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Author Topic: Comb question  (Read 1093 times)

Offline wd

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Comb question
« on: November 12, 2009, 06:54:53 PM »
What is and what would cause comb to turn into a cardboard like substance?

Other symptoms: piles of dead bees inside on bottom board, dead bees in cells face in.

Hive was 10 frame brood chamber only. no screened bottom board, slow to grow. started with eight frames. No treatments were given of any kind. no signs of wax moth or ants when colony was alive and active nor after death.

« Last Edit: November 12, 2009, 07:11:17 PM by wd »

Offline JP

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Re: Comb question
« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2009, 07:46:46 PM »
Bees face in could very well be bees that starved. Are their proboscis (tongues) sticking out?

Cardboard like as in shredded or tough?


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Offline wd

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Re: Comb question
« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2009, 10:03:43 PM »
took some pictures. I think I ought to give a little more detail.

The hive in question didn't make it through their first winter and is 1 of 5 sitting amongst orchards of prunes, walnuts, peaches, olives along with black berry's and other flora. They have all been sitting for a few years empty. Last Tuesday I picked them up to prepare for spring.

The comb is lacking moisture, hard, brittle and black in some areas while others look and act like brown corrugated cardboard. Meaning flexible and retains some shape yet will turn into dust with more handling. I peeled it off with soft rubber from a key chain like those one gets when buying a car, lumber, hardware etc with a name on it.

Here's a piece that stayed together. I left the pictures as large as I could.





Whats puzzling is this hive is sitting roughly 40 ft away with a difference. It was 2 hive body's deep, one med super and one deep in that order for honey. This was the strongest I had. still stumped on what happened but moving on with lessons learned.

brood chamber with wax moth


medium honey


medium honey


deep honey









« Last Edit: November 12, 2009, 11:53:53 PM by wd »

Online kathyp

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Re: Comb question
« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2009, 10:19:08 PM »
was there a lot of chewed up wax on the bottom board?  i see very little honey and none capped.  if i had to venture a guess, i'd say robbed out, weakened, then wax moth.

the condition of the wax is less a both to me. weather, age, and wax moth can probably account for the differences.  looks like plastic foundation?
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Offline wd

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Re: Comb question
« Reply #4 on: November 12, 2009, 10:26:35 PM »
yes it is a solid plastic frame, wanted to try them out. There was some dust on the bottom board with piles of bees but not one wax moth cocoon. thanks for the response all. 
« Last Edit: November 12, 2009, 11:48:13 PM by wd »