Winter killed dead hive.
Winter killed dead hive.
Looks like a lot of chewed wax on them, what does that tell you?
It tells me that I had two die offs with a small cluster clinging on in an unusually mild winter that was finally done in when the weather turned cold.
When did you do your last mite test?
I had treated with hopguard in Sept, so mite levels were fairly low going into winter.
Jet, I was curious about whether you wrapped the hive or insulated it in any way, and what was your coldest winter temperatures so far. I am asking so as to compare with my hive, I am doing a hive study on the subject.....Thanks....Bill
They were not wrapped. I kept them on my back porch were they could get some afternoon sun and be sheltered from the worst of the wind. The coldest night we had was down in the low teens 11 or 12 degrees. This was my first year and this was my one and only hive. They were a bit of a misfit colony they were started from a late May swarm who's queen layed for about a week then died I waited for them to make a queen but they didn't so I requeened. The new queen was a bit of a dud she had a weird laying pattern of tight clusters scattered all over the hive and I kept finding eggs on the IPM board. They never really hit their stride and I didn't expect them to make it. The mild winter had me hoping they would pull through and I could requeen in the spring but then the weather turned south and they didn't make it.
Interesting, are you going to replace them and start over in the spring? Perhaps if the hive was cleaned up a bit you could attract a swarm, the already lived in hive would be very attractive to newcomers.
Yeah I'm on the list for a package I didn't want to wait till swarm season. I still have about 50+ pounds of honey and a lot of stored pollen so hopefully they take off like gangbusters and I can manage to get a honey crop this year.
I havelost two of 14.. so it happens. Second, if this small swarm of bees built comb, that will help your package bees a lot! It take 4 or 5 times as much energy to make comb than honey. I am going to split 8 of my 14 so I will be dividing up all the good comb from the hives that died out to give all a good start.
Good luck. Let us know what happens.
Grandchildren are the best.... Bees a close second....
I see mites in the pic....dead on the bees. How many did you see when you inspected the dead out.
About 15 or so that I found.
I think all I'm saying REALLY is as a newbie we do run around clueless for a good while. (I still do!) Especially if we are without a local mentor. (I don't have one. Don't have a bee club that has that attitude...YET. But I've been working on that for 3 years now and it's changing slightly!) So I DO get a but flustered at some comments cuz I know what they are really saying (and yours was really innocent enough). But more helpful to us new/er beeks (especially when we are already downtrodden) are directed questions like ken and Michael asked. That can be helpful and guide us to a direction that may turn a lightbulb on and actually help us become a better beekeeper.
Not picking on you, Honeydew. As I said, your comment was reasonable. I've been "beat up" with much worse on here. I'm just saying...
Zone 7b ~ Central Arkansas
8fr medium equipment
I see a hive where the cluster (small from your own admission) got separated from the honey and starved. There are lots of dead bees with bits of wax on top which tells me the remainingbees desperately were trying find carbohydrates either from honey or the wax itself and finally died off completely. The bees for the most part look clean and dry which tells me that moisture or nosema for that matter wasn't an issue.
Bring the box inside and get the hive ready for new bees. Now that you have a year under your belt, hopefully you'll have better luck.
I feel your pain. I'm from CT. Last summer was my first yr. I bought two nucs from a local apiary. Got them late. Fed them gallons of sugar water when I got them. stopped for the summer and then fed a couple gallons in the fall. Didn't take any honey at all. Today the temp was at least 50F. So I opened them up. 1st one They were down to two frames so I felt I better sprinkle sugar on them. Tomorrow I'm getting Fondant to put on top of frame and I believe I will now have to feed them regularly throughout spring.
My 2nd hive was weak all summer. When I opened it up all the bees were dead. Frames of honey all empty. Dead bees in the middle. I will take apart tomorrow but I believe they starved to death. I plan on saving the empty honey cells for my two new nucs that I'm buying for the spring. I'm so sad. I feel like I lost a friend and I could have prevented it. Now it could have just been that they were a weak hive, but still I could have prevented it. What pisses me off is that I never even took any honey and I think I fed them plenty.
Tomorrow if the weather is decent I will feed my remaining live hive Fondant that I hope to buy at Walmart I guess and I'll inspect and take a ton of pictures of my dead Hive. $120+ down the drain, but its to be expected I guess. Hard lesson learned.