Dead bees after inspection ?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Location
    Herman,MN
    Posts
    8

    Default Dead bees after inspection ?

    A couple times the next day after an inspection there are dead bees in front of the hive. Maybe a cup full. The other day I pulled the mite strips then added a top feeder. Did not pull any frames.
    Did I over smoke them? Ideas? Thanks.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Lumpkin County, GA
    Posts
    850

    Default Re: Dead bees after inspection ?

    It sounds like typical quantity for a hive. Some hives, the dying bees fly out or the undertaker bees haul the dead away from the hive. Other hives just dump the dead out of the door. Summer bees only live around 45 days so a strong hive is losing hundreds per day.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Grand Rapids MI USA
    Posts
    1,483

    Default Re: Dead bees after inspection ?

    Ya, you’ll notice the change as the weather cools, the dead will just get pulled beyond the entrance when the nights are below 50 or so. I always try to inspect a few to make sure they’re old foragers. Look for worn wings etc.
    Rod

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Location
    Herman,MN
    Posts
    8

    Default Re: Dead bees after inspection ?

    Thanks for the reply's. Maybe smoking them is triggering them to haul the dead bees from the bottom board of the hive. Normally very few dead bees in front of the hive. But after inspection with smoke a bunch of dead bees in front of the hive the next morning. ???

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Lumpkin County, GA
    Posts
    850

    Default Re: Dead bees after inspection ?

    Assuming you are using natural ingredients in your smoker, it will not kill bees. I'm pretty sure it is just a coincidence with the dead bees appearing after an inspection.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Grand Rapids MI USA
    Posts
    1,483

    Default Re: Dead bees after inspection ?

    What are you using in the smoker?
    Rod

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Location
    Herman,MN
    Posts
    8

    Default Re: Dead bees after inspection ?

    This spring I was using blue shop towels and a commercial smoker product from Mann Lake. Quit the shop towels. Lately been using brown paper as a starter and Mann's product.Going to try all natural next time.

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Somerset, NJ
    Posts
    336

    Default Re: Dead bees after inspection ?

    You may be crushing some bees in your inspection that then get hauled out.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Rosebud Missouri
    Posts
    4,012

    Default Re: Dead bees after inspection ?

    I get lots of dead bees when I rob honey if I get robbing interest going.
    Cheers
    gww
    zone 5b

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Location
    Northern Lower Michigan, USA
    Posts
    556

    Default Re: Dead bees after inspection ?

    Quote Originally Posted by kadeal View Post
    This spring I was using blue shop towels and a commercial smoker product from Mann Lake. Quit the shop towels. Lately been using brown paper as a starter and Mann's product.Going to try all natural next time.
    kadeal, not sure what you have around the place but I would not spend money on Smoker fuel. So here is what I have used, Card board, cut in strip as long as the smoker is tall the way so the air flows up thru the center of the card board, roll it up light the bottom. Leaves, straw, ferns, wood shavings from my planner, pine needles, grass from the lawn mower. The better is leaves or grass. did you ever toss a brown cardboard box in the trash? Viola, smoker fuel. do you bag grass or leaves/ smoker fuel. if none of these are options, find a friend or co-worker, or relative with a lawn or some trees, bag some up and try some different things. Ya all natural if good, save the dime for a better queen one day.
    GG

  12. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2019
    Location
    Herman,MN
    Posts
    8

    Default Re: Dead bees after inspection ?

    Thanks Gray Goose.

  13. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Erin, NY /Florence SC
    Posts
    3,597

    Default Re: Dead bees after inspection ?

    BY far the best smoker fuel we find has been pine needles or pine straw as it is called at our Winter yards in South Carolina. It lights easy, burns a long time and gives a cool aromatic Smoke without sparks and fire which agitates bees. It masks alarm odors well and is pleasing for us. In just a few minutes we can gather it under pine trees and we fill a EZ nuc box and keep it handy as we work. Dried staghorn sumac works well too.

  14. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Keene, New Hampshire, USA
    Posts
    205

    Default Re: Dead bees after inspection ?

    I cut up old blue jeans in strips, about 1.5" x 8," and add that to pine needles, pine cones, dried leaves, after starting the smoker with a torn piece of newspaper (always have newspaper in my bee bucket in case I do a combine). I finally have figured out how to keep my smoker going for several hours after years of it going out in the middle of an inspection.

    In the summer, the bees carry their dead further away from the hive to drop them. I think they just push them over the edge when it starts to get cold. They are pulling out drone larvae now and ganging up on the drones, poor guys.

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