Think I'm all done
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    hastings n.y.
    Posts
    33

    Default Think I'm all done

    Had 3 hives left going into winter last year, all had 2 mediums of stores 1 was a late swarm but hoped for the best. 2 died sometime late winter all bees were in the bottom, now my feral bees (very strong hive) we're doing great as of 2 weeks ago, then 3-4 days ago only seen a couple of bees ( unusual) in 50 temp. Today went through the hive lots of dead bodies at the bottom, all the stores are gone and there's a handful of bee's flying , so as I'm looking in the candy box there she is! Couldn't believe she survived. I didn't know what to do so I hurried and put together a deep with some stores and old comb and closed it up. I have no idea what's going to happen but if they die I'm done, it's been a long journey and I refuse to keep paying ridiculous $ that keeps climbing every year. Sorry rant over.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Rosebud Missouri
    Posts
    4,233

    Default Re: Think I'm all done

    Quit spending money. Put out a couple of traps with some lemon grass oil and then whatever happens happens. You have the equipment already. Might get lucky.
    Good luck
    gww
    zone 5b

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Boston, MA, USA
    Posts
    262

    Default

    OP. The first step is to determine what killed your bees. 100% mortality of the hives points to a correctable problem.

    https://www.beverlybees.com/how-to-a...ey-bee-colony/

    http://mainebeekeepers.org/wp-conten...opsy-Chart.pdf
    Last edited by Alex Madsen; 04-13-2019 at 03:51 PM.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Lumpkin County, GA
    Posts
    916

    Default Re: Think I'm all done

    I don't know the circumstances on your hives so it may be an easy fix. One thing I have found about beekeeping is that it is a constant learning process. If you find out what killed your hive(s) one year, they next year it will be something else. It is a continual challenge and work (time) is required. If you're willing to put in the time and learn from mistakes, it gets easier. You must take each loss personally and learn from each one. In my third year, I told myself "dammit, I am going to get these bugs to live more than a season". If you don't have that attitude in you, you should quit.
    On a personal note, I am starting my 8th season and have swarming issues even though I split the hives in early spring. I already have a plan for next year and can't wait to try it out. I am at 30 hives right now and love the challenge of these little buggers!
    If you choose to continue, listen to local beeks assuming you are in a club. If beekeeping was easy, everybody would be doing it.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    syracuse n.y.
    Posts
    5,402

    Default Re: Think I'm all done

    do you belong to the oswego or syracuse bee clubs? should be plenty of places up there to catch swarms, what did you treat with for mites and when. Every one seems to have lost high numbers of hives to lack of food this year, last years goldenrod flow wasn't very good.
    mike syracuse ny
    Whatever you subsidize you get more of. Ronald Reagan

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
    Location
    East TX
    Posts
    66

    Default Re: Think I'm all done

    Quote Originally Posted by Alex Madsen View Post
    OP. The first step is to determine what killed your bees. 100% mortality of the hives points to a correctable problem.

    https://www.beverlybees.com/how-to-a...ey-bee-colony/

    http://mainebeekeepers.org/wp-conten...opsy-Chart.pdf
    This is good info, thanks. I lost my Italian hive over the winter, it was a new (purchased) nuc last spring. I didn't know what all to look for, but I did not see any mites or beetles. The hive appeared healthy. In still photos I took it appears to be an active, functioning hive, but the bees were all dead. Seemed to me to be an instantaneous kill. My first thought was they were poisoned somehow, but we hadn't had any spraying nearby.

    - djb
    The best things in life aren't things.
    2 hives, started 2018

  8. #7
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    232

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by genusCastor View Post
    I didn't know what all to look for, but I did not see any mites or beetles.

    - djb
    This sentence is the most common thing for new beekeepers to say when they didn't treat at all for mites. If I were you, I would trap a a swarm or two this year and treat them for mites, then see how your overwintering success is.

  9. #8
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    hastings n.y.
    Posts
    33

    Default Re: Think I'm all done

    Thanks for the replys, this is going on my 6th year , the more I learn the less I know! I have reached out to a few local beeks and they are kind of standoffish like I'm stealing their business! I don't sell honey I just want the bee's around, I do catch swarms but still I want them to survive. Mike, I'll see if I can find any info on an Oswego bee club. What gets me is honey bees seem to survive on their own but when mankind tries to help... they perish!

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Lumpkin County, GA
    Posts
    916

    Default Re: Think I'm all done

    Quote Originally Posted by genzer View Post
    What gets me is honey bees seem to survive on their own but when mankind tries to help... they perish!
    That may have been in the 1960's but not now. A statistic I heard somewhere is that the typical feral colony lasts about 18 months before it dies or leaves.

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    NW Florida
    Posts
    1,171

    Default Re: Think I'm all done

    Quote Originally Posted by genzer View Post
    all the stores are gone .
    If all the store were gone, they can starve with a candy board on if they can't get to the candy board for an extended period of time.
    Beek since 2016: Hardiness Zone 9a: in NW Florida

  12. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    syracuse n.y.
    Posts
    5,402

    Default Re: Think I'm all done

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/OswegoCountyBeekeepers/

    that's there FB page, they also have a yahoo group but I can't find it. good luck
    mike syracuse ny
    Whatever you subsidize you get more of. Ronald Reagan

  13. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    53,942

    Default Re: Think I'm all done

    Try "fishing" for local survivors. Set out bait hives.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 42y 40h 39yTF

  14. #13
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    hastings n.y.
    Posts
    33

    Default Re: Think I'm all done

    Thanks Michael, setting out a few today

  15. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    Location
    Smith County, Texas
    Posts
    48

    Default Re: Think I'm all done

    Quote Originally Posted by genzer View Post
    What gets me is honey bees seem to survive on their own but when mankind tries to help... they perish!

    My sis had what appeared to be a VERY active colony in her outbuilding going into winter. I thought about removing it, but thought it was late in the season and I'd get them when spring comes. They were active about 6 weeks ago.... and I went into them about 4 weeks ago. They had starved. I waited too long. They don't always seem to survive on their own.

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