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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Taneytown, Maryland
    Posts
    18

    Sad What is the horrible smell?

    I've been having a lot of trouble with my hive. First, I had a failing queen which then turned into laying workers and that was a nightmare. NOW, 10 days later after introducing my new queen and dumping the laying workers (shes alive and seems healthy), I inspect the hive and it has the most god awful smell I have ever encountered in my life. The hive numbers are very weak and it seems as though they are not removing the dead bees. I barely have any brood at all. The queen may have started laying but there is no capped brood yet. I did the tooth pick test to check for AFB and that doesn't seem to be the case (maybe its EFB?). The entire hive smells like rotting meat. I just can't figure out what it is. I'm pretty sure its not the honey because when I poked around in some cells with dead brood I smelled the contents and thats where the source of stench is most likely coming from. I am so confused and just drained at the constant problems I've been having lately.

    Anyone have any ideas or seen something like this before?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Outagamie County, Wisconsin USA
    Posts
    881

    Default Re: What is the horrible smell?

    A bunch of dead bees/brood can stink no matter what they died from. Good that you are checking for FB, though.

    No offense meant, but probably a few more details would help. What do you mean by saying that you "dumped the laying workers"? Could what you did have resulted in chilled brood which died? A laying worker hive is difficult to requeen as they would more than likely kill her. How did you requeen? Was your original queen or the new queen marked? Are you in a dearth?

    A hive with weak numbers will struggle to do their daily jobs which also include removing the dead. Good luck. Do you know any other beekeepers. A mentor would help with the learning curve.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Taneytown, Maryland
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: What is the horrible smell?

    I'm sure its not chilled brood.

    I shook out every frame at least 50-100 feet away and made sure no bees were on the frames. Then placed the hive back in it original spot. I did requeen and it seems to be successful. The new queen is marked, yes.

    Certain that I'm in dearth. I am still feeding them.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Taneytown, Maryland
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: What is the horrible smell?

    Should i provide more ventilation?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    lee county, fl, usa
    Posts
    812

    Default Re: What is the horrible smell?

    I have some questions too...no answers though. How did this colony start and when? Was it an established hive with drawn comb? Do you see any streaks on the front of the hive? I don't know if nosemea (not sure the spelling) smells, but the feces streaks would indicate that disease.
    "Rule Three of beekeeping...Never cease to feel wonder" Laurie R. King--
    March 2010; +/- 30 hives, TF

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Taneytown, Maryland
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: What is the horrible smell?

    I started the hive from packaged bees in march. No streaks on the front of the hive and no visible signs of nosemea.

    I'm pretty sure the breeder I got the package from wasn't the best place to get bees. Well, I know that now. I'm a new a beekeeper so I wasn't sure who to choose from but I know who to not choose from now.

    I also forgot to add that there is a collection of dead larva in the bottom of the hive. I removed them and I see some dead brood on the ground in the front, so they are removing it. But they are removing it slowly. I didn't see any real signs of disease when I was examining the dead brood. Maybe they are just rotting?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Cookeville, TN, USA
    Posts
    3,890

    Default Re: What is the horrible smell?

    Request an inspection from your state just in case. You don't want to be that guy that let a plague start.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Collinsville, VA
    Posts
    439

    Default Re: What is the horrible smell?

    Do you have more frames than the bees can cover and maintain? If so, it can lead to beetle and wax moth damage and both of those can smell pretty bad. You should consider removing boxes or maybe even making a 5 frame nuc from it until the queen kicks in and they build it numbers. It's better to have a strong small hive than a weak big one.

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