aren't quite dead yet. Some of them look like what I think may be newly hatched brood. They are fuzzier than most of the workers I see. Their wings appear normally developed. They are just climbing on the grass. They don't look well. Any ideas or suggestions?

    Something interesting happened as I was watching the hive with my binoculars. A couple of bees came out of the hive jointly carrying another bee that appeared to be moving a little but not really resisting much. The two took off flying, holding onto the sick bee, and landed on the ground in front of the hive. They tried and tried to take off again and finally did. They flew off, the two of them, carrying that other bee!! Is there a reason they would want to get it away from the hive?

    I work all weekend but intend to open the hive on Tuesday, weather permitting, to see what they are doing. Good idea? or should wait a while longer to disturb them?

    Thanks bunches for any feedback!!
    Mary in Wisconsin

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Pepperell, MA.
    Posts
    3,757

    Default Re: dead bees

    Lots of times, I've seen bees carry another bee...dead or alive....for some distance before dropping it. I don't know why for sure but it's not uncommon.
    "My wife always wanted girls. Just not thousands and thousands of them......"

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