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Thread: New Bees

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    52

    Default New Bees

    Hi.... new guy here...two hives....both hived in late April...one doing very well and the other is very slow to grow. Is there an easy way to spot bees that have just emerged from their cell? I've taken several pictures of the bees in the slow hive and am unable to see much difference in the bees although I'm sure new bees exist.

    Wayne

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    3,044

    Default Re: New Bees

    Might be a little smaller and fuzzier, but really can't tell them apart probably.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Greenville, TX, USA
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    4,416

    Default Re: New Bees

    There can be a number of reasons for a slow hive. One reason is providing too much space too soon. If the population of bees is lower for whatever reason, you may need to reduce the available space until they build up a bit. You can also try boosting them from your stronger hive. You can do that by giving them a frame of emerging brood, or by swapping the hive locations and letting the returning foragers strengthen the weaker hive.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    52

    Default Re: New Bees

    Thanks for the replies. Interesting that you should say they may have too much space. I was told elsewhere they needed more space due to being installed in a medium (ala Mr. Bush). They have only drawn comb on the four center frames of the medium since April but have had plenty of syrup and available flowers all the time. I believe there is currently about 1/3 less bees than when I started but it seems they are holding their own as far as numbers goes. The two hives are about 170 miles apart with the furtherest one from my house being the slow one. It is located about 20 miles north of Brady, Tx. I'll attach a couple of photos of the weak one.
    circle.jpgqueen.jpg6-3-d.jpg

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Greenville, TX, USA
    Posts
    4,416

    Default Re: New Bees

    It's tough to work two hives that far apart. Generally, I feel you need a minimum of 2-3 hives in any location just to do the things I talked about. The pictures show a frame of open and capped brood and a couple of frames of honey. Did you start them on foundation? If so, it may have taken awhile for them to draw enough cells for the queen to lay in. If you only have 4 frames drawn, you should definitely only have one box. They can't maintain the environment of a larger hive with that few bees. You could even go so far as to use a follower board to shrink the hive down to 5-6 frames for a few weeks until they can reach critical mass. Giving them too much space too soon will really slow down a hive.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    52

    Default Re: New Bees

    Ok...you lost me on the "follower board". What is that?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Reno, NV
    Posts
    3,178

    Default Re: New Bees

    Follower Board, The easiest way to gt an idea of what one is is to look up top bar hives. but basically it is a false wall that is placed in the hive like it is a frame. it can be placed anywhere causing the interior space of the box to be reduced.

    Interesting about the to much space effect. That might be what I am seeing in my hive. It has built like crazy going from a 5 fame nuc to a full 10 frame body in a couple of weeks. I added a second deep and they drew out the comb and filled it with brood in good time. but one the med super was added they seem to have stopped. not only do they pay no attention to the med but progress in the upper deep has slowed. I have been puzzling over this and now I wonder if they have not simply reached there limit on desired space for their population? If I should remove the med super and let them build up even more in the two deeps?
    Stand for what you believe, even if you stand alone.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Union Grove NC USA
    Posts
    34

    Default Re: New Bees

    Wayne. From the photos ,looks like you might have a very poor queen.The pattern on the first frame looks very bad,is there any eggs or open brood on the first frame couldn't tell.I assume this was a package of bee you bought in April,bees have had time for more than 2 brood circles.Should be doing better.I would think you would need new queen.
    Just my thing not seeing the hive.
    Jim
    Last edited by popsjim; 06-20-2012 at 06:42 AM. Reason: add word

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Herrick, SD USA
    Posts
    4,624

    Default Re: New Bees

    I doubt that it relates to any of your manipulations Daniel. Bees won't build up indefinitely without good flow conditions. Without knowing anything about your immediate area my assumption is that without a pretty strong honey flow they aren't going to show much interest in moving up into a box of foundation. Have you seen bees working anything nearby?
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    52

    Default Re: New Bees

    Quote Originally Posted by Ross View Post
    Did you start them on foundation?
    I did start them on plasticell foundation. Are you saying that could be a reason for them being slow? There is plasticell on each of the ten frames in the medium. I am wondering if the whole problem could just be the queen. What do y'all think about that as a possibility?

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