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I checked my bees today and when I came beside one of my hives i noticed a sour like smell. Does anyone have any ideas as to what it might be ?
 

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Thanks !!
After i posted i did a search and found out the same thing. Another lesson learned.
 

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bartrak, I'm just two hours up the road from you, and we've got the same. We had a great goldenrod bloom this year and the asters are stilling going strong. In the early morning, when the air is still, you can really smell it standing near the hives.

Richard
 

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This is my first year of beekeeping and I'm glad I ran across some posts about the sour smell from aster/goldenrod before I actually smelled it this weekend in both my hives, otherwise I would have been very concerned. It does smell like old socks. :)
 

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I haven't tasted it myself, but was in one of my hives yesterday doing last inspection and installing mouse guard before winter, and was a cross between smelly sock with a touch of a buttery smell hehe!
 

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Friends, you may have missed the point. ;)

I can smell hive beetles when they have set up shop in a hive. And they make a sour, vaguely orange-y smell. If you smell/see/hear/taste/feel something off when you open a hive, investigate.

Good job being alert enough to sense changes in your hive.

Summer
 

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Boy howdy am I glad I knew where to go to get this answer. Was out wondering when I should start to wind things down with the hives. The goldenrod is still strong down here thanks to the little bit of rain we've had.
Can't miss that smell. Guess I'll give them another week or two. 8 degrees right now and their busy.
 

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This is my first time on Bee Source... yes Golden Rod honey is smelly at first but just be patient for the smell to go away, later the flavor comes out. You want to harvest that Golden Rod honey. It will be one of the best tasting honies you've ever tatsted, slight butterscotch taste. If you sell honey, you will develope a customer base that only wants the Golden Rod. You can generally sell it for a little more since it is more seasonal and less of it harvested. Enjoy!
 

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Might pull a couple of frames for funsies. This is a first year hive that swarmed and then requeened themselves back at the end of August. Don't know what the winter's going to bring but a packed to the hilt deep and 2 mediums should
give them enough to thrive til spring. Which around here is March.(With any kind of luck.)
 

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This strange odor in the bee yard that happens in the Fall has been the source of much speculation over the years. It is very subjective and the odor doesn't smell the same to everyone. To some it smells like old sour gym socks and to others it smells like melted butter or buttery popcorn. I guess it all depends on your nose. Some say it's Golden Rod and some think it's Asters. I wish someone would do a study on it. The resulting honey is usually pretty dark and to me it tastes really good. So the speculation continues.
 
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