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Discussion Starter #1
Went to a friends place and was using a twig to clear the bottom entrance, got a full sandwich bag of dead bees but also lots os little flakes, look like wood and wax. This hive has a mouse guard but I'm wondering if a mouse could have gotten in prior to putting on the mouse guard or could it be something else. Question is what can be done, is it possible to coax a mouse out to a trap with some peanut butter? Should we move the hive to a warm (45-50 degree) garage? What should we do? I didn't have a camera so no pics.

Thw hive next to it, which we weaker in the fall had no flakes, and very few dead bees.

Thanks as always
 

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Sounds like wax cappings that have been chewed away from the honey stores. The bees will remove the cappings as they need honey. If a mouse was trapped inside the hive for a long time, it would not have survived without water etc. I use a coat hanger with the hook still on to rake debris from the bottom board. This way you should have gotten some nesting materials if a mouse was inside.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I forgot to mention I got a few chewed and rolled up leaves, I had a short stick and couldnt reach to the back.
 

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OK, that is different! Maybe there is a mouse in there. I had one a couple of years ago that got shut up inside when I put on the mouse guards. A couple of weeks later, I saw some debris in the wire guard, removed it and raked out a dead mouse and the nesting materials along with some wood that had been chewed off my slatted rack. The mouse had tried to chew its way out but died inside.
 

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The trick is to get your mouse guards on as soon as the honey is off so it is before the fall nesting season. Once the bees start to cluster and the frames aren't fully occupied it's all over but the nesting and chewing. I see too many beeks (me some years) don't get their hives closed up for winter and fall (should be late summer) treatments done early enough.
 

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The mouse isn't guaranteed life if it takes up a hive for its home. It can still die of cold or starvation or disease or old age. A hive is simply shelter. Pick a warmish day, peek into the hive where you can and clean up as best you are able. Don't risk breaking down the hive just to see what's there.
 
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