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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been bee keeping since 2015 and have had lost my first hive two years after I started my second hive in 2017. This spring (here in Florida that is end of February) I had two healthy hives on was three years old and the other was one year old. The one year old was a new queen (russian) and bees from the other hive.
I did a split of the one year hive and all was well.
In end of April I got two new queens and I toke one brod box from the old hive and created two new hives. Here i made a big mistake, I forgot to cover the top with a screen I just put the top on. After two weeks I noticed bees going in through the top and a lot of fighting by the entrance I closed the top and the entrance, but it was to late a week after the hive was dead with a lot of dead bees in the bottom screen. I now have four hives.
Three weeks ago I noticed that there was no activity in my one year old hive and I open it to find it empty, afraid that Wax moth would take over I added the Brod box to my oldest hive and the supper to one of the young hive. I now have three hives.
Two weeks after (one week ago) I find the hive I split in February and the new hive where I added the Super, booth empty and today I found my oldest hive empty.
For a month ago I did noticed that I had a lot of bees 15-20 crawling on my pavement around 30 feet from the hives.
The last three hives that is empty I haven't open them yet, I did close the entrance with duktape.
What would I look for and can I reuse the hives?
Thanks for any help
Kim
 

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Kimhj, from what you posted I can think of a few possibilities. You didn't mention your treatment plan so I suspect the first possibility was varroa. Robbing may have been the loss of your new splits. You also mentioned bees crawling on the ground which may be from viruses transmitted from varroa. Do you have other beekeepers near you? If so it makes it hard to keep the varroa from drifting into your hives. The last thing I can think of is nasty neighbors spraying raid on your hives.

You can certainly reuse the wooden ware. You may want to err on the side of caution and replace the foundation. If you flame the insides of the wooden ware you will be safe. Or you can use bleach/water and spray them if you don't want to flame them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I have inspected for Varroa, but never had any. It will also be hard to treat at this time a year where the temperature is 80 at night and in the 90 in daytime. There is no other beekeepers around.
I will clean the boxes with my touch
Thanks
 

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I have inspected for Varroa, but never had any. It will also be hard to treat at this time a year where the temperature is 80 at night and in the 90 in daytime. There is no other beekeepers around.
I will clean the boxes with my touch
Thanks
What was your 'inspection' method?

You can still treat...using something other than formic acid.
 

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Pictures of your hives might help.

Is it possible that the hives were too air tight? Too much C02 and the hives may have absconded. The crawling bees raises the issue of pesticide poisoning. How did you check for varroa? They are almost always present. Robbing and drones and drifting will spread them between hives.

The fighting? I have heard that some breeds, like Carniolan, are more prone to robbing......

Not enough information. You might consider contacting your local bee club and asking for someone to come out and investigate.
 

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I have inspected for Varroa, but never had any.
First....your hives have mites.
Second.....you've had bees...on and off.... since 2015? What sort of mite management have you done?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I have done the powder sugar test every three months never finding more than 20 mites. I inspected the hives this weekend and found that the one hive that I thought was the last my have been the first since it was complete filled with wax moth lava and all honey frames was torn open. So the activity I have seen the last week was robbing. I have screen bottom with sticky board in all hives and I didn't see any unusual amount of mites on them. There was no dead bees in bottom screen in any of the hives. The only thing I can think of is that the neighbor had a new septic drain dug by a caterpillar for two weeks ago around 30 feet from my hives. My hives are 5 feet from the fence.
 

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I have inspected for Varroa, but never had any.
Thanks
I have done the powder sugar test every three months never finding more than 20 mites. I have screen bottom with sticky board in all hives and I didn't see any unusual amount of mites on them.
I am confused.

Alex
 

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20 mites is a significant problem on typical sample of 300 bees!

Assuming mites or mite-borne pathogens was the problem (likely), I would reuse the equipment.
 
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