Newspaper combine
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Timonium, Maryland
    Posts
    382

    Default Newspaper combine

    Hello all.

    Getting ready for winter.
    I inspecting my hives today (brief inspection) to put hive beetle traps in and noticed one of the hives is too weak
    I noticed it was getting weaker, but was assuming it was a wax moth, but it turn that it is a hive beetle, so I finally found a time to put traps today.

    My both hives were 3 deeps.
    Today the weak hive had only 1 deep full of bees, the other deep was completely empty (except a few bees), so I downsize it to 1 (one) deep. I hope the traps will do the work and hive will get back to be strong.

    The other hive was strong, but weaker than current weak hive. That hive currently is 3 deeps still and booming with bees.

    So I am putting my thoughts how to make my weak hive strong again?

    1. Should I feed it? sugar syrup 2:1?
    2. Should I do get a deep from strong hive with bees and put it on the top of weak hive and do "newspaper merge" ?Of course I'll make sure not to move queen to the weak place.

    Any suggestions ?

    Thank you.
    Artur.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Dayton, OH USA
    Posts
    328

    Default Re: Newspaper combine

    A question to ask is why the weak hive is weak. Does it have a good queen, still laying well? If so, you can attemp boosting it with a combine like you say. At this time of the year, it will not build up well enough on its own, even with feeding, in time for winter.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Timonium, Maryland
    Posts
    382

    Default Re: Newspaper combine

    It's weak because of hive beetle infestation
    I put traps today.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Massillon, Ohio
    Posts
    5,585

    Default Re: Newspaper combine

    Sometimes a surge in hive beetle infestation is an indication that something else has already weakened the colony, and then in it's compromised condition the hive is unable to properly defend itself against the beetles. Downsizing and adding traps will help the colony keep the beetles in check, but you may want to look deeper for an underlying cause.

    How does the brood look? Have you been checking the Varroa mite loads?
    To everything there is a season....

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Timonium, Maryland
    Posts
    382

    Default Re: Newspaper combine

    Brood looked ok, although some of the puppies were drugged out to clean the cells - could be because of the beetle maggots.

    I treated the for mites 2 weeks ago using OAD as I did last year and few days after that they started weakening
    The treatment weakens them, but not as much so they start downsizing.

    I also change the entrance size to 1" so they can protect it better.
    I am thinking to do another session of OAV, but afraid to damage them even more.
    I think another issue that might weaken them could be sudden change of the weather, but less likely cause It didn't do anything to the other hive, as well as the OAD I did to weak hive I did to the current strong hive.

    I am just confused how the strongest hive could become that weak and the weakest hive became that strong.
    It feels like the bees from strong hive went to weak hive.
    Something went wrong - what I am not sure
    I am debating that should I feed them or not.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Massillon, Ohio
    Posts
    5,585

    Default Re: Newspaper combine

    Quote Originally Posted by Artur_M View Post
    Brood looked ok, although some of the puppies were drugged out to clean the cells - could be because of the beetle maggots.
    If you have slimed frames in the hive they should be removed. Take a close look again at your brood. See if you notice anything unusual.


    Quote Originally Posted by Artur_M View Post
    I treated the for mites 2 weeks ago using OAD as I did last year and few days after that they started weakening
    Dribble should be applied one time when the hive is broodless, probably the December time frame in your area. None of the brood under cappings were affected when you treated.



    Quote Originally Posted by Artur_M View Post
    I am just confused how the strongest hive could become that weak and the weakest hive became that strong.
    There may be other possibilities, but my guess would be mite pressure. If you were a little late treating for mites it makes sense that the strongest hive with a higher volume of brood would end up with a higher number of mites. Your mite population probably peaked in early August, and those few weeks before treatment may have taken it's toll on the colony. All of the emerging bees after the OAD could have had serious issues due to mites and really weakened the hive, opening the door for pests ( wax moth and hive beetles).

    I've seen booming colonies succumb to extended mite pressure and crash within a few weeks time.

    Take another close look at the brood. If you suspect there is a problem with mites, a series of OAV right now can't hurt.
    To everything there is a season....

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    10,840

    Default Re: Newspaper combine

    Artur, as I recall, you made a vaporization device with what some suggested was a heater with too low of a wattage (not able to deliver adequate heat for proper vaporization).

    If there are higher levels of varroa even after vaporization, it could be there is an issue with that vaporizer. If you have not done before & after varroa counts (sugar shake or alcohol wash) to confirm the effectiveness of that device, that may be part of the root cause of the hive weakness.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Timonium, Maryland
    Posts
    382

    Default Re: Newspaper combine

    I did the OAV at about 10AM this morning using the little toy I made.
    I didn't do it as it is suggested - some of vapors went out. - maybe I lost some efficacy.

    Let's see how it goes.
    How soon can I expect the mite-drops?

    As for weak hive, it looks they are managing 1 deep better with small entrance.
    Unfortunately I don't have much time to get to my hives, only on weekends - limited time and the days are short too.

    I'll try to add top feeder with 2:1 syrup.

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