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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Jamaica. W.I.
    Posts
    21

    Default strange bee activity

    I am not sure if this is a problem .i.e a disease. In a hive I recently obtained most of the bees crawl out on their backs before flying off.

    I have inspected the hive and haven't noticed any mites or bee deformity. I am a new beekeeper, only started about 3 month ago. Therefore I might not be experienced enough to notice a few things but I am certain of what or where to look to find the Vorroa Mites

    Any advice is appreciated, Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Richmond,Virginia,USA
    Posts
    9

    Default Re: strange bee activity

    You don't say that they are leaving the hive for good or just leaving on their normal flights? You don't say that you have a screened bottom board or not so you can dust with powdered confectioner's sugar about a cup from the top of the open hive. If you don't have a screened bottom board then it would be good to put in a cookie sheet or piece of cardboard to just about fit the inside bottom of the hive. Dust with a sifter or screen to coat the bees evenly from the top. They will buzz loud the first time you do it but they will start grooming themselves to clean off the dust and hence the mites. Pull the tray out after 2 hours and check for mites fallen. The bees will clean for the next day and a half at least but the majority of mites will fall off then. That is if that is what is bothering them. Not sure but there may be a trait of this bee to do this. I had one hive that they came out to do aerobics on the front of the hive up and down up and down. It is possible that that is what is going on here if all else seems normal. If they are dwindling in numbers then a chemical or pesticide may be used near by the hive. I defer to more knowledgable beekeepers.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Columbia county, New York, USA
    Posts
    1,540

    Default Re: strange bee activity

    Read this thread (and the other one mentioned in it) to see if this is what your situation is:
    http://www.beesource.com/forums/showthread.php?t=244235
    The little bee returns with evening's gloom,
    To join her comrades in the braided hive... -Tennyson

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Lumberton, NC USA!
    Posts
    94

    Thumbs Up Re: strange bee activity

    EarleB,
    You have stated that the bees "crawl out on their backs?" I have a Kenyan Top Bar Hive and every day, the vast majority of my girls will tumble on their backs now and then. I have 3/4" holes drilled for their entrance and exits. Actually, I believe (as others have stated) they get in such a big hurry they just lose their footing coming and going from the hive! You have to also consider that it gets pretty busy at the entrance so you will have some colliding into each other as well. I would not worry until they end up on their backs...dead!
    "Death smiles at everyone. Marines smile back!"

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Motley County, Texas
    Posts
    508

    Default Re: strange bee activity

    Since reading threads like this one, I have taken special care to watch and see if any of the bees flip over on their backs as the come out of the entrace. You mention "the bees crawl out on their backs". Do you mean that they crawl out of the top of the entrance upside down and that is what you mean by "crawl out on their backs"?

    I don't see how the bees can crawl on their backs. As an insect, I could easily see them squirming, once on their backs, to try and get flipped over again.

    Good luck and let us know how it goes.

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