Natural Beekeeping

Top Bar ApiRevolution has begun! Lets make some inexpensive Top Bar Hives and let them be pesticide free on their own natural comb! Che Guebee is a rebel bee fighting for the survival of the Biodiversity we all depend on and which is seriously endangered by deforestation and mono-crop agriculture! What kind of teaching have you got if you exclude nature?

Monday, February 9, 2015

3 colonies dead, 7 still going strong

Today was very warm, 7'C but it must have been warmer in the sun. Most of the colonies were flying except 3 hives so I decided to gently open up these hives and see whats up.
 After opening the first hive I heard no buzz, so I knew something was wrong. I removed all the combs and found dead bees all over the combs and hive floor. It was easy to see what happened here; the brown strokes on the hive wall is bee poo/feces and is a sure sign of a disease called Nosema. Healthy bees don't waste inside the hive but do so outside on sunny days, so called Cleansing Flights. The dead colonies are 2 last year swarms from my apiary and a split with the old queen.
Here is a close up of the bee feces (brown stuff)
Here you can see bee feces on the comb and some bees are sticking inside the combs which usually is sign of starvation but this is out of question because there is lots of capped honey just beside them and they sure had at least 6kg of stores left.
all 3 hives had the same issue with Nosema
 Dead bees clustering around a dead queen (can you see her)
Lots of stores left in these hive but I can cant give it to the other colonies because they are infected with Nosema spores. Pity really. Lets see if the other colonies can pull it off until the first spring blooms.

2 comments:

  1. So sorry for your loss, Dusko. We are in the middle of a continuous snowfall and below-freezing temperatures (in northeastern US). Beeks are concerned that the bees have not been able to take cleansing flights since mid-January at best - and no warmer temperatures in sight for at least the next 10 days. Thanks for the photos, they are educational.

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    1. No reason to be sorry. Im happy if it stays this way and the rest makes it into the spring. Lots of cold and snow means nothing. I had bees survive in the longest winter in many years 2012 (lasted until end of April) with temperatures down to -27'C and still they made it. I also had them in a mild winter and they all made it. Im sure winter can help in getting rid of weak stock but in general if the colony has strong genes and food without pesticides they will make it mild or cold. Good luck with yours :)

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