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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Califon, New Jersey, USA
    Posts
    7

    Default Dead Hives(2), is Honey safe?

    This past weekend we checked our hives and found both dead. Both hives had plenty of honey stores in fact one had an entire medium super untouched. As a rule of thumb is the honey safe?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Issaquah,WA,USA
    Posts
    2,394

    Default Re: Dead Hives(2), is Honey safe?

    So why did they die? If it was weather, weak queen, moisture, cold, mites then probably use it for your other hives. If it was a disease then would not use it for other hives.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    6,341

    Default Re: Dead Hives(2), is Honey safe?

    If you mean is the honey safe for humans to eat, yes, almost certainly. Of course, if someone sprayed your hives with something like Raid, well, that would be enough for me to not use that honey.

    If you want to preserve those combs and honey for a new try with live bees, freezing the comb (in a freezer) is one option.
    Graham
    --- Practical reality trumps philosophy!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Plainfield, NJ
    Posts
    46

    Default Re: Dead Hives(2), is Honey safe?

    I personally would freeze the honey while I tried to ascertain the reason for the death. Once I knew, then I would/could allow myself to indulge if that is your wish. Without the reason, you dont know if the hive was contaminated in some way. If you can get a sample of the dead bees and send them to the Maryland Bee Lab for analysis.

    Chris in NJ

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Jackson, MO
    Posts
    591

    Default Re: Dead Hives(2), is Honey safe?

    Interesting question. Can bees pass anything along to humans in the honey stores??

    There is always talk about the purity of honey, it has been found and eaten in Eqyptian tombs, it lasts forever. But I sense some doubt when it comes from a hive that was found dead.

    And why freeze it? Freezing will not kill most pathogens. May kill a few wax moths.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,947

    Default Re: Dead Hives(2), is Honey safe?

    I have never frozen a comb in over 40 years of beekeeping.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Park City Ky
    Posts
    1,900

    Default Re: Dead Hives(2), is Honey safe?

    The main concern with honey for human consumption would be how long it had been unprotected. That is, have mice, roaches, other vermins, been in the hive, after the deadout occured.

    I don't make it a habit of eating honey from a deadout. I don't like eating honey where mice and roaches have been. If I don't think it was disease, I save it to give to feed other hives or give to weak hives the next year.

    Odfrank... I have never frozen a comb either.

    cchoganjr

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Baker Oregon
    Posts
    2,408

    Default Re: Dead Hives(2), is Honey safe?

    I am eating some of the honey from my dead outs, but I know what finished them off (mites and a prolonged cold spell) and they died well after freezing temperatures came around so I have no worries about vermin in the hive. The rest I am saving to give my splits and replacement colonies a boost.
    Dan Hayden 4 Years. 12 hives. Tx Free. USDA Zone 5b.

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