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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A while ago I read this piece on Pollen Cell Encapsulation, where bees entomb poisoned pollen.
http://www.naturalnews.com/032057_honey ... ollen.html

Today I was looking through the frames of my dead hive and found this:




It had been sealed in that odd gray-brown stuff, not propolis like the article describes. I broke it open - It is hard on the outside, but not really thick like a mud-wasp nest, so it broke easily. This frame has been sitting around, stored outside, for months. If it was there when I cleared out the dead hive, I did not notice it - but it was the end frame, against the box, and I did not pull every frame out at the time.

Has anyone seen anything like this? Is it the doing of bees? Something else? Always in the back of my mind is the pesticide-happy farm next door.
 

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never seen anything like that!! Almost looks like some sort of mud dauber or solitary bee building a nest, the exception being the opening on the top rather than the bottom. Have you cut into just a cell to see what is inside of it, like and egg case, spider bodies, different compartments, etc.

Is the gray stuff mud or something else, if mud should dissolve in water.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I broke open the one cell shown in the photo - it was all sealed in brown when I found it. There appears to be nothing but pollen inside.

Just went and checked a piece of the shell. It is probably mud - it dissolved instantly. But it is very thin and brittle, not like a mud dauber nest.
 

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Poke open a couple more and see if it stinks. Some wasps down here will fill every small orifice they can find. Stinks from the decaying insect they stuff in there to feed their young.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The regional bee inspector stopped by today, and he's never seen anything like it, either. He thought it looked like something a mud wasp would do, but had never seen mud packed with pollen like that. He noted that the pollen was very dry, if it indeed pollen.

He took samples of the mud and the pollen and said the lab would be thrilled to have something new and strange to look at. Could not guarantee the lab would send results, but I will keep in touch.

Will post again if anything new is learned.
 
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