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Author Topic: Weak hive, feed?  (Read 896 times)

Offline Modenacart

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Weak hive, feed?
« on: August 28, 2013, 10:25:21 PM »
I have two hives, one really strong one and one really weak. I was feeding both with Boardman feeders and the strong hive destroyed the weak one and it swarmed.  I caught it, moved the hive and started to use a hive top. The strong hive still wouldn't leave it alone. The only way I got it to stop was by open feeding far away in a different direction from the weak hive. 

The weak hive is maybe two frames of bees.  I saw eggs when I opened it two days ago.  I stole two frames of brood and honey and added it to the weak hive.  They have some honey and the myrtles and rose of Sharon are in bloom. I see the strong hive bringing in whitish pollen and orange pollen. I see few bees leaving the weak hive but I don't really see their sacks full when they return.  They also have mites pretty bad.

Should I feed them or just see what happens.  I am terrified to feed them after what happened before.  The strong hive was relentless.

Offline sawdstmakr

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Re: Weak hive, feed?
« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2013, 11:06:34 PM »
How strong is your strong hive? How many supers? Can you take a few fa mes or a super of honey and give it to the weak hive using the news paper method to join them? I do not like feed bees. New studies have shown that honey from natural sources is much better than what they make from sugar water.
Never buy honey to feed your bees.
Jim
"If you don't read the newspaper you are uninformed.  If you do read the newspaper you are misinformed."--Mark Twain

Offline Modenacart

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Re: Weak hive, feed?
« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2013, 11:11:29 PM »
The bottom brood box had eight full deep frames when I stole two from it about a week and a half ago.  They were working some of the frames in the deep above it.  I plan on checking this weekend to see how many have been worked. 

I have also noticed some drones outside the strong hive.  Some were going in and out and some were getting kicked out.

Offline Modenacart

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Re: Weak hive, feed?
« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2013, 11:12:17 PM »
As far as I can tell there is a queen in the weak hive. She has been very hard to find. She hides very well.

Offline Modenacart

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Re: Weak hive, feed?
« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2013, 11:22:40 PM »
Let me qualify my strong hive as strong compared to the weak on. It had 8 deep frames two full of honey and the rest brood, pollen and little honey and they were drawing comb in the deep above it.

Offline Wolfer

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Re: Weak hive, feed?
« Reply #5 on: August 29, 2013, 12:29:05 AM »
The weak hive can't build up with 2 frames of bees. It just takes too long. She can only lay what eggs her bees can take care of.
Your on the right track by giving her some brood. That will boost her nurse population and she can lay more eggs. That brood will hatch in less than 9 days. About that time I'd give her another if she needed it. A frame of brood will make two frames of bees or more.

Unless they had a flow on I'd feed the strong hive and swap out frames with the weak one. A frame or two every week or so. It wouldn't have to be capped, open necter will be fine, possibly preferred.
The weak hive needs all it's bees to raise brood their not going to be able to spare any for foraging.
I'd just shake the bees off when I exchanged the frames.

If it got too late in the year and it didn't look like they'd make it I'd combine then. Good luck, Woody

Offline Modenacart

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Re: Weak hive, feed?
« Reply #6 on: August 30, 2013, 09:42:26 PM »
The eggs don't seem to be growing and almost every bee has mites.  I think I might just let them run their course.

Offline Wolfer

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Re: Weak hive, feed?
« Reply #7 on: August 30, 2013, 10:06:17 PM »
You can see the mites on the bees?

Offline Modenacart

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Re: Weak hive, feed?
« Reply #8 on: August 30, 2013, 11:36:20 PM »
Yes, on most of them.  Little reddish circles.

Offline Modenacart

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Re: Weak hive, feed?
« Reply #9 on: August 31, 2013, 03:48:53 PM »
Lot of them just died. There are less than 100 bees.  It's done.