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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Burlington, Iowa
    Posts
    29

    Default Strange bee-havior

    I was checking my bees today and one of the swarms I caught a few days ago is acting strange. It was a rather large swarm and I put it in a deep hive body. I watched several bees walk out onto the landing platform and just fall of. It appeared they were attempting to fly off and just fell. They would then frantically flip their wings and run over the ground and grass. All my other hives look great. Any ideas?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Evansville, IN
    Posts
    2,492

    Default Re: Strange bee-havior

    They will do that when it's cold sometimes, but usually that means they are dying of old age. You get bees of all ages in a swarm, and some of them will be dying every day, although not usually on the landing board.

    If it's below 50, they sometimes have trouble flying due to being too cold, and have to sit for a while and flex their flight muscles to warm up, at which point they will fly back into the hive.

    Pesticide kills are another posibility, although usually it's bees returning from foraging that land and fall off the hive and can't get back up, not bees emerging from the hive.

    Look closely to see if their wings have become uncoupled and make a "k" -- this is a sign of distress, not old age and you should check to make sure they are not suffering from disease or parasites.

    Watch for a few days and see if the conditon persists.

    Peter

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Brookfield, CT
    Posts
    36

    Default Re: Strange bee-havior

    I installed two packages of bee’s on May 5th. One hive is strong and the other show the exact symptoms you are describing. I was told it may be pesticides.
    I’m doing a full inspection tomorrow to see how devastated the hive is. Lots of bee’s walking on the ground.

    Rob

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