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Author Topic: Death  (Read 4537 times)
Sean Kelly
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« on: June 12, 2008, 06:48:54 PM »

My bees died.  3 of my 5 hives are completely gone.  I'm not sure whether to blame it on my neighbors sneaking over with a can of raid or this long, cold and wet weather we've been having.  They were fine two days ago and today they're gone.  In the pile there's still a few bees crawling around slowly but nothing I'm going to be able to save.  I took pictures and a video.  As soon as I get them uploaded to my computer I'll post em here.

My question now moving forward is how do I get all those half emerged bees, larve, and everything else out of those combs to get ready for next year?
And what about the moldy combs?  Just toss them?

These hives were extremely lethargic several days ago, moving very slowly.  Could it be Nosema?  CCD?  Evil Neighbor?  I did the rope test for AFB and it looks negative.  I'm lost.  Help?

Sean Kelly

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Tucker1
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« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2008, 07:07:43 PM »

Sean:  I'm sorry about your loss. You put a lot of time into your girls and I can't imagine the disappointment you must of felt finding them like that.  I hope everything works out fine for the other hives.  I'm sure some of the expereinced beekeepers can give you some help. Sorry.   embarassed

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BeeHopper
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« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2008, 07:39:54 PM »

My bees died.  3 of my 5 hives are completely gone.  I'm not sure whether to blame it on my neighbors sneaking over with a can of raid or this long, cold and wet weather we've been having.  They were fine two days ago and today they're gone.  In the pile there's still a few bees crawling around slowly but nothing I'm going to be able to save.  I took pictures and a video.  As soon as I get them uploaded to my computer I'll post em here.

My question now moving forward is how do I get all those half emerged bees, larve, and everything else out of those combs to get ready for next year?
And what about the moldy combs?  Just toss them?

These hives were extremely lethargic several days ago, moving very slowly.  Could it be Nosema?  CCD?  Evil Neighbor?  I did the rope test for AFB and it looks negative.  I'm lost.  Help?

Sean Kelly



Sean,

So sorry for the loss, these things happen to the best of us. Please contact your extension agent, collect samples of dead bees from the hives and freeze them till you know where to send them for analysis, I think it's best to know what had happened.

BeeHopper
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bassman1977
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« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2008, 07:43:42 PM »

That sucks.  Sorry to hear that.

Quote
I think it's best to know what had happened.

I second that.

Quote
My question now moving forward is how do I get all those half emerged bees, larve, and everything else out of those combs to get ready for next year?

You can freeze them and next year's bees will clean them all out.

Quote
And what about the moldy combs?  Just toss them?

No.  The bees can clean those up too.  You still have hives.  Give them everything to clean up now.
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Ross
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« Reply #4 on: June 12, 2008, 09:05:54 PM »

Did they have enough stores or did they starve?  Is the inside of the hive wet, need more ventilation?  Have you looked for mites? 
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« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2008, 12:40:48 AM »

Sean, I'm so sorry. Cry  The same thing happened to mine, I ALMOST lost the hives. It was so wet & cold for so long some starved, then the dead ones piled up on the bottom & the live ones couldn't get out to forage so they starved..more dead piles. Brian had devestating losses, Cindi almost did. Kathy maybe?? I thought that mine had been poisioned too @ first so go in & see if they have any stores.  It's the weather & delayed blooming of things.  I quit feeding before Memorial day & didn't check em till last week.  They had so much brood & were using food as it came in so didn't have extra. Now I'm feeding & they're eating, coming & going & tomorrow will check to see if there are any eggs, brood etc..if not I may have to order queens.  They are still bringing out the dead though, that's interesting to watch cause of equal size, how can they fly with them?Huh   Let me know if I can help you in any way.  Know you are busy w the new one coming in a couple of weeks!  We WILL require pictures!!! grin
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« Reply #6 on: June 13, 2008, 12:55:58 AM »

G'day Sean,
                 When you say moldy do you mean blue -green type of mould ?
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Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #7 on: June 13, 2008, 02:03:26 AM »

My bees died.  3 of my 5 hives are completely gone.  I'm not sure whether to blame it on my neighbors sneaking over with a can of raid or this long, cold and wet weather we've been having.  They were fine two days ago and today they're gone.  In the pile there's still a few bees crawling around slowly but nothing I'm going to be able to save.  I took pictures and a video.  As soon as I get them uploaded to my computer I'll post em here.

If you'd read some of my recent postings you'd know what happened.  The weather around here as been so bad that I, too, lost 3 of 5 hives due to starvation.  The bees just couldn't get out to forage sufficiently to maintain the hive.  A lot of resources had been put into developing brood when the bad weather hit so the stores were depleated anyway.  Usually it is not a problem because the bees usually have warm enough weather to forage--not this year.  My bees turned to eating the eggs, then the larvae, and had turned to opening up capped pupae to cannabalize in order to survive.  I was able to save the 2 strongest hives by starting to feed.  I had a few bees left in the 3rd strongest hive but no queen, so I combined 2 & 3.  I'm still feeding because the weather hasn't changed that much yet, although we had temps in the low 60s and partly sunny today.  But 1 day isn't enough, we need a couple of weeks to recover.

Quote
My question now moving forward is how do I get all those half emerged bees, larve, and everything else out of those combs to get ready for next year?
And what about the moldy combs?  Just toss them?

Don't worry about the fully developed bees in the comb, the bees the combs are given to will clean them out.  As for the larvae and pupae, cut that out or you'll have lots of problems.  Melt it down and strain out the larvae and pupae, that's what I'm doing.


Quote
These hives were extremely lethargic several days ago, moving very slowly.  Could it be Nosema?  CCD?  Evil Neighbor?  I did the rope test for AFB and it looks negative.  I'm lost.  Help?

Sean Kelly

Lethargic bees this time of year means starvation, They are acting like they would mid-February as the hive starts to come alive after the winter.  If the weather warms the bees will become more active, but the best way to make them active is to feed them.  I put feeders on the 2 hives I salvaged and they woke up rapidly, just the smell of the syrup seemed to make a big difference.  The woke up and started chugging the syrup down big time.

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indypartridge
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« Reply #8 on: June 13, 2008, 06:20:33 AM »

Sorry about your bees, Sean.

Although Brian is probably right about the weather, you might consider sending some dead bees to the Beltsville lab. Doesn't cost anything (your tax dollars at work).

Here how to do it:
http://www.masterbeekeeper.org/B_files/diagnosis.htm
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bassman1977
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« Reply #9 on: June 13, 2008, 08:59:27 AM »

Quote
As for the larvae and pupae, cut that out or you'll have lots of problems.

Why is that Brian?  I've had larvae and pupae in unused comb and after I froze it and put it back in the hive, the bees cleaned it right out.  After all, isn't this an option for mite control using drone cell?  I could understand that if you just left it unattended and let the larvae rot in the cells that there could be problems (or is that what you meant?).

Just looking for some clarification.  Thanks.
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Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #10 on: June 13, 2008, 09:19:51 PM »

Quote
As for the larvae and pupae, cut that out or you'll have lots of problems.

Why is that Brian?  I've had larvae and pupae in unused comb and after I froze it and put it back in the hive, the bees cleaned it right out.  After all, isn't this an option for mite control using drone cell?  I could understand that if you just left it unattended and let the larvae rot in the cells that there could be problems (or is that what you meant?).

Just looking for some clarification.  Thanks.

If the amount of remaining worker bees is insufficient to clean out the underdeveloped brood it can rot in the cell.  From the rotting you can get EFB, AFB, and several other maladies that will further tax the bees into oblivion.  Freezing and putting larvae or pupae back into the hive is different in that the freezing arrests or kills the sources of disease.  Leaving in the hive lets those sources go wild. So yes, remove before rotting sets in is what I meant.  Fully mature bees, that die of starvation as they try to emerge can be left in the combs as they don't rot the same way as larvae and pupae do.
Another thing to remember is that in a starvation situation, where a lot of adult bees have died, there is no longer enough bees to cover the capped and developing brood so they die and begin to rot.  The bees will eat the eggs 1st, larvae, 2nd, and pupae last while in starvation mode because the hatching bees can strengthen the hive, maybe long enough to survive the starvation situation.
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Dane Bramage
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« Reply #11 on: June 13, 2008, 09:36:07 PM »

Bees are dead eh Sean?  "Wrote a song 'bout it.. like to hear it, hear it go" ~>
o' death




Condolences. 

Things are nuts (in a good way) here.  Let me know if you're interested in rebuilding/buying some new hives for this season.  I might be able to work something out for ya.

Cheers,
Dane
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morb
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« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2008, 11:15:48 PM »

Sorry to hear bout your bees, hope it wasn't your neighbors. Awesome song though.
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Cindi
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« Reply #13 on: June 14, 2008, 09:41:18 AM »

Sean, so sorry to hear of this terrible thing.  I know, I have had starved bees before, felt bad, learned lessons.  Jody was right, I almost lost a colony to starvation, they are still bringing out the dead.  I fed all my colonies and they sucked down the baggie of sugar syrup like there was no tomorrow.  I will be feeding for at least a couple of more days.  I think that our weather may finally be breaking, we look like sunshine coming today.  The blackberry flow should be coming soon, but not here just yet.

Keep your chin up Sean, I know that is hard to do when things have gone amuck.  But keep on trying, working with the bees, slowly, but surely, you will get the numbers back up that you want.  Have a wonderful, great day, chins up.  Cindi
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« Reply #14 on: June 14, 2008, 09:51:43 AM »

Sean, sorry to hear it.  I always wonder why I never looked, even though the weight was right.  I agree with sending them in for testing and I also hope it's not from what someone else may have done.  Good luck on rebuilding.
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« Reply #15 on: June 14, 2008, 09:52:14 AM »

Sorry to hear of your losses Sean, all you can do is get back on the horse and ride again, keep your chin up.


Best of luck,


...JP
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« Reply #16 on: June 14, 2008, 10:08:15 AM »

Oh Sean,  So saddened to hear to the bees perishing. Hope you rally back to full tilt boogie soon...
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« Reply #17 on: June 14, 2008, 11:24:54 PM »

Really Sean, That IS a drag with your bees Sad
If it was me I would really be bumming. You and me started about the same time didnt we?
 At first i thought it sounded like poison.....Then after some of our friends chimed in it did sound like starvation......I just started feeding my bees ( 5 hives now) again this year...I didnt plan on it but I noticed they had eaten about all their honey stores from the winter and its the middle of June now...Theyre not getting much nectar I guess because we've been so dry here....This whole season has been pretty weird.
Anyways, maybe something good will happen for you soon!

Your friend,
john
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Cindi
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« Reply #18 on: June 15, 2008, 11:30:33 AM »

Sean, keep your chin up, saying it again, sending my thoughts to you, be happy.  Have a wonderful day, that Father's Day, you are one of the greats.  Cindi
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« Reply #19 on: June 15, 2008, 03:30:26 PM »

Sorry about your bees.  I would definately try to figure out what happened there send them off to be tested.  If in fact it leads you to suspect your neighbor then there is an easy way to fix the problem.  Get a trail cam and lock it down to a tree or post you'll eigther catch your neighbor red handed or it will stop.  Eigther way mission accompished!
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