No bees, what now?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    2

    Default No bees, what now?

    I have an eight-frame hive with 4 medium boxes and a slotted bottom board. It's the result of combining two weak hives in late summer. (I'm in Chicago.) I checked recently and confirmed what I suspected: there are almost bees in the hive and those that are there are dead. When I combined the hives in late summer I killed one of the queens. Maybe I inadvertently left the hive queenless? I also didn't treat for mites. (A mistake, I see now.) Could that have been the problem? In any case, what do I do now with the frames that have honey and pollen in them? There are quite a few.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    Joliet, il
    Posts
    1,876

    Default Re: No bees, what now?

    The question for you is are you going to get more bees or are you done? If done harvest honey and sell the rest. If you are going to get more bees then id make sure why they died and if its from mites then you can start a package with that equipment. Other reasons why they died others will chime in. In in joliet i treated and thankfull i did. Good luck.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Lamar Co. Alabama, USA
    Posts
    4,141

    Default Re: No bees, what now?

    Sounds like either one of the two or both. Look at the comb and see if there are light colored flecks in the cells (mite feces). If yes, mites probably killed them and no issues to reusing the frames, if there is no indication of disease.

    Freeze the frames for 48 hours minimum then store where mice and wax moths can't get to them. Use them this spring for your new hives. Get more bees ordered. Never give up.
    "Sometimes the best action, with bees, is no action at all."

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    10,252

    Default Re: No bees, what now?

    This is one issue I have with the common practise of combining weak hives in fall. If they are weak there may be a REASON for that and combining just spreads the problem to whichever bees they are combined with.

    If there is a genuine, non disease related reason for them being weak, such as for example, they were a late made nuc, then yes, combine. But if they are a hive that has just done poorly or dwindled, better to discover the reason for that before dumping them on another hive.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Olmsted County, MN USA
    Posts
    86

    Default Re: No bees, what now?

    Fall dinks don't survive winter. Two fall dinks combined into one…die. I've learned it the hard way.
    Christian (Chris) Schad
    Website: TheBeeShed.com, Facebook: The Bee Shed

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Issaquah,WA,USA
    Posts
    2,769

    Default Re: No bees, what now?

    Bad plus bad don't make good. So two wrongs don't make a right.

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