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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    Default Causes of hive losses(nature wise)

    I know that this forum is meant to do exactly what I am asking but if anyone is willing to add, I would appreciate it. I am looking for a simple listing to reference to of the reasons why bees/colonies die throughout the year and if it is more common/specific t a region of the world. Many non-bee people ask me why bees/colonies die, but I usually only have a few reasons. No need for any explanations about them, unless you would like, just a listing is appreciated. This is what I have learned and am still learning more about. Please correct if any are wrong.Thanks, juzzer

    -Varroa mites
    -Hive beetles
    -American foulbrood
    -Colony collapse(not sure what causes it though)
    -Long and/or severe cold temperatures
    -Low honey stores

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Walker, Alabama, USA

    Default Re: Causes of hive losses(nature wise)

    Queen loss/failure

    Rusty Hills Farm -- home of AQHA A Rusty Zipper and Rusty's Bees.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA

    Default Re: Causes of hive losses(nature wise)

    >Queen loss/failure

    Yes. Often enough they swarm and the new queen doesn't make it back from mating. Many causes are possible such as a car windsheild, a swallow (swallowing?), dragonfly etc. Then they are hopelessly queenless. Starvation is a common cause in feral colonies. Sometimes they swarm, can't find a home, and set up housekeeping on a branch outside. In the far North, they are doomed.

    You also have less and less habitat and less and less forage as Urban sprawl eats up land. More peole cut down hollow trees rather than letting them live out their lives (and provide a home to bees and racoons...).

    Any population of any creature reaches a saturation point where survival becomes less likely until the population falls again.
    Michael Bush "Everything works if you let it." 42y 40h 39yTF

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Morro Bay, California, USA

    Default Re: Causes of hive losses(nature wise)

    -Queen failure due Black Queen Cell Virus
    -Queen failure due to Israeli paralytic virus (and similar infectious agents)
    -Queen failure due to simple age, accompanied with failed supersedure
    -Queen failure due to "rolling", physical injury by beekeepers
    -Brood failure due to Chalkbrood fungus
    -Tracheal mites (Isle of Wight disease)
    -External predation -- Bears, Skunks, Blue Jays, Hornets, Yellow Jackets
    -Absconding due to excess heat, disturbance or moisture
    -"Parasitic Mite Syndrome" multi-factor decline featuring European Foulbrood eruption.
    -Africanized mobile swarms temporarily usurping hive, followed by absconding.
    -Tropilaelaps mites in Europe and Asia

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    carney, maryland, USA

    Default Re: Causes of hive losses(nature wise)

    Could untimely warm spell for 3-5 days, which gets the queen laying like crazy, followed by bitter cold wipe out a hive. This was the scenario we had in Maryland late February - early March. I would imagine the nurse bees could have been spread out to keep brood warm, so that when cold came, the bees were not in cluster. Is this a possible cause?


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