I have my original hive that is slowing down brood production. It never really got to the explosion stage. This hive has 3 mediums 10 frames on and I can note the lower number of bees over the last two weeks. One of my nucs is reaching lauri style numbers on the tops of the frames when opening it and one of my hives had the front entirely bearded over last weekend when I added another medium on it. But this hive has increased, had good laying pattern a while back (6 weeks+), but never had the tops of the frames covered with bees when I open the lid. And after seeing those other two hives, the area between frames is jammed, while I can tell this hive population is not crowded. I have had it since September/October.
I looked really hard yesterday, busted the thing completely apart and looked closely at the bees. Could not see mites! And I have seen them on bees in a feral hive.
Also noted that it seemed to have patchy capped brood, but didn't have time to really start checking frame by frame. It might have been due to bees emerging, just didn't have the time to look at that. (Was trying to see mites on bees instead. :scratch
Probably was wasting my time doing that. So the brood inspection will be this weekend.
Was thinking of doing an alcohol bath tomorrow or this weekend. Might try that powdered sugar trick as well. Do you just brush the bees into a cup and dump it into a jar of alcohol. Do I wanted mainly nurse bees or do it later in the evening so I get foragers as well?
I just hate to kill a cup full.
These are from a feral cut out in a tree so I was hoping they might have some mite resistance.