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Author Topic: Advice needed  (Read 768 times)

Offline abacab

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Advice needed
« on: May 18, 2009, 12:02:20 PM »
 I’m looking for some advice : my problem is one my hive simply does not grow. It is a swarm of local bees we got last year from a sideway cross. So my bees are fine, foraging activity seems normal, although a bit low.  In the hives they are on 7 frames out of 12, brood looks good, so we added 5 frames (not build but with foundation) during spring inspection, one month later these frames weren’t built and I’m wondering why they don’t develop, maybe it is an old queen laying less than expected, another explanation is the frame position in the hive: the 7 frames are not centered but are all on the right side, so do you think possible this layout block hive development?

Thanks in advance for your help and sorry for my English :)

Offline Bee Happy

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Re: Advice needed
« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2009, 12:17:16 PM »
I have a very small colony as well. they aren't taking much feed, but the queen is laying in what they have drawn out and they are very slowly building. (very slowly).  They seem to be healthy otherwise to my inexperienced eyes, as I am guessing that they have to build up to a kind of critical mass where they begin to get really moving. Their numbers are increasing slowly and I decided to treat them with a little patience, and let them grow over summer and keep all their honey for themselves. I may eventually be surprised by some very good stock.
 As to the layout I can't really answer; manipulating the frames is still something I am uncertain about.

Edit: something I forgot; Most of the experienced beekeepers on here would possibly recommend swapping the hive position with a stronger colony at around mid day. I thought of that with mine, but I decided to use the third hive as a learning opportunity. - I could be gaining workers from drift alone.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2009, 01:10:40 PM by Bee Happy »
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Offline kathyp

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Re: Advice needed
« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2009, 01:09:45 PM »
do you have a mite problem in france?  that can keep your numbers down in spite of a good brood pattern.  any other signs of disease like chalkbrood?  what do the stores look like.  is there a chance that your weaker hive is being robbed by your stronger hives?

your english is great.  far better than my french would be!!   :-D
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Offline abacab

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Re: Advice needed
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2009, 05:03:41 AM »
We do have mite problem in France, but excepted a few frames I can't inspect as they are stuck together, brood is healthy, no odour detected, bees are "normal", however I'm far from  being an expert. About robbing, not sure how to detect it.

I agree with the patience, the good news is they survived last winter - a pretty cold one from our standard - without feeding them candy so they had enough stock, I was just anxious I did something wrong. I'm not in a hurry to get honey from them, anyway, swapping hives location with a strongest colony maybe something I will consider.