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  1. #1
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    Default Walk away did not go well

    One of my splits did not go well this year. The hives got over crowded this year before I split and I believe they were already into swarm prep. One side was dead and the other side doesn't look strong. The dead side was full of worms, not sure if they are wax moth or hive beetle. They are small so I am thinking wax moth. Fingers crossed on the other split but I might be too late on adding supers for that one too.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Muhlenberg County, KY, USA
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    14

    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    Questions?

    Where you using nucs 5 frame or three Frame?
    Did you use drawn comb?
    How did you split did you keep the original hive intact then just take frames out for two splits or just split the hive down the middle?

    Just a guess on my part but often times when you split into full size boxes the population density is to low to fend off beetles or moths. Not to mention varroa.

    Did you put a queen in either box or where you planning on raising your own?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Strafford County, NH
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    720

    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    Could they be fly larvae, after the decaying brood?

    I noticed little white inchwormy things crawling on my inner cover last summer and thought - oh no, hive beetle larvae. But then I noticed several flies around, I believe the flies were after the pollen patty. I never saw beetles, even scurrying away, and nothing ever came of it, so I'm pretty convinced it was flies.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    KC, MO, USA
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    1,168

    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    I had one like this too, made a 3 way split, one with Q + 3 frames, one with Q cell and 3 frames and left the original hive with one capped Q cell.

    The odd this is the one with Q cell and 3 frames was the one that swarmed. I am hoping there are enough bees to keep the remaining brood from getting chilled.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Searcy, AR, USA
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    60

    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    Flies lay eggs in the dead brood and maggots hatch and eat on the bodies of the dead brood in the cells. Ive seen that happen on a frame in a weak hive.
    Rick Brooks: Keeping bees and pastoring a church are similar...I try to keep them both from swarming.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    SNOW SHOE PA USA
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    1,241

    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    If you did a walk away split like your Suppose to and both sides are dead I'd be looking at your VARROA level's . If I do recall you don't do much with your bee's it may be time to do a alcohol wash on your remaining hives.
    Was there webs? Bet it was WAX MOTH. You should get it to your hives more often to make sure things are going right just saying to do a walk away split and to have both sides die then some thing went way wrong.
    Say hello to the bad guy!
    year five==== 31 hives==== T{OAV}

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    Did I say both sides are dead? No.
    For those that are new to beesource you can check out my 8000+ posts... I will save you some time. I do willy nilly splits as Mark would call them. You can reference Michael Bush's site on walk a way splits, I do not check for anything so the condition of the hive when I split will determine the success. if you split too early you will not have drones and if you split too late you will not have eggs and most likely the hive is in the swarm mode. I believe this was the case with this last failure.

    For most beekeepers this is nuts. But for hobbyist that only want two or three hives this is not so nuts. It is mathematical, you only have to replace your winter losses. The more hives you have the easier it is to maintain that number. Three works for me. Two is harder and four or five gets easier.

    I am trying to hone in on the right timing. The split has to be late enough that there are DOA areas to mate with the queen but not too late that they have already started backfilling.

    A couple of year ago Nabber was hammering me about being unemployed. I have come to the conclusion that it is best to be unemployed if you want to be a beekeeper. So if it should happen to you look at it as a golden opportunity to become a beekeeper.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    Quote Originally Posted by GLOCK View Post
    If you did a walk away split like your Suppose to and both sides are dead I'd be looking at your VARROA level's .
    I will stick my neck out on this one and say this is a worry for commercial operations. As a hobbyist it is of no concern. The ones that die you don't want and the ones that live are the ones you want to propagate. Knock yourself out with your testing and what not. As long as you treat you are on the chemical treadmill beholding to corporate America. Or is that corporate Germany?

    Seriously, as a beekeeper you can do the dumbest mistakes known to mankind and if you are persistent (that means not giving up) you can succeed with keeping bees. Only the week at heart fail.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  9. #9
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    Mar 2011
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    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    Quote Originally Posted by RLBrooks View Post
    Flies lay eggs in the dead brood and maggots hatch and eat on the bodies of the dead brood in the cells. Ive seen that happen on a frame in a weak hive.
    The problem with that theory is there wasn't any brood. No webs yet. BTW my chickens massacred the worms. I bet they liked the nectar also. Maybe it was fermented and our eggs are spiked now!
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    Quote Originally Posted by Acebird View Post
    The split has to be late enough that there are DOA areas to mate with the queen but not too late that they have already started backfilling.
    DCA, Brian. Not DOA. DCA, drone congregation area.

    Is writing DCA area like saying ATM machine?

    Just because I love you.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    lol mark, I was thinking dead on arrival. Just couldn't think of the right buzz word.

    Btw, both sides are dead. Chickens area cleaning up the mess as we speak. So now I got another problem, what do I do with all this equipment?
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    Yup, I can see how you would have a problem.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
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    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
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    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    > Did I say both sides are dead? No.

    Looks like GLOCK has ESP!


    >
    Btw, both sides are dead.




    (for those challenged by acronyms, ESP is Extra Sensory Perception)


    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  14. #14
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    Dec 2009
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    SNOW SHOE PA USA
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    1,241

    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    There are bee havers and beekeepers .
    Bee havers poop in one hand and wish in the other and see what fill's up first.
    And a bee keeper masters[or should I say try]hive management and pest control to have a beehaver around is not good for the over all bee population.
    A walk away split can't be any easier if that fails you better check your beekeeping skills .
    I mean that in the nicest way possible.
    Say hello to the bad guy!
    year five==== 31 hives==== T{OAV}

  15. #15
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    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    Quote Originally Posted by Rader Sidetrack View Post
    (for those challenged by acronyms, ESP is Extra Sensory Perception)
    Then what does ESPN mean?
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  16. #16
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    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    Quote Originally Posted by GLOCK View Post
    There are bee havers and beekeepers .
    Bee havers poop in one hand and wish in the other and see what fill's up first.
    And a bee keeper masters[or should I say try]hive management and pest control to have a beehaver around is not good for the over all bee population.
    A walk away split can't be any easier if that fails you better check your beekeeping skills .
    I mean that in the nicest way possible.
    Brian is a pioneer, Glock. Walking his own path. Following his own star.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
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    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
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    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    In most contexts, ESPN >> Entertainment and Sports Programming Network

    but it could mean >> Enological Society of the Pacific Northwest

    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  18. #18
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    Mar 2011
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    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    Quote Originally Posted by GLOCK View Post
    A walk away split can't be any easier if that fails you better check your beekeeping skills .
    That is an interesting comment Glock. It implies that if you do a textbook split you will never have failure. I don't agree and I don't think I am alone on that thought. I do agree that walk away splits are by far the easiest to do.
    Almost all hobbies have a time commitment. You become more proficient at a hobby if you spend more time at it.

    The only regret I have is if I could have spent more time with a watchful eye on the hives I might know for sure why one split is booming while the other died out. Both splits were done the same way.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  19. #19
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    Nov 2011
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    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
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    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    Quote Originally Posted by Acebird View Post
    It implies that if you do a textbook split you will never have failure.
    Textbook split? Is that what you did?

    A walk away split. You take a frame of eggs, two frames of emerging brood and two frames of pollen and honey and put them in a 5 frame nuc, shake in some extra nurse bees (making sure you don't get the queen), put the lid on and walk away. Come back in four weeks and see if the queen is laying.

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beessplits.htm
    Your 'willy nilly' split method does not seem to involve checking to see if you have eggs.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Bakersville, NC
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    43

    Default Re: Walk away did not go well

    Apparently in referring to Varroa, Acebird said:

    Quote Originally Posted by Acebird View Post
    I will stick my neck out on this one and say this is a worry for commercial operations. As a hobbyist it is of no concern. The ones that die you don't want and the ones that live are the ones you want to propagate. Knock yourself out with your testing and what not. As long as you treat you are on the chemical treadmill beholding to corporate America. Or is that corporate Germany?
    Acebird is free to do as he chooses. For me, compared to hives dead and riddled with worms after a basic split, I'd prefer some intervention to that. Luckily there are many options between hard-chems and do-nothing. Since there are lots of brand new beeks reading these posts, here are some links with responses to non-intervention/no-treatment strategies that supposedly lead to survivor bees, but actually don't.

    http://www.honeybeesuite.com/let-the...e-bees-really/
    "Being a caretaker means you tend to your charge, look after it, and keep it as comfortable as possible. If it happens to be a horde of honey bees, you make sure it has fresh air, a water source, and a place to forage. You treat foulbrood and, yes, even mites.

    The details of how you proceed are up to you. If you prefer not to use chemicals, fine. Great, in fact. But you will need to use another method, be it mechanical separation, brood cycle interruption, or weekly applications of confectioner’s sugar. The choices are yours alone, but they are choices you must make.

    Do I think there are exceptions? Sure. I believe in scientific inquiry and research. I believe in carefully designed experimentation with controls, data collection, statistical analysis, and peer review. But if you are not doing research, if are going around half-cocked pretending you are Darwin and preaching “survival of the fittest,” if you are letting your bees die from Varroa mites, you are just plain lazy. How much easier it is to do absolutely nothing and proclaim you are “letting nature take its course.”"

    and
    http://scientificbeekeeping.com/queens-for-pennies/

    "Unfortunately, there is also a great deal of confusion as to what “treatment free” beekeeping really means. Allow me to use an analogy to explain:

    Dairymen prefer to keep Holstein cattle. Holsteins are thin-skinned, thoroughly domesticated cattle selected solely for milk production. Their normal care requires shelter, supplemental feeding, routine vaccinations, and treatment with antibiotics. If a dairyman turned his Holsteins out on the range to fend for themselves without care, and half of them died each year, he would be accused of having committed animal neglect—“the failure to provide the basic care required for an animal to thrive.”

    Yet this is exactly what thousands of recreational beekeepers do every year. Under the misconception that they are practicing “treatment free” beekeeping, they are in actuality simply neglecting their domesticated animals. The reason for this is that they are starting with commercial package bees—bees akin to Holstein cattle, in that they are bred for high brood and honey production under standard management practices (notably mite management, but also supplemental feeding or antibiotic treatment if indicated). Most commercial bee stocks should be considered as domesticated animals. There is absolutely no reason to expect that your wishful thinking will miraculously transform your newly-purchased “domesticated” bees into hardy survivor stock able to survive as wild animals without standard care and treatment.

    Now don’t get me wrong, I am no more criticizing the commercial queen producers than I would criticize the dedicated breeders of Holstein cattle. The queen breeders are producing the best breeds for beekeepers willing to provide their colonies with the “standard” degree of husbandry (which includes at this time, treatment(s) of some sort for varroa). I have no problem whatsoever with that; but my crystal ball says that someday the market will dwindle for bees that require regular treatment for mites.

    Do not delude yourself. Allowing domesticated package colonies to die year after year is not in any way, shape, or form a contribution to the breeding of mite-resistant stocks. There is a vast difference between breeding for survivor stock and simply allowing commercial bees to die from neglect! By introducing commercial bees year after year into an area, and then allowing those package colonies to first produce drones and then to later die from varroa, these well-meaning but misguided beekeepers screw up any evolutionary progress that the local feral populations might be making towards developing natural resistance to varroa. Not only that, but those collapsing “mite bombs” create problems for your neighbors. Referring to yourself as a bee-keeper confers upon you a responsibility to the local beekeeping community. Allowing hives to collapse from AFB or varroa makes you a disease-spreading nuisance!

    Update April 15, 2014: I’ve received a great deal of positive feedback from experienced beekeepers who have been frustrated by all the well-intentioned, but sadly misguided, feel-good dreamers who don’t understand the difference between working with nature to promote varroa-resistant bee stocks, versus neglecting livestock that you have taken under your care. I like Rusty Burlew’s blog ““Let the bees be bees” Really?”

    A Solution

    Enough scolding. I strongly support those willing to actually practice selective breeding for treatment-free (or minimal treatment) locally-adapted stocks of bees. But let me be frank (try to stop me); if you start your hive with commercial stock, then by all means care for them as domesticated animals! If you want to go treatment free, then start with survivor stock bred to be naturally resistant to mites and viruses, such as VSH, Russian, or locally-adapted ferals. Do not kid yourself into thinking that allowing innocent domesticated bees to die a slow and ugly death is the same thing as breeding for survivor stock—“breeding” instead means the propagation of bees that don’t die [1]—the key word being propagation. And this is a frustration for many well-intentioned beginners—no one in their area is propagating survivor stock for sale. That is why I wrote this article."

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