Yes, the summer was very bad here in Texas,First we had a month and a half of 105 degree weather and then rain for a month and a half,then an early winter. We have inside feeders on our hives with dry sugar. They had alot of store but they were bringing in the pollen untill the freeze. I hope they have pollen for the brood all winter. Maybe I should buy some pollen. We don't combine hives,we cut back the brood boxes and feed them.part of the reason we have lost bees, is because we have gone in the hives to soon, and they got chilled. Some of the other reasons for last years losses stemmed from improper nutrition due to very inclement weather all spring and summer, and then going into a brutal and long winter.
If i had to do it all over again, hey i guess i did...i put out more pollen in the hives in the fall to give the bees an extra boost. I was also more tough on what hives went into winter and what was not strong enough so i combined. HOpe to see some of the hard choices pay off
Yes,weak hives will do it, you must combine for the winter then. Don't your bees swarm ? If you don't re-queen,you need to let them swarm. I know some people have good luck at stoping swarms,do you ?I can't really tell you have many hives I have lost because I don't keep count. I would say that on average I lose 2 to 3 per yard per year. The reasons...I would say more often then not it is from old or poor queens. The same with losing hives over winter. In most cases it is because the hive didn't have enough bees to make it through the winter, again due to an old or poor queen. I don't have a mite problem (spring and fall EO treatments have worked excellent) and the last year I had two hives with foul brood that immediately went into the fire.
Wow,I'm so sad to hear that.How many hives did you have ? Do you count losing a queen as losing a hive ? We try to keep alot of drones around so the queens get matted real good. We have tried so far not to treat for anything but I know we must keep mites under control by doing mite counts and treat them. We are trying to buy good queens that are resistant to everything and then see how they do and raise our own queens and maybe sell some.How many hives did you lose in the last two years ?150+ last year and 250+ this year. It's hard to get an exact count because of the constant replacing of queens, making splits, etc.
How did you lose them,what happened ? Some swarm and never get a mated queen. Some had high mite loads as did the ones that survived after treatment. Some had high nosema counts. Bear got some. Most I never figured out and if I did maybe I could come out of the red.
What breed of bees do you have ? Mainly Italian and Carniolan but there is a mix of just about everything in the operation considering where the queens come from and they are open mated.
No, I have never had a hive swarm. Maybe I misspoke. I do re-queen but don't do a fall re-queening. Yes, if I can catch them in time I will combine, but usually I am concentrating on getting the everything else ready for Calf. and winter then trying to save a few hives.Yes,weak hives will do it, you must combine for the winter then. Don't your bees swarm ? If you don't re-queen,you need to let them swarm. I know some people have good luck at stoping swarms,do you ?