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  1. #1

    Default First hive dead - what can I salvage...

    I had my first hive this last spring. I thought I was doing well all the way until October. Lets just say that I learned a lot about what not to do.

    Now - 2 weeks ago, my hive was still alive and seemed to possibly be going to make it. Then we had 8 degree weather this last week and when I checked them today (68 degree weather) I found them all dead. They were clustered on the middle frames and look to have starved. I have learned that I should have moved the honey stores from the box just above them down to the deep.

    My question is this: Can I use the comb that they left behind for my hive that I am getting this spring? There are dead bees (head first) in a couple frames. Pollen in quite a few frames - some that is turning moldy. And other frames that are clean and nice looking.

    I dont see any damage from wax moths and no other disease issues.

    What can I salvage? And how should I prepare them/store them for the new hive?

    Thanks much!

    Matt

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Fayetteville, WV
    Posts
    57

    Default Re: First hive dead - what can I salvage...

    Save it all and reuse it, it will give your new bees a great headstart. It sounds as if they staved to death, the ones in the comb were probably looking for honey deep in the cell when they expired, just shake them out. I would probably bring any frames with honey inside if you have space to store them that isn't overly humid, I have also heard of people freezing them. Clean frames can be stored with paramoth crystals to keep moths at bay, but be sure to air them out before you use them again. The mold on the pollen I don't think will be a problem and will be cleaned up by the new batch of bees you install. Hope this helps.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Brown County, IN
    Posts
    2,025

    Default Re: First hive dead - what can I salvage...

    Shake out the dead bees and add a new package of bees in the spring. With drawn comb, they should take off quickly. I've often got honey crops from packages started on drawn comb.

    Depending on your winter temps, you'll probably have your new bees before wax moths become a problem. I just close up dead outs and leave them until spring.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Hudson, WI USA
    Posts
    2,179

    Default Re: First hive dead - what can I salvage...

    Matt if you don't have paramoth, don't want to use it, and have some space: The frames can be stored by putting them on some kind of rack, or hanging them where there is lots of air and light around each individual frame. Wax moths are creatures of the dark and stay away from open exposed frames. Frames with honey shouldn't be left out in the open as they will get robbed out on a warm day. A freezer is another alternative I've heard of for storing frames, but mine is never big enough. All the above being said - I don't know if small hive beetles are prevalent in your area and if you have to worry about them finding your frames?

  5. #5

    Default Re: First hive dead - what can I salvage...

    I am relieved to hear that I can use them. I will store them in our large freezer until time to put them to use.

    Thank you all for the replies.

    Matt

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Kaysville, Utah, USA
    Posts
    384

    Default Re: First hive dead - what can I salvage...

    I'm sorry your hive didn't make it.

    I don't mean to change the subject, but do you really need to move honey stores around during the winter? It's been so dang cold here for so long I'm afraid to open the hive up and mess around with things.
    Don't provoke a hive full of angry bees.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    JACKSON OHIO
    Posts
    485

    Default Re: First hive dead - what can I salvage...

    Your bees died most likely to starting of brood raising and then the cold snap and not leaving the brood to move to their stores.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Plantsville, Ct.
    Posts
    176

    Default Re: First hive dead - what can I salvage...

    If I freeze ( for 24 hrs.?) the frames that have pollen and some capped brood from a dead out, what should I do with the capped brood, mostly drone cells? I was thinking about putting it in place of an undrawn frame in on of the stronger hives. The pollen doesn't look as if it's moldy at all.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Ukraine Kharkiv
    Posts
    14

    Default Re: First hive dead - what can I salvage...

    It is ok, colleague. It was your first bitter experience and I hope that you will be professional beekeeper with strong and big apiary in the future.

    Quote Originally Posted by thegriffiths View Post
    : Can I use the comb that they left behind for my hive that I am getting this spring? There are dead bees (head first) in a couple frames. Pollen in quite a few frames - some that is turning moldy. And other frames that are clean and nice looking.
    Of course you can use it. Be sure that you will meet sore requirements during the winter. Put your frames to the empty hive or another box, also do not forget to put here the leaves of walnut and cover everything with polyethylene. The room where frames will stored should have good air conditioning.

    In any case, there are no preconditions to do not use these frames again.
    Automate your apiary with Apiary Manager - increase efficiency and systematize your work
    http://apiary-manager.net

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Laurel Hill, Fl
    Posts
    434

    Default Re: First hive dead - what can I salvage...

    Matt, Did you harvest honey this year? From the brood nest? Did you not feed any as fall came on. I ask because it's amazing to me that they could have starved to death in Oct.... You had stores in a box above them, but they had so little they couldn't survive till the temps got above 50? I'm a new beek and this concerns me. However, I rarely have an extended period where bees are stuck in a cluster. That said, we have a very long summer dearth and stores go down all summer.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    McClure, OH
    Posts
    1,017

    Default Re: First hive dead - what can I salvage...

    Quote Originally Posted by thegriffiths View Post
    I had my first hive this last spring. I thought I was doing well all the way until October. Lets just say that I learned a lot about what not to do.

    Now - 2 weeks ago, my hive was still alive and seemed to possibly be going to make it. Then we had 8 degree weather this last week and when I checked them today (68 degree weather) I found them all dead. They were clustered on the middle frames and look to have starved. I have learned that I should have moved the honey stores from the box just above them down to the deep.

    My question is this: Can I use the comb that they left behind for my hive that I am getting this spring? There are dead bees (head first) in a couple frames. Pollen in quite a few frames - some that is turning moldy. And other frames that are clean and nice looking.

    I dont see any damage from wax moths and no other disease issues.

    What can I salvage? And how should I prepare them/store them for the new hive?

    Thanks much!

    Matt
    Hi Matt:

    I agreee with the comments on the other posters. However, you said you only had bees on couple of frames? If that is the case, your cluster was way too small. I am assuming your hive was in a standard 2 deeps.

    If the cluster was as small as I think it was, it was probably why they froze/starved. Did you check or treat for mites in the fall?

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    5,955

    Default Re: First hive dead - what can I salvage...

    Hmmm ... the first 7 posts in this thread are from LAST winter ...
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Plantsville, Ct.
    Posts
    176

    Default Re: First hive dead - what can I salvage...

    Ha!!😄 glad someone finally picked up on that. Figured my question would get a thought or 2, not reignite the original post!
    Do any other thoughts on using the frames with dead capped brood from a robbed out/starve out?( go back 8 posts)

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Plantsville, Ct.
    Posts
    176

    Default Re: First hive dead - what can I salvage...

    Actually go back just 6. 😜

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