Hungry bees weren't able to forage--Forum great resource

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by CarrollwoodBees, Jul 12, 2012.

  1. CarrollwoodBees

    CarrollwoodBees New Member

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    When I posted about why one hive was doing well and bringing in nectar and the other I had to feed, tecumseh, suggested the hive might just be too weak to forage. When I had opened the hive, I saw no uncapped honey and some bees with their heads way down in the cells. From a pic I saw on the web that showed starving bees bottoms up, I thought, hmmm. So I fed and posted here. Only Tecumseh suggested they might be too weak. I assumed everyone else agreed with him.

    Since the feed has been on a week, they are now all flying and active! Yeah! Maybe soon they can pull in sufficient nectar so they won't need feeding anymore, probably Sept. here in central florida with our usual summer dearth.

    This forum is a great resource mostly because it means I don't have to continually impose on the one or two experienced beekeepers that I know. I'm sure they're happy, too. :grin:
     
  2. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    It is hard to argue with a man that knows, as in the case of Tecumseh. What he says usaully tells it all and no more is needed.

    Glad we ""HE"" could help. That's why we live daily on the forum. :D
     

  3. CarrollwoodBees

    CarrollwoodBees New Member

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    Yeah, I'm getting as addicted to this forum as I am to google and facebook. Thanks?
     
  4. Zulu

    Zulu Member

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    Glad it worked out, also glad you saved those bees.
     
  5. Omie

    Omie New Member

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    Glad they are doing better!
    If one has 2 or more hives, sometimes it's ok to steal a frame of honey or nectar from a nice strong hive and give it to the weaker hive. Easier and more nutritious than making syurp and placing feeders! However one must always be careful to not compromise the strong hive too much. :) Better to have one strong hive than two weak ones!
    Another approach is to give the weaker hive a frame of capped brood- that will boost the number of foragers they have pretty quickly.
     
  6. CarrollwoodBees

    CarrollwoodBees New Member

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    Borrowing frames from one hive to give to other

    The problem was that the other hive is all mediums and this hive is all brood chambers (I had been trying to do a split when the b's --and i don't mean bees -- swarmed on me and the split failed.

    I had 3 hives in early spring and one (deep/med super) failed due to shb/ants invasion, so it was combined with other two: some frames to deep/deep and some to med/med. But deep/deep was not recovering fast enough from swarm because of our spring drought. Hardly any orange blossom this year and no ligustrum or much else. If it weren't for the weeds, they'd have had nothing.

    I really am using all my brain cells for this hobby. I'm thinking I better manufacture more 'cause I'm gonna need 'em.
     
  7. Dunkel

    Dunkel New Member

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    Some people might claim the lack of brain cells is what got you started with bees in the first place:smile:
     
  8. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    It was for me! :thumbsup: I actually thought that this would be a great hobby and that I could make a few $$ at it! :lol: :rolling: :rotfl:
     
  9. efmesch

    efmesch Active Member

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    Does that mean that there WAS capped honey ? Or did you mean that there was neither?
    Sometimes, a family will be so protective of its stored honey that even when direly in need of it, they won't open capped cells. (Like people who would rather starve than open a savings account.) In such a case, instead of feeding with syrup, you can scratch the surfaces of the cappings and expose the stored honey. Then the bees will feed on it.
     
  10. CarrollwoodBees

    CarrollwoodBees New Member

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    Yes, there was capped honey

    Yes, there was some capped honey. I'd seen this phenomenon before and lost a hive to it. They have capped honey frames, but are still starving. That was my first year and I never did manage to save those bees, even after an old-timer came over and pointed out they were starving and I started feeding. Too late. I was too inexperienced, and I kept thinking, well, you got a couple of full frames of capped honey, why aren't you taking that? How hungry do you have to get before you'll break into your stash? Well, apparently pretty hungry. I started feeding, but they were too weak by that time and the wax moths got them.

    This time, somewhere in the fog of my mind, I thought about scratching the caps so they would be forced to feed on it or lose it, but I wasn't sure. The old-timer told me that if there's no loose honey, they are starving. So this time, I was so anxious about them being hungry, I just fed. Feed first, think later--that's my motto now.
     
  11. CarrollwoodBees

    CarrollwoodBees New Member

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    Yeah. I said to AmericasBeekeeper one day that I hoped to make a little money with this hobby. He said "If you want to make a little money, start out with a lot." So far, so true.
     
  12. riverbee

    riverbee Active Member

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    dunkel said:
    "Some people might claim the lack of brain cells is what got you started with bees in the first place"

    carrollwoodbee says:
    "Yeah. I said to AmericasBeekeeper one day that I hoped to make a little money with this hobby. He said "If you want to make a little money, start out with a lot." So far, so true.

    i think there is something to be said about dunkel's post applying to thinking you will make money on bees as a hobby, not only do i have a lack of brain cells for keeping bees, but a lack of brain cells for this concept: every year my financial guy tells me that i can't buy or hoard any more equipment or bees until i start making money :lol:

    gee what a concept:grin:

    aw shoot, you only live once, and if i have less brain cells, i had fun getting there:lol:
     
  13. Dunkel

    Dunkel New Member

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    The old saying that "great minds think alike". I also fear that the not so great minds do the same. Its funny that bee people search out others like them even more so than other endeavors. I guess other interests have people to call on when they have issues like vets and mechanics. I also think there aren't many people who want to hear about making splits, requeening issues and hive management. I know my wife sure don't

    This seems to be a great forum with fantastic people who are willing to take the time to give advise. But I still worry about you all since I seem to enjoy reading each post and I know I am not right in the head. :smile:
    Carrol I am glad you have found a direction to follow on your hive. I didn't think bees would starve on capped honey. It kind of has me thinking about a few colonies I have had to starve in the winter with capped honey. Maybe they weren't all the results of the cluster not being able to reach it.
     
  14. Marbees

    Marbees Member

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    And I still believe that.:lol:
     
  15. CarrollwoodBees

    CarrollwoodBees New Member

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    Starving with capped honey

    I don't know with you up there in Kentucky. You have real winters. Our bees in Florida rarely go more than 3 days with temps that are below 50 degrees in winter, so they're usually able to get to the honey wherever it is in the hive. But I'd still scratch the capped honey to make sure they can access it in mid to late winter, or a dearth, now that I know that. You'd probably still want to move those scratched honey frames closer to the brood nest, just in case.
     
  16. Dunkel

    Dunkel New Member

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    Carrolwood I agree, now I have something else to look for and keep an eye on. Last year we didn't have 15 days below freezing, but the year before we it went 32 days in a row without getting above freezing. I lost severals hives due to condensation. I never know what to expect from one winter to another. After a couple of weeks above 100 I have no idea what to expect this year.