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Hi there,

Did my spring checkout on Sat. here in coastal CT. Noticed in my bottom box that some of the bridge comb on top of my bars on the bottom box was very brown in color and had a whiteish coating. Did not look like mildew or any other type of growing living mold, more like the white coating on blueberries.

Is the brown comb in the bottom box normal? What about this whiteish coating?

Wish I had brought my camera out to the hive but I didn't. These are Italian bees and the hive seems to be in GREAT shape in terms of #'s of bees, brood etc...
 

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Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
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Re: Brown Comb with a whiteish coating?

The white coating on blueberries is yeast. Candida to be exact. The white coating on your comb is likely the same thing--yeast. The brown is just the color of old wax, especially comb that has had brood in it. Cocoons turn the wax brown. By next year it will probably be almost black.
 

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Re: Brown Comb with a whiteish coating?

Could also be beeswax bloom. According to ABC and XYZ though, it is usually seen on candles, foundation, and wax blocks (see pg 109 of edition 41 for pics). "...where it looks similar to mold but it is not mold. Bloom melts at about 102 F, much lower than the melting point of beeswax itself, about 143 F."

If it has been cold all winter it is possible that some of this precipitate has formed on the wax. Again, as w/ the yeast hypothesis, harmless--just a separation of some of the wax constituents.
 
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