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Nearly dead hive

 
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rendauphin
House Bee


Joined: 28 Sep 2011
Posts: 15
Location: United Kingdom, Dorset, Bridport

PostPosted: Sun Jun 01, 2014 8:28 pm    Post subject: Nearly dead hive Reply with quote

Here is a link to some pictures of comb in a hive that only just survived the winter. https://flic.kr/ps/2e4qZV
There is no brood, no stores just lots of drones. There is also a strange invader that has tunnelled into the comb. Any interpretation would be very helpful
Thanks
jim
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Che Guebuddha
Golden Bee


Joined: 31 Jan 2012
Posts: 1549
Location: Hårlev, Stevns Kommune, Denmark

PostPosted: Sun Jun 01, 2014 10:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I too had a hive come out of the winter queen-less and they developed a Laying Worker who only lays unfertilized eggs which become Drones. This is their last attempt to spread their genes via their drones mating with virgin queens (not stupid at all).

I gave them a comb from another colony with eggs and young larvae in hope they will try and raise a new queen but they very likely new its not their blood so they ignored the this "kind" act of mine. Lots of drone brood no Queen Cups. And since they dwindled like yours I decided to give all their combs to a growing split of mine and in two days all the remaining bees, together with their laying worker died.

In case a laying worker colony is still strong one can shake out all the bees 50 meters from their current location and let them return. All house bees together with the laying worker bee will be lost but the flying bees will go back. Re-queening could be an option or giving them a comb with new eggs from another colony. Im not sure if it possible to combine such colony with a stronger colony via the newspaper method?
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trekmate
Golden Bee


Joined: 30 Nov 2009
Posts: 1123
Location: UK, North Yorkshire, Bentham

PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2014 7:21 am    Post subject: Re: Nearly dead hive Reply with quote

rendauphin wrote:
There is also a strange invader that has tunnelled into the comb. Any interpretation would be very helpful
Thanks
jim

Looks like wax-moth larva damage. A strong colony should cope, but a weak one cannot! You might see small white maggots in the tunnels. You can try hooking them out with a pin.
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