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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Cook County, IL
    Posts
    1

    Default Found This Red Stuff On A Few Frames

    While going through one of our hives last week, we found this red stuff on just a couple of the frames. It was pretty firm, if not hard, when poked with a hive tool; and had no odor. The frames are located near the hive opening. We are located in Northeastern Illinois, just about two miles from the Indiana state line. I've asked around a few of the Facebook beekeeping groups and have heard it could be anything from propolis to hummingbird nectar. Just thought I'd seek a few more opinions. Thanks for the help!
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Farmington, New Mexico
    Posts
    6,595

    Default Re: Found This Red Stuff On A Few Frames

    I'm assuming that the damage to the comb is from having been poked and prodded by a hive tool, otherwise there's a problem with how that comb looks regardless of the color.

    If the comb looked normal other than the red color, I'd say it's just hummingbird feed or some other man-made sugar based liquid that your bees found useful.
    Nobody ruins my day without my permission, and I refuse to grant it...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Solano, California, USA
    Posts
    1,369

    Default Re: Found This Red Stuff On A Few Frames

    Looks like propolis or some synthetic replacement which the bees often use when available. Had some stealing all the caulking off a trailer 20 years back. Took a while to figure out what was going on as grey propolis is very unusual especial in the yard they where gathering it in. BTW look like them bees need a good dose of syrup or three.......

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Santa Rosa, CA
    Posts
    57

    Default Re: Found This Red Stuff On A Few Frames

    It's definitely propolis. Why they feel the need to propolize by the entrance is anyone's guess. Maybe because many bees hate to use the plastic comb shown in the photos.
    Becky

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,217

    Default Re: Found This Red Stuff On A Few Frames

    Propolis from some poplar trees is red. Propolis from cottonwoods and other poplar trees can be green or even gray. I would guess propolis mixed with wax or just propolis.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Morris Plains, NJ USA
    Posts
    240

    Default Re: Found This Red Stuff On A Few Frames

    Looks like they all went out for a pizza and got sick.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    27,227

    Default Re: Found This Red Stuff On A Few Frames

    "Before the city." Propolis.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,217

    Default Re: Found This Red Stuff On A Few Frames

    Sometimes the propolis foragers set up a staging area to put the propolis for the propolis workers who are reinforcing cells, stopping cracks etc. ...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    2,874

    Default Re: Found This Red Stuff On A Few Frames

    You got any worker brood in that hive? Even the frame I can see in the box looks almost all drone brood.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Solano, California, USA
    Posts
    1,369

    Default Re: Found This Red Stuff On A Few Frames

    Quote Originally Posted by JRG13 View Post
    You got any worker brood in that hive? Even the frame I can see in the box looks almost all drone brood.
    Or worse.... Not looking very good. My bet is that hive is toast in a month or less.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,899

    Default Re: Found This Red Stuff On A Few Frames

    Red propolis. We get lots of it. Streams down the outside of boxes below holes on the boxes the bees are trying to plug. I have seen red propolis inside split eucalyptus logs.


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