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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just happened to glance out the garage window at the apiary and saw bees flying all around the back and sides of the hives. Usually they just head straight out and back again. They are also clustering around the seams between the boxes seemingly trying to get in. More on one hive in particular but on others as well. The hive most of them seem to be on should have and emerging (or recently emerged) queen if that means anything... There doesn't appear to be any robbing signs at the entrances.
I'm hesitant to do my inspection with this happening.
What could be going on?
 

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Do you have a feeder on the hive? If so, they can sense that source, and want it!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yup. Though there are feeders on all of the hives. I'm wondering if it's because they are a small colony (rearing a queen). I guess once robbing starts they become interested in all the hives which explains the activity on the other stronger hives as well.
 

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I did some external feeding, resulting in some robbing behavior from some very dark bees probably some local feral bees. I closed down the entrances removed the external feeder.

The next day I had the same behavior you mention. Bees working around the edges of the hive. The hive had a bucket feeder inside a deep closed off so that only the bees inside the hive had access through the top board. I gave it another day noting the same activity.

The following morning I took out the feeder and the activity ceased that day. After a few days of no feed I returned the internal bucket feeder with no external activity.

Lesson learned from external feeding..... the hard way
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I have top feeders (internal). I'm not sure what set it off but I'm hoping that we're not experiencing a dearth! Seems early but what do I know? This is all new to me.
 
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