Is there something attacking our queens?

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by onehorse, Mar 21, 2010.

  1. onehorse

    onehorse New Member

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    After going through the hive of our sole survivor colony (Wohooo, 6 live bees!), I found the remains of yet another emergency queen cell. This is the 3rd hive out of 4 that had queen issues for us right before winter? The fourth hive had gotten a new queen in the fall due to queen issues that may or may not be related. Of these 3 hives, one was a spring package, but 2 were swarms, one swarm was from an unmanaged 10 yr old bee tree, the other came from who knows where. All of these queens where very productive through out the year. Is there something attacking queens? Is there something in my area in specific that could be causing this that I need to watch for?
     
  2. Omie

    Omie New Member

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    My only hive, which was robust last Fall, had its queen die for unknown reasons at the beginning of December. I found her tossed out in front of the hive. The hive dwindled and died off during the winter, with no signs of disease or starvation- obviously, they couldn't replace aging workers or raise a new queen during the dead of winter. When I inspected the dead hive last week, there were only a few hundred dead bees and no queen cells or brood remains.
    I'll never know why the queen died.
     

  3. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    genetics could definitely be playing a part.

    and/or

    there was a lot of hub bub in the old magazines (say perhaps mid 1980'ish) in regards to early and frequent queen superscedure and nosema. one published blind test (I think it was out of Nebraska) was quite remarkable in regards to the range of superscedure rates from various 'known' package producers. nosema was tagged as being pretty much the culprit. we have one more form of nosema now than we had way back then.
     
  4. CentralPAGuy

    CentralPAGuy New Member

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    OneHorse,

    6 bees. that sucks. Do you think that the queen died in the fall. I have been more fortunate. I have one confirmed dead and another that I am suspicious, but most of mine survived. I did baby them and fed them lots of sugar syrup in the fall and treated them with formic acid.

    I had mine on open SBB and I don't think that I'll do that again. I am suspicious that it was too much cold air coming in.