Indiana Weather Cold and Rainy

Discussion in 'Beekeeping 101' started by blueblood, Apr 22, 2012.

  1. blueblood

    blueblood New Member

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    This weather up here makes me nervous with these hives. Cold and rainy. I found five fresh dead bees on my entrance of my weaker hive after work yesterday with very little movement from my view through the bottom screen (maybe they moved up the deep to stay warm??). There were more dead bees than usual on the bottom screen. My strong hive had about five or six walking around the entrance. There were a handful of them under the frames but above the screen moving around all pissed off. They buzzed louder when I stuck my head under there. Dumb me, I had a brown sock cap on....when I walked over to the weaker hive, one started darting at my head and followed me away from the hive a few yards until I took the hat off. First experience with bees being grouchy because of the weather. I wonder if they get cabin fever being all cooped up in the rain. My hives are only 19 days old and I figure there has not been enough time for brood to develop and some of these packaged bees have to be nearing the end of their life cycle. Cold weather/rain maybe hurried along the process? Feeders have syrup and they have been collecting goodies, so I don't believe they are starving.
     
  2. efmesch

    efmesch Active Member

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    Sounds normal to me.
    If you'd like to get an estimate of the size and location of your bee population, go to the hive at night and give it a firm slap or a knock (not strong enough to move anything from its' position) and listen for the bees response "buzz". Do it a few times on different hives and you'lll get the hang of it. You'll soon be able to estimate how things are going with minimum effort. It's amazing how the bees will talk to you when you learn their language.
     

  3. Eddy Honey

    Eddy Honey New Member

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    I hope it warms up out there! I'm headed to Richmond, IN on Tuesday for the rest of the week!
     
  4. crazy8days

    crazy8days New Member

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    Like they say here in Indiana, "If you don't like the weather, give it a few and it will change!" I was suppose to get my nucs first of April but with the cold weather they bumped me till first of May. I guess that's a good thing. But, for a new beek ready to get the show on the road the wait stinks.
     
  5. blueblood

    blueblood New Member

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    @efmesch: I will try that....reminds me cow tipping, ha! I hope they are fine...I'm being a nervous first parent w/these bees all over again I guess.

    @Eddy: Richmond is not too far from here. It is supposed to gradually move back to the 60's butpartly cloudy

    @crazy8: Yeap, that' Indiana for ya! Bummer you have to wait. I'm anxious to get two more packages or nucs...looks like May for me too. May will probably be better anyway w/warmer temps. I hived mine April 3rd but it was in the mid to high 70's that week.
     
  6. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    sounds normal for the cooler weather, they get a little ill when it is cool, cloudy, overcast, sun not shining type of weather.
     
  7. blueblood

    blueblood New Member

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    Thanks G...I figured as much but wasn't completely sure. I won't feel better until I see them busy flying in and out on a sunny day...
     
  8. pturley

    pturley New Member

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    Think Indiana is bad, NE Ohio is even worse! They are forecasting from 1-3 inches of snow tomorrow!

    It is supposed to get up into the 50s later this afternoon so I added a feeder to the package bees I just hived in a nuc on Thursday evening. Being introduced on Thursday with Friday being the only warm day since, they didn't have time to start foraging. They have a small amount of honey in the three drawn frames I used to start them off, but only small patches in the corners. I doubt this would be enough stores for the week.
     
  9. blueblood

    blueblood New Member

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    Ewww boy, that doesn't sound like fun....
     
  10. Eddy Honey

    Eddy Honey New Member

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    49F and a steady rain in NJ and the bees are flying to the waterer. They could just slurp up some water from their front porch but nooooo...lol
     
  11. efmesch

    efmesch Active Member

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    Paul, allow me to confirm your doubts ( "I doubt this would be enough stores for the week."). If you want to keep them alive and happy, and the weather and flowers are not in optimum performance, you better start feeding fast.
     
  12. blueblood

    blueblood New Member

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    I peeked under the hood very gently without smoke and found several bees crawling around the top of the middle frames of the weaker hive I was concerned about. That was a relief to see them there. The bees in the stronger hive are concentrated on the bottom of the frames and feisty too. Maybe the queen is located in differently from one hive to the other?? It was a little more sunny and over 50 today. There were a few bees coming and going from both hives but more so from the stronger. This is why you all say it's good to start with two hives so a newbie can see differences like this...
     
  13. Walt B

    Walt B New Member

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    You folks in the midwest and northeast hunker down and stay warm. Just saw the forecast from the network and there's a snow storm heading your way. Supposed to drop a foot or so in some places. Stay safe.

    Walt
     
  14. BoilerJim

    BoilerJim New Member

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    Hi Blueblood.

    Being a fellow "hoosier beekeeper" I am enjoying the same weather you are.:grin: When they can't get out of the hive due to the weather then they spend a little more time "cleaning house" and getting rid of dead and dying. Like efmesch said, if these are new bees you've just gotten, I'd feed them, especially if they didn't have drawn comb from last year to build on.

    Good luck and enjoy.

    Jim
     
  15. pturley

    pturley New Member

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    It didn't snow after all. The front was well east of us. The weather has warmed considerably now. Still a bit cool in the upper fiftys yesterday, but definately flying weather. Today and tomorrow morning should both be a bit warmer still (60s), then rain again tomorrow night.

    The package of bees must be particularly frugal as they've only used about 1 cup (8 oz.) of the one quart feeder I added on Sunday. True to the reputation for "Carniolans" to be sure!

    EDIT: Yes, I have confirmed it is working... There is a drop hanging at all times.