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Author Topic: Can Anyone ID What Killed Them From These Photos???  (Read 2188 times)
monkeyfish
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« on: February 07, 2006, 08:36:56 PM »

Greetings,

I'll be the first to admit, I've been a lazy beekeeper...or more accurately, just too much on my plate (between keeping ducks, playing my guitar, brewing beer, kayaking, world travel etc..)..

Yes, last year was very dry up here and I did have a growing varroa mite problem and I never medicated...and rarely fed them, then we had that storm that blew the cover off and left just the inner cover to shield them from 2 inches of rain in September.

All that abuse & neglect was just too much to bear.. even for bees! Now I'm thinking of giving this another shot... but wonder if anyone can identify what these piles of white stuff in the comb is.(same consistancy as pollen).. and also... can I re-use these frames again... how should I prepare them for my next group of 'victims'???


Thanks,
~Scott





Scott:

I fixed the images, check the link addys to see what went wrong - I'll write you about the photos, let the gang work on this!!!
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monkeyfish
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« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2006, 09:01:04 PM »

sorry....And now.... the pictures!!





ps. the greenish moldy fuzz came after I put them away in the garage.
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gsferg
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« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2006, 06:55:46 AM »

It doesn't look particularly good. I'm no expert and It's hard to tell from the photos if the white cells are just mold but it looks like dead brood. It's reminicent of EFB (European Foulbrood) but I wouldn't say so for sure. Where are all the bees? There must be a pile on the bottom board. If you had a lot of mites, you should see skads of dead mites on the bottom board. Mites usually kill brood in the pupal stage (capped cells) but heavy mite infestations can encourage other brood diseases.

If you google around you'll find pictures and descriptions of honey bee brood diseases. Here's a link to some photos of EFB:

http://photo.bees.net/gallery/EFB

Look to see if it is brood and if they're curled up in a "C" shape. Check for perforated cappings (I couldn't clearly see any capped brood in your pictures). Check for any smell, bad or otherwise. I'd do a "rope" test and a Holt's milk test to rule out AFB and I wouldn't hesitate for a second to send a sample off to a lab for a definitive identification. I'd Contact my State Apiariest for their opinion. That's what they're there for.

George-
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2006, 06:57:56 AM »

Looks like frames of pollen with a little white mold on them.  The bees will clean up the mold so don't worry about it.  How old is the pollen?  As it gets older it loses nutritional value and if it's too dry and old it may be at the point where it's more work for the bees to clean it out than to build new comb.
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Michael Bush
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Jay
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« Reply #4 on: February 08, 2006, 09:25:41 AM »

Quote from: Michael Bush
Looks like frames of pollen with a little white mold on them.  The bees will clean up the mold so don't worry about it.


I agree, looks just like a couple of different kinds of pollen, some of which has a bit of mold. I also agree that the next bees (victims) will have no trouble cleaning this up. It's always a good head start to have drawn comb for a new package, it gives the queen somewhere to lay right away. But if you're going to go with a nuc (which has some drawn comb) you might want to cull out some of the worst of the moldy frames. Good luck this year! Cheesy
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gsferg
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« Reply #5 on: February 08, 2006, 03:47:19 PM »

Geez I hope you guys are right. I at first thought moldy pollen, but then there's all that un-moldy pollen all around it, and mixed in with it and some of the cells of white "stuff" are only half full. I couldn't tell from the pictures that it wasn't brood. It's even towards center-frame where you'd expect brood.

Perhaps Scot can clear this up.
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monkeyfish
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« Reply #6 on: February 08, 2006, 06:36:06 PM »

Thanks for your ideas on this!

No, this isn't brood...
I picked some of these apart and it seemed to be just the top layer with the white 'pollen-ish' stuff and the usual orange and yellow pollen underneath... no odor or goo consistency.

So , maybe this is just another variety that was brought into the hive late during their final days?? I wouldn't expect it to be white, but , then again I don't have more than a couple years under my belt with this stuff.

Sounds like the general consensus is - this may not be anything big to worry about, and I can re-use these frames... There is also a good amount of honey in there too... which should be a welcome offering for the new gang!?

Thanks,
~Scott
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gsferg
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« Reply #7 on: February 09, 2006, 06:35:02 AM »

Glad to hear it Scot. I've seen similar looking frames in heavily mite infested hives with dead brood that looked like that, though not as much of it.

So, if it's just moldy pollen in the frame, what killed your bees?
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