Dying bees on ground twitching - not nosema or mites
Results 1 to 4 of 4
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Frederick, MD

    Default Dying bees on ground twitching - not nosema or mites

    I am in mid-MD. I posted about this hive recently on a FaceBook forum, but at the time mistakenly thought these dead bees were all drones being kicked out. They are not. They are workers who have been dying for several weeks. The smell caught my attention They drop out or are carried out and just walk around a little, or twitch or languish on their back or sides with legs moving a little before they succumb. Bee Lab reports no Nosema. Only 1% mites. 24 other colonies are in the apiary and none exhibit dying bees. Any ideas of what is causing this? Some sort of virus? I fear there is nothing I can do. They are still a strong colony with top deep full of capped stores, the 2018 queen in the middle box with brood. Was a swarm from this spring I caught 10 miles away. Drew two deeps and three medium supers of comb! Here is a short video of the dead/dying bees. Any ideas?


  2. Remove Advertisements

  3. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    syracuse n.y.

    Default Re: Dying bees on ground twitching - not nosema or mites

    post #6 you have to go in the hive and watch some of the bees, like the second and third utube link.

    mike syracuse ny
    Whatever you subsidize you get more of. Ronald Reagan

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Ardnamurchan and Fife, Scotland

    Default Re: Dying bees on ground twitching - not nosema or mites

    Possibly one of the paralysis viruses. If the bees look black and oily - tricky to tell on the corpses, you really need live bees - then chronic bee paralysis virus is the likely culprit. If you open the box you can usually find a few sad individuals tottering around shivering and twitching on the frames. Characteristically seen in strong colonies at the peak of the season.
    The Apiarist - beekeeping in Fife, Scotland

  5. #4

    Default Re: Dying bees on ground twitching - not nosema or mites

    It may be what we germans call "Schwarzsucht" but you did not tell of black shiny bees. The video seems to show those?
    With paralysis virus the bees are not as black, many are looking normal but shake and cannot fly.



    The infected bees are hairless, thus they look smaller are black and shiny. Infested bees have splayed, shaky wings are often flightless. Weakened bees are pushed out of the hive by the healthy ones. Peak of infestation usually from late May to early July.

    Triggering factors:

    Robbery, inbreeding, metabolic disorders (pollen deficiency), strong forest habit, bacterial attack, infestation of viruses or fungi.

    Measures to combat:

    There are no remedies. Fighting the cause: stop robbery, take hives out of the forest habit.

    Low remedy by feeding with a thin sugar solution or blossom honey.


    Destroying dead bees (infestation by fungi or viruses can be contagious).


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts