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I just set up two new hives about two weeks ago. Been feeding them with both feeders inside and outside of the hives. The issue is, a few of the bees are fighting around the feeders. Nothing major going on around the entrance of ether hive. I opened them both up and there are a few dead bees in each hive but didn't see anything funny. Is the little bit of fight around the feeders anything to worry about?
 

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On new hives i would feed only inside with 1 to 1 syrup only (no honey B healthy ). How close are the hives to each other? could be some drifting going on. With the hives being new the few dead bees are probably old bees. If robbing is going on there would be dead bees on the ground in front of the entrance, alot of fighting at the entrance, and several bees flying in a zigzag motion in front of the hive. I would reduce the entrance where only a couple of bees could enter until things started blooming in your area, then remove the entrance reducer.Of course this is only my opinion.
 

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I agree completely. Reduce the entrance size down first off. Depending on size of package smaller package, smaller entrance. Loose the external feeders. They tend to cause more robbing efforts from other hives, and if you've been using HBH in them stop at this point for at least 3 days. Only use it in the hive top feeders. Bees from all around will come to your door step when using that in an external feeder like the boardman's. If it is enclosed as with a hive top feeder you don't have to worry as much, but if you have robbers from other places they will continue to come till they figure out they can't get in.
 

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I am a new beekeeper with a single hive. A few days ago the hive was swarming (no, not a swarm) with bees, thousands of them, all over. It was about 2:30 in the afternoon, and about 75 degrees. I have a small entrance and have been feeding 1:1 internally with baggies.

It looked kind of like the bees were fighting, but no great mass of dead bees on the ground. Not knowing what I am doing I immediately suspected robbing, so followed the advice here and closed off the entrance to the hive entirely with #8 hardware cloth. The bees then clustered all over the front and sides of the hive, but did not appear to be fighting. In fact, they seemed rather calm.

Back to the forum for more reading.

I ultimately concluded I was seeing orientation flights by new young bees. I went back to the hive and removed the barrier. As the afternoon progressed the bees gradually re-entered the hive and the population in the air dwindled until in the late afternoon it was back to normal. The next morning the bee activity was also back to normal.

Today I am again seeing a large number of bees out of the hive, flying around and around the the hive and stacking up around the entrance.

One question: If new bees fly these orientation flights, and the queen is laying as many as a thousand eggs per day, why is there not a large mass of bees orienting every warm afternoon? I am only seeing them every few days.
 

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I've noticed that depending on the temps and the day, these flights occur roughly between 10:00 am and maybe as late as 3:00 pm. You could be missing them when they happen. They usually only last about 15-20 minutes in my experience...which is limited to be honest. I'm in my second year.
 

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At my place they orient in front of the hives at 2:30pm....as if they had clock. Cold,windy or wet they stay indoors.
Watching the porch gives me an idea as to whether a hive is thriving or not. Perhaps as I gain some experience it will clue me in when they are planning to swarm.
 
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