Hive was dead...now there are bees

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by jjjknight, Apr 1, 2014.

  1. jjjknight

    jjjknight New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Hi there. I am finishing my first year with bees. I'm down in Florida and I ended up with a problem with hive beetles. After that, at some point, I ended up with moths. Once I realized the hive was dead, I let it sit for a few weeks before the weather permitted me to get in there and clean. When I pulled off the cover, to my surprise, there were a fair number of bees that were in there. I don't know where they came from. There aren't tons of them, but they are in there and have set up a new nursery and there seems to be a queen laying. The problem is I never cleaned the frames. I was able to get several of the bad, webbed frames out and replaced, but the backs of the two center nursery frames were covered in thick webs from the moths. I scraped them as best I could, getting rid of the webs and the old wax and I was able to get the moth larvae out. My question is, with the destruction I had in the hive with the last group of bees, are these new bees doomed because they've moved into a hive that is not an optimal environment? Any suggestions on ways to help them thrive if they stand a chance? TIA!
     
  2. LazyBkpr

    LazyBkpr New Member

    Messages:
    20
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I think I might swap in a frame of brood from another hive and let them cover that, so i could get rid of the bad comb. Reduce the size of the hive etc.
     

  3. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

    Messages:
    6,487
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    a jjknight snip...
    are these new bees doomed because they've moved into a hive that is not an optimal environment?

    tecumseh...
    well quite evidently the bees who moved in knew their new home had issues but I suspect they would not have move in if they thought their situation was doomed. This is kind of how what you describe works.... the prior hive got a start but for some reason was either genetically weak or were confronted by habitat issues that did allow they to thrive. Some of the comb in the box became quite black (the results of multiple generation of brooding) and this is the primary food source of wax moth. the shb gots a foot hold first in the prior weak hive but the wax moth finishes the nasty work started by the shb. the wax moth consumes all the darkened comb in the hive but really doesn't have any interest in the new wax at the top of the stack since it contains no food value. likely in this newer wax at the top of the box is where the new swarm took up residence.

    I would remove anything below the new nest site that sustained significant shb and wax moth damage.... I would suspect there is no hurry here since the prior season's shb and wax moth consumed everything that is worth consuming.