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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is my first year keeping bees and I was only able to start with one hive. If seemed to have been fending well. Had honey stores going into winter. Well, yesterday I discovered a completely empty hive. The only thing that remained was about 5 or 10 dead bees. The comb was completely clean except one frame that had a very small number of larva and some capped drone brood. I don't imagine the larva or capped brood is even alive due to no nurse bees. Any ideas what happened or what I did wrong. Oh, and the comb that contained the honey appears to have been chewed by the bees if that helps with a prognosis.
 

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In my discussions with long time beekeepers if there are no bees in the hive CCD. If you have a cluster of dead bees starvation. Look for dead bees with their butts out starvation. Empty frames and no bees CCD. Hope this helps.
 

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Capped drone brood with that small of a cluster likely a laying worker or failing queen. Look at the capped cells and see if they are perforated where the Varroa mites have emerged.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the responses. The hive had been knocked over by a goat about 6 weeks ago. The queen may have been damaged and it was too late to recover. Just baffled me that I didnt see a dead cluster in the hive or anything remaining in the comb. It was a very, very small number of drone comb and absolutely no honey or pollen stores remained. But there were stores a month ago and I fed sugar syrup. As a noob, its hard for me to tell if their stores were enough. And maybe by feeding, I encouraged robbing. The comb appeared cleaned out. Makes me wonder if they absconded due to weather, robbing, starvation, or something else. Don't know if they cleaned out the comb or if it was robbed out before or after they vanished.
 
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