Small hive is disappearing - help, what do we do?!?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Denver, CO
    Posts
    4

    Default Small hive is disappearing - help, what do we do?!?

    We are novice beekeepers in Denver, CO and are baffled by what our hive is doing. We got a nuc in early May and they went to town establishing a healthy hive and bursting population right away. However, as a note, they have never drawn out all of their frames with comb, they seem to have avoided certain frames throughout, but mostly on the frames most westerly. After about three weeks, when most of the bottom box was drawn out and getting full, we added a top brood box. Same thing up top, they avoided doing anything on certain frames, but they were quickly filled with lots of honey. So we added a honey super. Nothing ever happened in the honey super, no comb, no nothing, so in preparation for fall/winter, we took it off, thinking that they needed to just concentrate on the two bottom boxes and their supplies for the winter. In our most recent check, there are a LOT less bees! Basically two frames (of 20) of bees. We located the queen, she's there, but there is almost no brood, mostly empty frames in the bottom box (comb but no brood or honey) and most of the top box frames have a good amount of honey.

    HELP!!! What happened!! What can we do?!?!?

    I've added pictures so you can get a general idea of what we're looking at.IMG_4368.jpgIMG_4371.jpgIMG_4372.jpgIMG_4375.jpgIMG_4368.jpgIMG_4371.jpgIMG_4372.jpgIMG_4375.jpg

    Any insight or ideas would be greatly appreciated!

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    81

    Default Re: Small hive is disappearing - help, what do we do?!?

    Did you ever treat for mites? Put them in a nuc maybe and feed. Doesn't look good

  4. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    5,486

    Default Re: Small hive is disappearing - help, what do we do?!?

    That's a typical spotty brood pattern of a heavy varroa infestation and now they've collapsed down to almost nothing which is also a typical symptom of a heavy varroa mite load.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Knoxville, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    671

    Default Re: Small hive is disappearing - help, what do we do?!?

    I agree with the other people that replied. Looks a lot like varroa mites. This hive may not make it. If you lose it, get some more bees next year and proactively deal with mites.
    Beekeeping 6 Years - 12 production hives and about 12 nucs - Treatment OAV Only

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    FRASER VALLEY, BRITISH COLUMBIA
    Posts
    2,072

    Default Re: Small hive is disappearing - help, what do we do?!?

    looks like efb. When I turned the picture around saw what looks like a varroa on a larvae. With heavy mite loads bees get PMS and that can exhibit some of the symptoms of efb and afb. This hive is pretty much doomed.
    Top box full of honey is normal, bottom box almost no honey is normal.

    Jean-Marc

  7. #6
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    5,486

    Default Re: Small hive is disappearing - help, what do we do?!?

    I was going to mention a little EFB looking yellowing in larva right in the middle, but you never know with pics, sometimes it's just the lighting.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    FRASER VALLEY, BRITISH COLUMBIA
    Posts
    2,072

    Default Re: Small hive is disappearing - help, what do we do?!?

    Pretty much time to put an order for a package or 2 to replace your loss.

    Jean-Marc

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