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Author Topic: Ok, Now I am worried. Lost two hives today!!!  (Read 864 times)
Frantz
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« on: December 11, 2007, 09:54:59 PM »

Thanks all for helping me out lately.  As I have said I got 12 hives about a month ago, it really was to early for me to get bees but a guy I know bought the land and knew that I wanted some... So I got them. They looked pretty rough so I am assuming they were abandoned sort of. Anyway when I moved them I smoked em, and craked some open to see the conditions. Most I looked at looked pretty busy and I even took one frame of honey off of one to take home to the kids and the wife to get them excited. Well two of the hives were totally dead today when I went to the ranch. I noticed that 10 0f the hives had melted the snow off of the tops, and 2 of them hadn't?? So I gave them a thump and nothing.. I thumped the others and got the big buzz, so I figured that something must be wrong... Well I went ahead and cracked the first one and about 10K bees all dead clustered together. Starved. I looked through the frames and there was not one frame with anything in it?? I had 2 deeps full of empty comb. What in the world is that?? So both hives that had full bees and had been on my ranch at least a month and not one cell full of honey or anything else, no brood or anything.. When I took the hives to the ranch, I opened up at least half of them, they looked ok, the frames I pulled were 3/4 drawn and had honey so I thought I was fine. I only pulled one frame on about 5 or 6 boxes just to get a feel for what they looked like. I was using an old paint can that I rigged for a smoker and had my very brave 13 yr old daughter helping me. Again I am still so new to this I am learning as I go, but should I worry about the remaining 10? Is there anything that I can do anyway? Why would there be 20 empty frames? In both hives?? There is a little bit of what looks like old crusty honey in a couple of cells but only 50 or so cells per frame I just don't know what I am looking at. But nothing at all in the frames???  I am looking forward to hearing your opinions....I will get some pictures and try to post them for a visual.. There is no way I can crack the other hives to check right? It is just too cold. 20-30 degrees here for a high this week. I just don't want to lose all these bees, much less have there be something that I could've done.. Anyway thanks in advance for the ideas. 
Frantz
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JP
The Swarm King
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« Reply #1 on: December 11, 2007, 11:23:29 PM »

Do a search on this site on emergency feeding. It sounds like your two hives ate their stores. You can crack the hives to emergency feed. If they don't have stores they will starve as well, you could try lifting them to check the weight, if they are light, you will need to feed.

Sincerely, JP
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2007, 07:56:53 AM »

Mine had no honey going into winter either and I harvested none.  It was a very strange year nectar wise.  The spring plants got killed by the late freeze and it also seemed to affect the fall flowers which had no nectar.  You always need to check on them in the fall.  It's possible the others are light.  Try lifting the hives and see how heavy they are.  If you can lift them, they are light.  Here's a way to get some emergency food on them:

http://www.bushfarms.com/beesfeeding.htm#drysugar
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Michael Bush
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pdmattox
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« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2007, 09:37:22 AM »

Sounds like low food stores to me also and I  would like to add that if you don't have entrance reducers on then put them on now. I lost several to robbing because of no reducers.
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Frantz
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« Reply #4 on: December 12, 2007, 09:44:47 AM »

Ok, so the reason that I had 20 empty frames of comb could just be that they ate it already.. I guess that makes sense. If they starved I guess there would not be any honey stores. As I said I am new. I will check the others for weight. Ok, I will go through the emergency feeding stuff and get on it.
Thanks all.
F
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Don't be yourself, "Be the man you would want your daughters to marry!!"
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