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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys. Occasionally I'll sit in front of my new hives just to watch them. A few days ago (Thursdasy) I was watching and noticed a slight smell of rotting animal (with none present). I started to worry because I knew that was a sign of AFB. I didn't check on them then because I planned on making and installing SBB's on Saturday as well as my first supper on one of the hives.

So Saturday I got started working the hives and still noticed the smell when I opened the hives, although it was faint. Shortly after, severe clouds and thunder started to move in so I just hurried up with the SBB installs and didn't check the bottom brood chamber, although the top brood chambers looked good and there was a small amount of capped brood up there.

I went back out today and no longer noticed the smell. I opened up the hives and checked the bottom brood chambers to find that there was nothing I deemed abnormal. No black scales. I did the ropy test on a few different areas that were a little darker than others but nothing pulled out.

So what did I smell? Does fermented syrup resemble rotting animal in any way? I have fed (but no longer am) about 25lbs. sugar per hive so I'm sure there is aloy of syrup in there. I'm also sure there is more ventilation now with the SBB's. May be the smell had all vented out over night?

Thanks, John

Ps: I didn't see any dead bees either. Except the ones I got on accident...:doh:
 

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Discussion Starter #4
It really smelled like a dead snake or bird or mouse..... I tried to sick the dog on it to find but he came up with nothing, but still smelled it.

I know someone had mentioned chilled brood in another post. What would the outside temperatures need to be for chilled brood? And what would chilled brood look like? Temperatures have been well above 65 at night and 80's during the day since I have had the hives. They are in the sun from 8:00am to 4:00pm...mostly.

May be I should just try to forget about it until I recheck them again next weekend. I just smelled that smell and freaked.

Thanks, John
 

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John; if your brood looks healthy, nice and white, you probably don't have AFB. AFB brood is a nasty brown mucous looking mess in the cell and stinks like rotted flesh. If you see the brown mess then try the rope test; the mucous will pull out in a long stringy strand. Thankfully, AFB is rare and many beekeepers have never seen a case of it.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I tried the rope test and nothing pulled out with the tooth pick I used.

So I was watching them again tonight and smelled it again. I decided to smell the ground in front of the hive....:eek:. THAT was the smell! I looked closer and there were many dead bees on the ground in front of the hives. They didn't look like any of the mummies I've seen in the books, just dead bees. They were solid black, dried, and dead. Is it normal to have enough dead bees in front of the hive to cause a faint odor?

This will also lead up to my next thread.... Ground cover...:eek:t:

Thanks, John
 
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