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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi there, new on here, love the site! One week ago, our hives were healthy and full of bees. We went to the beach and returned today. No bees, no dead or weak bees left behind, just...nothing. The outside of the hive has a new brown "gloss" or "stain" on three sides. Attaching picture. Can someone help me diagnose? Not really seeing anything in my searches. Thanks, Jon
 

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Re: Absconded give and mysterious stains

Small hive beetles.
You might want to go to your profile and add your location. It may make answers more relevant.
 

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Re: Absconded give and mysterious stains

When you opened the hive ......how did it smell?
Did you see a bunch of larvae on the bottom and combs?
It looks like you have them in a shady location.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Re: Absconded give and mysterious stains

Thanks. No odd smell inside. No larvae of any kind (dead bees or anything else inside). No dead bees in or out. Never seen the brown coating stuff on the outside in the previous 8 years. Doesn't scrape off with my fingernail.
 

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Re: Absconded give and mysterious stains

any honey left in the hive
 

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Re: Absconded give and mysterious stains

Any brood remaining? Eggs, larvae and capped?
 

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Re: Absconded give and mysterious stains

Are you saying that the "dirt" was not there just days ago? Is that a feeder on the top? If so, could the feeder be leaky? Some of the stains look like maybe something sticky ran down the hive and then the wind blew dirt, pollen and pine needles on it, causing them to attach. Evidence of wetness inside? J
 

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Re: Absconded give and mysterious stains

I am not saying it is but it looks like it was lying on its side during a rain storm and the dirt and pine straw has stuck to it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the responses. That's a cinder block on top. It didn't fall over or anything but I agree it sort of looks like that. I'll ask my wife about the honey. The dirt is new in the last 7 days and didn't ever appear in 8 yrs before. No eggs or larvae that I can see...
 

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Healthy and full of bees one week.
Then suddenly broodless?
Methinks we may be onto something here.
 

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That's a cinder block? Why is it directly on the box and not on top of the cover? I don't think that has anything to do with the disappearing bees, just curious. J
 

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How did you determine that the hives were healthy and full of bees?
A healthy bee colony would be loaded with brood in all stages of development this time of year.
I can't think of any way that they would be broodless a week later.
 

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That hive looks to me like it was lying on it's side and Fire Ants built a nest under it and up the side. The ants could have eaten everything in it.
The entire event would take more than a week, though. It's a head scratcher, for sure.

Alex
 

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Fivej's question about the top box being a feeder was never addressed, is it a feeder? Also, if it is a feeder, what do you use as feed? The landing board is in the shadows, but it looks as though the brown has run out of the entrance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Hi there, it's a cinder block on top and not a feeder. Also, the hive was never lying on its side. It's always been just as it shows in the picture for 8 years. I guess I can't swear the hive was "healthy," but last week there were many bees visible in and around it, even from a distance - they seemed to be doing their thing. And now there are none...

Thanks everyone for the suggestions and thoughts so far. Very much appreciated.
 

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How old were these hives?
 

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may have been the bees "seen" were robbing and it was dead for a while, somewhat explains the bees seen and empty now.

when was the last time you were inside the hive and seen brood?

GG
 
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