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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So one of my hives didnt make it through the winter (pictures linked below) heres the facts:
The upper box was completely filled with honey
The bottom board was covered in bees
Mold looks common
I found the queen she was dead
No emergency queen cells
A few hive beetles no moths
Some bees looked frozen in place in the brood nest
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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How many frames look like the last one in this group? For geographical reference, are you in Leechburg, PA?
 

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Is all that brown stuff on the bottom board leaked honey, or something worse?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
How many frames look like the last one in this group? For geographical reference, are you in Leechburg, PA?
about half of the frames in the brood box looked like that, if you zoom in theres multiple of those white spheres. The other half of the brood box had honey stored but it was covered in green mold. A few bees were too. Yes I'm in Leechburg PA.
 

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Was there a top entrance? Your bottom entrance was definately blocked with bees.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
welcome to beesource.

is that how you found them on the first look coming out of winter?
It is thought I should note that there was about a 2 week spell in march where it got into the 80s and then dropped down into the teens. Could that have done something?
 

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It is thought I should note that there was about a 2 week spell in march where it got into the 80s and then dropped down into the teens. Could that have done something?
maybe, was there a lot of entrance activity on those warm days?

bushpilot reminded me of a loss i had last winter that looked a lot like that.

my bottom entrance had become clogged with dead bees and the screens i had over the upper vents had become completely closed with propolis.

if it got too cold for the bees to keep the entrance clear and the hive was pretty much air tight with no additional venting then suffocation could have been a factor.
 

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I'm going to say suffocation.
 

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Whaaat., not mites
But, seriously why has no one asked about mite treatments
Mite collapse, in my experience, doesn’t look like a sudden, total collapse.
I suspect starvation. That is just the way a starved hive fails.
 

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we could use more history and a better photo of that brood if it is brood.

what about it doesn't look like a sudden, total collapse dan?

mites were the first thought i had, but after having my share of mite collapses none of them looked like that.

most of those presented with drastically dwindled populations and small clusters stuck on brood, sometimes with spotty capped brood that when removed with a tweezers exhibited signs of disease.
 

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what about it doesn't look like a sudden, total collapse dan?
I probably didn’t express myself very well.
My point was that a mite collapse doesn’t usually result in a sudden failure.
This DOES look sudden. Therefore…in my opinion…not mite driven.
Starvation, on the other hand, looks just like this.
 

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The sticky board says not mites. I dont know what to make of the picture to the right; is is sugar crystals that the liquid has been sucked out of. Did the collapse come before spring brood up started? If afterward there should have been signs of a final cluster around brood that would indicate if they got locked on brood or if it appeared honey was far from the final cluster. More could be known if pictures of more frames just as they were removed. I see no signs of heater bees head first in cells.

There are similarities to what I saw after what I presume to have been suffocation. Bees just appear to have dropped with no signs of a final cluster. No mites in wash of dead bees. No upper or middle entrances. 75% of the stores untouched on double deep colonies that had all been active up until end of Feb. Went into winter with next to zero mites. Totally snow and iced in for approx three days and zero upper entrance. First such trial of this concept.

Msl sent me a link connecting nosema surge after treatments with Oxy Tet. That it predisposes a susceptibility due to changes in gut biota. I had treated in the season previous for the EFB outbreak I had but it had cleared entirely and has seen no return.

There is not a huge amount of info on the web about suffocation.

Edit; I was surprised to see no signs of a cluster. Definitely not starved as colonies had gone into winter at 125 lbs gross or better and still had maybe 75% of stores left. In the opening post here the pictures do show frames with a large area of empty cells. More guesses on what is in the one on the right?
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
we could use more history and a better photo of that brood if it is brood.

what about it doesn't look like a sudden, total collapse dan?

mites were the first thought i had, but after having my share of mite collapses none of them looked like that.

most of those presented with drastically dwindled populations and small clusters stuck on brood, sometimes with spotty capped brood that when removed with a tweezers exhibited signs of disease.
Alright so here are some more photos of frames, 1st 2nd 3rd pics are of the brood nest. 4th pic is of what the honey stores almost all looked like Also if it was starvation wold it be possible to clean off the frames and reuse them?

20200418_135747.jpg 20200418_140128.jpg 20200418_135648.jpg 20200418_134612.jpg
 

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more clues.

photo #3 is a well focused close up of spotty capped brood with perforations in the cappings. take a tweezers and pull some of those pupae out and look for stunted abdomens and deformed or missing wings.

i still can't make out what the white stuff is in photo #1. as frank has suggested, it may be crystalized honey or syrup. try to get a good clear close up of the white stuff like you did in photo #3.

did you treat for mites last fall?
 
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