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We had temps in the low 60s today so I opened up my hive to see if I should feed and there were only a few bees left. The bottom board had thousands of dead bees, so many I couldn't find the queen. There was plenty of honey left. There was no new brood at all so I am guessing the queen died sometime during the winter. I called Apple Blossom to order 2 new packages and told the nice lady there what happened and she agreed to what happened . I still had beetles in my hive but she told me they were not likely SHBs but wood beetles. She told me that if the beetles were running about the hive that they were not SHBs because they are hiders. Anyway, I pulled out a few frames of honey that had beetles all over them and am going to freeze them to kill the bugs and feed my new bees. Also she told me that there was a problem last year around here with too much moisture in the honey and a lot of people like me ended up thinking their honey was tainted or fermented . I was under the impression that the bees wait until the moisture content is right before they cap it. The good thing about all this is I have a lot of drawn out frames to start my new packages with and plenty of honey to feed them. Live and learn. :roll:
 

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Good attitude to have, it will happen to anybody who keeps any kind of livestock!

Hope all goes well with the new bees you ordered.

I lost several hives this year, was cleaning out one dead out and found the queen pinched between two frames, what luck.
 

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While I am certain that you have read previous posts about winter losses, and possible causes, doesn't help at the time of the loss. That sorta sick feeling, to see all the effort, and work go down the tubes, but there is a learning curve that happens with experience, whether good or bad, take that knowledge and apply it to the next colonies you start and see if what you learned works this time around--life is an continuing experiment and we keep working to make the experiment work.
Good Luck
Barry
 

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Letitbe, I'm sorry to hear that. I know how crummy it feels. :(
You're right though- the frames of comb and honey you have will give your new packages a huge jump start.
 

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in any number of locations (and somewhat related to the kind of bloom the bees are working in that vicinity) bees have collected and capped 'wet' honey. tallow honey collected down around the Houston, Tx has a reputation for being 'wet'. producer of such stuff get it off and into a barrel and sold as quickly as possible. fermenting honey will blow off the tops of barrels and makes for quite a mess. most producers don't want to take the chance of storing such stuff.
 

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letitbee, I am in the same shape. I lost both of my hives as well. I plan to get back up on that horse. It's all a learning experience. The one thing I have learned is that sometimes it's out of our control.
 

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I have found that the more hives I have, the more I appreciate the occasional one that dies, because I'm always behind on drawn comb.
 
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