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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I keep an eye on the what falls through the screen onto the pull out plastic tray "bottom board" hoping to learn what's going on when I can't get into the hive.
I see mites, wax cappings, sometimes a little moth poop. But two things I've wondered about.
Earlier in the fall it was corn. Little bits of corn like from scratch grains or bird feed.
Second was day before yesterday. Eggs.
I think I understand the corn. But can they really eat the corn. I don't understand why they would pull eggs out.
 

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Are you sure? Very small Wax moth larvae can look somewhat like bee eggs.
But . . . We often hear the words, "the queen shuts down", when in fact the queen (an egg-laying "machine") often (not always) produces eggs and those eggs are "removed" (usually eaten) by workers, causing it to appear as if the "queen has stopped". If I were a worker, the upcomming cold weather would be the time when I would choose to "stop" the queen from creating lots of brood for me to care for :)

Maybe your workers are not hungry :) or they "fumble" often :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Checked again today and found more eggs.
As far as the corn, I'm absolutely positive. It's certainly not pollen!

Anyone else want to chime in on why eggs are removed at different times?
Thanks.
 

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Maybe you have some laying workers that are laying several eggs in each cell?

Then I'd think other workers are bound to remove some of those eggs and discard them, since they can't raise more than one egg per cell.
 

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Earlier in the fall it was corn. Little bits of corn like from scratch grains or bird feed.

Chewed up pieces of wax cappings, or tiny bits of old wax, or dried up chunks of old pollen can look very similar to corn fines.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
"As far as the corn, I'm absolutely positive. It's certainly not pollen!"

No SHB in my area. I really think they are discarding eggs, but why?

This hive does have more varroa compared to the three others next to it.
 

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"I've never heard of the bees actually discarding eggs, I thought they'd eat them".--RayMarler.

When I first looked at the debris that falls through a screen onto a sticky board, I used a loupe type magnifying glass to be sure that what I was seeing were mites and not some other reddish brown colored material. Now I can spot them OK. with the naked eye,..and reading glasses. Are you using something like a decent [4X-2X] magnifying glass? Eggs are somewhat smaller than a mite; different shape of course.
 

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Could you possibly post a picture
 

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Well, based on the size of that mite, I would say that the dark things are brood capping wax. If those thin white things are what you are wondering about, they are 10-15x too big for honey bee eggs. They still kind of look like new wax to me.
 

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Well they sure look like bee eggs don't they. A little hard to tell the size [or compare], beedeeT; at least for me they look about right. Some of them have that slight "curve" also.

It looks like a laying worker, or workers, laying eggs willy-nilly and they are dropping through the screen. Some eggs seem to be attached to each other. I confess to never having checked the debris from a laying worker hive. It didn't happen very often; once in 4 years maybe. Is it because of a new queen recently mated in late summer/early fall and is eager to lay, but it's late in the year? From readings, it's hard to believe workers pull out eggs and just drop them. Strange.

If you really believe you see corn particles, it may be from bird feeders or from the corn harvest at this time of year,.:scratch:. That's enough guessing for me, :).
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I'm starting to lean toward laying worker I guess. Will see if any bees are left by spring. I'm a bit surprised no one else has seen eggs removed like this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Just wanted to conclude this thread. A few weeks ago we had a day in the 60's. I got into the hive. There was maybe a frame or two of bees and a queen. A little queen. No brood or eggs. A week later fewer bees and no queen. There was plenty of honey but no pollen. They had sugar via mountain camp and a patty that had never been touched since fall application. My assumption is it was a virgin queen from late fall.
 

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Bees will absolutely get into corn. I have chickens/ducks/turkeys and in fall they get into the cracked corn in large numbers.

I have even found them in the feed bins if left open while feeding.


Have read and been told they will corn dust as a pollen substitute.
 
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