Beesource Beekeeping Forums banner

1 - 6 of 6 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
131 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Strange behavior it seems to me, but hopefully somebody with more experience can help answer this one... I had one dead-out this year, and looking through the hive, there was a ton of new brood and bees all over the hive, not well clustered. I presume that the weird warm weather we had for a bit earlier tricked the hive to wake up early, and they became productive too soon, right before another cold snap. Too much brood + too few bees to keep them all warm = death?

Besides the point though, I have probably 8 frames full of honey, bee bread, pollen, etc, so I stacked them all up openly near my other hives, and figured they'd all get robbed out nearly instantly like usual. But, after a few days, only a few bees here and there seem interested, and they are pulling in a ton of pollen from foraging. Perhaps they are just more interested in pollen due to the protein content, so they can raise more brood? Seems strange to ignore such a huge cache of food literally 20 feet in front of the door... Is this unusual?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,558 Posts
Honey has to be uncapped by the nurse bees and diluted with water to be used. Someone has to haul the water. If there is some nectar coming in they prefer the nectar. Scratching cappings off sometimes helps bees start to use up honey in frames in hive or move it up to clear cells for queen to lay.
 

·
Registered
5 ,8 ,10 frame, and long Lang
Joined
·
2,547 Posts
Not sure I would stack them next to the bees, Once bees start getting honey and it runs out they may start robbing the weakest hive you have.
If you plan to do any splits use the frames to fill boxes.

If not place the honey under a strong hive, bees do not like honey under the brood nest, they will move it up, into a super of comb if you put one there.
I do enough splits I just use up the comb with stores in the splits.

Sometimes if i put an empty super on a hive then the honey up top they will remove it , need a non comb gap to convince them to go get it. Once flow starts they will build the gap in so timing is critical. could be something else to try.
Good Luck

GG
 

·
Registered
2020 6 hives
Joined
·
242 Posts
Gray Goose has good advice for you. I only let them clean out frames more than 100 feet away from active hives.

Do you know what your mite load was going into the winter? Healthy hives often make it through the winter. Sometimes big hives die out in Feb or March if the weather goes back and forth. Either one of these or both may have been the cause.

I just pulled 8 frames of honey off of my hives when I broke them down to a single deep and added a queen excluder. I got 20 lbs of honey and I was happy as I was down to a couple of crystalized jars left for me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
40 Posts
Also, just freeze them and use in fall and give them to a weak(er) hives. Freezing will prevent pollen from spoiling and honey getting crystallized.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
131 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Do you know what your mite load was going into the winter? Healthy hives often make it through the winter. Sometimes big hives die out in Feb or March if the weather goes back and forth. Either one of these or both may have been the cause.
Thanks for all the helpful info! I was already considering using some of this honey as essentially "frame feeders" for my splits, so that will work well, and I can freeze the rest as well for later. Definitely they will come in handy. I'll keep food further away too, but neither of my hives seem very weak just now fortunately.

As for varroa (thanks for the OAV tool you sold me johno, works great!), I treated with OAV every 3 days for the entire month of October, and then we got a real cold spell early in November, so they were good there. I also treated 3 times earlier this year days it wasn't super cold, so hopefully that helped as well. I did not do an alcohol wash, not no dead mites on the boards afterward, so it seems the mites are quite low. Only after this about 3 weeks did I notice the deadout, so I think they just got a bit ahead of themselves before another cold snap hit.
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
Top