Just did my first inspection (day 9) on one of my hives. Everything looked good(no cross comb). I saw the queen and some larvae. I was curious. Is this an excessive amount of dead bees in the bottom of the hive? The very bottom is 8 inches across. and 14.5 inches deep. They have only taken the comb to the bottom of the frame which is 6.5 inches from the topbar. I expect them to extend further down within the next two weeks.
When a colony has just been dumped-in from a package, a lot of the bees from that package will die-off as time marches on. They will be disposed of. In about 30 days the natural life-cycle begins to take hold, producing new brood every day. Old bees will continue to die on-schedule but there will be much less of a sense of "lots of dead bees" going forward, unless something has gone truly-wrong. Reserve judgment on this until the hive is running firmly on its own production of brood.
And, do notice, the population counts of the hive will fairly-quickly seem to explode when the brood does start coming in. Be prepared to give them room to grow.
These are half frames. Since my top bar is just shy of 24 inches across and runs 14.5 inches deep, I made a half frame to help prevent comb collapse in the summer. The inside volume of the hive is about 124 liters. I wanted to see if the bees would like a hive that minimizes surface area for the volume.
This photo is from today's hive inspection that I performed on the other hive. I am switching back and forth on inspections so I can see more stages of development without disturbing the bees too much.
Interesting, so in the pic in the originally post we just happen to be seeing the bottom of the frames.
Also, that's not squat for dead bees. Look around on the ground about 2-6 feet in front of the hive.
The wind is so bad around here that the carcasses don't stay in place for more than 5 minutes. When the wind does die down I have seen workers carry off their dead about 15 feet away. If the wind gets down to 5 mph it is good enough to inspect. I'm just glad that the bees don't know that I am the one responsible for bring them to this awful part of the country.
Yes, the little bars were the bottom of the frames. They are about 6.5 inches below the top bar.
just curious if it's a top entrance or bottom entrance TBH. My bottom entrance hive gets cleaned out of dean bees quite regularly. However, in my top entrance TBH, the mortuary bees tend to tuck the dead carcasses anywhere they can find a spot, like behind the follower board (although both entrances have follower boards). Just one of the fascinating things about having observation windows in all of my different hives.
The entrance is located halfway up just under the bottom of the frame. It is a 9" long quarter-inch slit with a robbing screen built over it.
I procrastinated too long last winter to make an observation window for either one of my hives. After I finish putting on my metal roof I will build a couple of hives with an observation window. I already have the glass. I am also in desperate need of some nuc boxes as well.
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