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Author Topic: sticky bees  (Read 2521 times)
briguy
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« on: June 29, 2004, 09:03:27 PM »

We are new to beekeeping, one of our hives which was a swarm collected and productive since early May seems to have sticky pink stuff on the entrance board and the bees are sticking together as they go in and out of the hive.  This started happening around two weeks ago about the same time the star thistle started to bloom, does not seem to be happening in our other two hives in a different location on our property.  Should we be concerned or is this "normal".  Thanks.
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Robo
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« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2004, 09:09:58 PM »

I have never seen or heard of such a thing. Seems odd to me, especially if your not seeing it with your other hives.  Unless they are miles about, I would suspect they are all working the same plants to some extent.
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Anonymous
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« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2004, 11:02:05 PM »

Actually upon closer look the same thing is happening in the other hives, (we are on 20 acres rural area).  The other thing that has happen recently is a commercial outfit has moved in about 15-20 hives about a quarter of a mile away probably about the same time this started happening.
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Finman
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« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2004, 11:25:20 PM »

Quote from: briguy
the bees are sticking together as they go in and out of the hive.  

This started happening around two weeks ago about the same time the star thistle started to bloom, does not seem to be happening in our other two hives in a different location on our property.  Should we be concerned or is this "normal".  Thanks.


I do not understand what means "sticking together"?

If hive is too cramped bees do not fit any more to the hive. You must put more space for them.  If you have much ventilating bees, you must widden your entrance.

Look inside, what is happening there? Do they have space for honey and brood?
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golfpsycho
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« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2004, 01:27:41 AM »

Well.. they're getting into something.. who knows what?  I would take a stroll over to the commercial yard and take a peek.  Are their bees coming home the same way?  If so... are they feeding anything?  Like a barrel with colored syrup and not enough straw to keep the bees afloat?  Obviously, this isn't coming from star thistle.  If not coming from their yard, I would start investigating a little further.  Are they loaded with pollen when they get back? Are there cultivated crops nearby?    Could this be some form of pesticide or fertilizer that has been applied?  Some seed treatment in the planters?  Thats a stretch I know, but got to start somewhere.  I'd definitely be taking a look around
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briguy
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« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2004, 11:21:14 AM »

By sticking together I mean that the sticky stuff is binding the bees, they are able after a struggle to get apart.  The only cultivation is watering pastures for grazing mostly grass but some alfalfa in 2 mile radius of ourt home.   We have not been feeding anything for about a month.  I will take a walk over to the commerical hives to see what is happening.  

All these hives have been strong, we just added a third super and we are anxious.  Should we open them up to make sure everything is ok or just be patient?
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Beth Kirkley
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« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2004, 01:22:11 PM »

I'd say yes, open that hive up and look. I'm that way, I want to know how far this has gone - is it inside the hive?

Personally I'm baffled as to what this stuff is. When you say "pink & sticky", I'm thinking - like mild bubble gum? We definatly want to know how this turns out for you.

Beth
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Anonymous
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« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2004, 09:08:33 PM »

Follou up:  the pink sticky stuff is more like bright pink honey.   After taking a good look at what was blooming we found oodles of purple russian thistle in addition to another purple weed that is yet to be identified.  Also, yesterday they seemed to be working real hard at getting the drops cleaned up on the entrance board, and they were working like crazy in and out of the hive.  There are still a few bees sticking together but all else seems fine, we will go into the hives this weekend just to be sure.  Our current hypothesis is that we are in a period of heavy nectar flow and the color is related to what is blooming.  If this sounds off base please comments.   Thanks for all the input, eases anxiety greatly.
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fruitynewt
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« Reply #8 on: June 20, 2006, 01:00:01 AM »

Two years on I'd have loved to know what the answer was to this one. My theory is that someone is putting coloured sugar water out for humming birds and the bees were getting into that!

rick.
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Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2006, 06:32:55 AM »

Yeah humming bird feeders without the bee screens sounds like a good bet.  You might have some new neighbors who like feeding the little critters.
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