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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Litchfield, CT, USA
    Posts
    415

    Default The grim reaper for bees

    I took advantage of the great weather today after work to check on the hives. I lost one of the overwintered nucs. I fed them like crazy in the fall and I thought they would be OK. They were clustered on top of the dry sugar. Frustrated. 5 left out of 11. One is weak and I am guessing it will be next. Small clusters. So much for sustainable... I am looking forward to the day when I am a wise old beekeeper.

    Again I hate this time of year! The grim reaper for bees is out and about. Do you ever get used to loosing a hive?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Brainerd, MN
    Posts
    533

    Default Re: The grim reaper for bees

    Lost five out of five this winter.
    Not Michael Bush. My name is Dan. Sorry for the confusion.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Great Falls Montana
    Posts
    3,844

    Default Re: The grim reaper for bees

    The national statistics are over 30% loss aren't they? I am overjoyed if I can do 80%. I think the biggest factor in anything beekeeping iso you know what your mite count is? That and feeding the bees both protein patties suppliment and sugar if neccessary in the early fall are key. If I lived as far north as Bush 84, I would sure have some of the wrap sold by B&B honeyfarms in Houston MN and use it. I know I do and I am south of Brainerd. Hell , you gotta be a cannuck to be north of there! And your bees need ventilation that they can control. But you are absolutely right it is a hard time losing bees.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Monroe County, Pennsylvania
    Posts
    167

    Default Re: The grim reaper for bees

    I was able to finally check on one of my hives yesterday, since we almost hit 50F. They were just under the inner cover. I placed a few grease/sugar patties on the top bars. This weekend and next week are forecasted in the 50's. I'll check on the other 3 on Saturday. So far, all 4 hives have survived with strong numbers.

    I agree with Vance....wrapping and ventilating are recommended.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    KC, MO, USA
    Posts
    1,101

    Default Re: The grim reaper for bees

    >I was able to finally check on one of my hives yesterday, since we almost hit 50F. They were just under the inner cover. I placed a few grease/sugar patties on the top bars.

    Bees dont eat grease, you are treating for Tracheal Mites.

    I would replace with fondant, syrup in a zip lock or dry sugar.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Monroe County, Pennsylvania
    Posts
    167

    Default Re: The grim reaper for bees

    Yes, FP. I just had these already prepared. Yesterday's temps were a surprise and it was an unplanned check on the hives. Our temps are supposed to dip again until the weekend. This weekend I will be able to add sugar.

  7. #7

    Default Re: The grim reaper for bees

    Remember that granulated sugar, candy boards, etc cannot be consumed by your bees without water. In instances where there is a big cluster of bees producing a significant amount of biological water vapor…that MAY suffice. If, on the other hand, the inside of your hive is dry, your bees must be able to forage for water outside of the hive to utilize the sugar. 5lbs of granulated sugar might be totally worthless to a small winter cluster.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

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