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Bee poop question

2538 Views 10 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Slow Drone
Lost my 3rd and final hive to winter. There are a few left inside the honeycomb. About 30-40 pounds honey left inside.
My question is, there is some runny mess outside of the top entrance. Is this normal considering the worst winter in decades?
The remaining few looked fine and no brood started. Assuming queen dead and not enough bees to get another.
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firstly I'm no expert, and did not stay at a Holiday in last night, but in my waiting for packages and equipment i read a few books and the forum, it sounds like it may be dysentery/nosema, this link may help

but please do not take my word for it, I'm sure a more knowledgeable person will chime in, I've learned that book knowledge is great, but it all goes out the window when even though you know better, you decide to put your package in mid day without a veil (I think i still owe the swear jar a few dollars for that one) :)
With Nosema Apis there are feces on the top bar of your frames,fecal streaking on the outside of the hive,bees crawling on the ground in front of hive unable to fly,wings unhinged appearing to resemble the letter k.They wil also continually supercede to no avail.Sometimes they abscond or appear to swarm.Different poisonings can also give the same appearance.Nosema can only be confirmed by testing via microscope at 400x.You can examine the midgut visually but microscopic comfirmation is most reliable.Nosema Ceranae is totally different doesn't give visual clues ,again microscopic examination is necessary.:lookout:
Since this is a thread on bee poop I have a question.
Is it normal for when the bees really start bringing in pollen to have
their poop change slightly?
I ask because we are starting into the willow catkin bloom here and
the girls are bringing in gobs of pollen. Coincidentally I notice not the normal
little splat poops but now some long (1") stringy poops on the hive cover.
Yes it can change but solid or stringy feces are another visual clue to suspect poisoning or Nosema Apis.Only confirmable by microscopic examination.Sometimes the pollen just doesn,t agree with them.Is it on your top bars or the face of their comb.If so could be suspect. Nosema Apis isn't something I don't worry about.They can develop a tolerance to it.It's one of those thing quite often the treatment is worse than the effects.You can only mask the symptoms with treatment not cure it.Nosema is a fungis not a virus or bacteria or bug of any sort.Treatment with Tea Tree oil is the least injurious prophylactic for the bees,brood,and comb.When properly applied the affect on the queen and brood is nil to none.Word of caution Nosema is highly contagious and can easily be spread by both the bees and beekeeper.
After some research and a 2nd look, it doesn't appear or sound like Nosema.

The yellow watery stuff is not apparent and no bees on ground. All are in the honeycomb and look, act normal as I can tell.

Might be just the long winter without break. Made the mistake of not protecting from cold/wind. This coming winter, I'll be making Bee TeePee's with top exits. Will give pictures when time comes...
To know for sure send samples for testing, its free.

They can test for nosema and allot of other things.
I would also send in some comb so they can check for brood diseases.
Says, they don't determine species of nosema. Am thinking it's the long winter without a break.
With Nosema the feces are stringy not watery.Watery feces would be normal with a lack of suitable weather for cleansing flights.More than likely not Nosema if it's watery.The feces will be stringy because it is solid instead of watery.As Flower Planter advises testing is free.:thumbsup:Research Nosema Apis and Nosema Ceranae.
Feces not watery. Mostly blobs under top entrance, nothing stringy. We had a miserable below zero winter and still persists this week. Want to use the 30-40 pounds of honey in hive for new bees coming in today.
Will it b ok to put the new ones in with the 100 or so remaining bees?
They are MN hygienic, new ones. Old ones r Russians.
With Nosema the bees behavior will be less tendency to sting,and repetitive attempts to supercede.You haven't mention any supercedure issues.I would say you're good to go.I'd shake the remaining bees of if three's not enough to sustain on their own,clean or disinfect your equipment to give the hygienics a good start.Some would say to do a newspaper combine but I wouldn't tell someone to do what I wouldn't.That will help eliminate any issues the old bees might have with the new queen.Sometimes or I should say Russian aren't very accepting of a foreign queen and may ball her.That's why I wouldn't risk a combine.Even intro of a Russian queen into a Russian colony the intro is a longer period (best to not uncork for 3 days for the best acceptance).If you had a spare queen might be able to start an OB.A pint to a quart of bees might work.I don't like shaking them out but that's what I do so as not to jeprodize the new queen and colony.I'm not telling you my way is the only way just that's what I do.My results have aways been very successful doing it this way.If there's a safer most secure method I'd like someone to shed some light on it.Shaking bees off like that has always bothered me never have gotten use to it.The consulation is I don't have to worry about the new queen and bees.Good luck and keep researching.Research is a good thing:applause:
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