Hive Hemorrhaging Bees
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Delta, BC Canada
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    269

    Default Hive Hemorrhaging Bees

    One of my hives has been losing bees like crazy over the past few weeks, I'm guessing largely because I caught the high mite count too late. I do have a couple questions though, given the photos posted:

    1) Is the large collection of bees on the bottom board a result of frenzied robbing and a world war in the hive? All the honey was gone by the time I noticed that.

    2) There are a few of these black looking bees here and there which I'm guessing might be Paralysis Virus ... which, if so, is my remaining hive essentially doomed?

    IMG_2918.jpg

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    IMG_2920.jpg

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    53,922

    Default Re: Hive Hemorrhaging Bees

    By all means do a mite count, but massive die offs are more likely to be from pesticides...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 42y 40h 39yTF

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    3,291

    Default Re: Hive Hemorrhaging Bees

    Its also possible bees are starving to death. But it sounds like something else could have caused them to end up at this point.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Delta, BC Canada
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    269

    Default Re: Hive Hemorrhaging Bees

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    By all means do a mite count, but massive die offs are more likely to be from pesticides...
    I have been suspicious of pesticides ... unfortunately my hives are surrounded by farmland with crops such as blueberries, cranberries and potatoes (which are all heavily sprayed). I however found very high mite levels a couple months ago and treated with both MAQs (and when that didn't work) and Apivar. Prior to that I was attempting to go treatment-free.

    so at this point I don't know whether it's the mites or pesticides or something like the Paralytic Virus that's finishing them off ... in masses.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Hillsboro, Wisconsin, USA
    Posts
    1,688

    Default Re: Hive Hemorrhaging Bees

    Meet the farmers around you and ask what and if they spray.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Delta, BC Canada
    Posts
    269

    Default Re: Hive Hemorrhaging Bees

    They're at my in-laws place ... I'm not entirely sure what they're spraying with, but I see them spraying constantly.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Cullman, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    1,240

    Default Re: Hive Hemorrhaging Bees

    If the bees had been robbed, there would be no brood, larva or eggs left, & the queen would be gone.
    Last year I had one hive over run with varroah . I did not diagnose it, the bees were just anemic, almost would not fly at all ( I was bottle feeding them in the hive while scratching my head & looking dumb. I finally sent a sample to the bee lab in maryland )
    This hive did not appear to effect my other hives.

    "(Farmers spraying constantly )" -- This would be your cue to move the bees.
    Good luck. CE
    Started summer of 2013, just another new guy, tinkering with bees.

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Delta, BC Canada
    Posts
    269

    Default Re: Hive Hemorrhaging Bees

    Quote Originally Posted by tech.35058 View Post
    If the bees had been robbed, there would be no brood, larva or eggs left, & the queen would be gone.
    Last year I had one hive over run with varroah . I did not diagnose it, the bees were just anemic, almost would not fly at all ( I was bottle feeding them in the hive while scratching my head & looking dumb. I finally sent a sample to the bee lab in maryland )
    This hive did not appear to effect my other hives.

    "(Farmers spraying constantly )" -- This would be your cue to move the bees.
    Good luck. CE
    Interesting ... I didn't know that about robbing actually. The queen is still intact and there is brood, although not enough nurse bees now to cover it all. All the honey that was there (quite a bit) is totally gone, and I'm beginning to think now that because of the ridiculous dry spell we've had, with virtually no rain for a couple months ... the bees may have starved. I'm feeding now (for the past 1.5 weeks) but I'm not sure they'll be able to build up again for the winter given that I'm likely in a dearth now.

    Agreed the hives need to be moved ... I have nowhere viable, but plan on starting in a new spot next spring.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    KC, MO, USA
    Posts
    4,646

    Default Re: Hive Hemorrhaging Bees

    Suggest moving your bees.

    >blueberries, cranberries and potatoes (which are all heavily sprayed).

    blueberries alone are hard on bees. Others have problems with hives on them.

    Each crop has it's own protocol. Your bees could be exposed to wave after wave of pesticides.

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