Winter kill rates

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by BjornBee, Jan 14, 2010.

  1. Hobie

    Hobie New Member

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    After last winter, I refuse to count my bees until the dandelions bloom. I lost both my hives between late Feb and early March last year.
     
  2. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    Checked mine yesterday and my strongest hive is a dead out. Not sure what happened yet, still had a super almost full of honey, so i sat it over on another hive that was on the light side. Oh well more equipment for swarms this spring.

    Down to two hives and a bee tree now.

    G3
     

  3. sqkcrk

    sqkcrk New Member

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    :) which one is your strongest now?:) How strong was the hive that you set the honey on? Adding a cold super of honey to a colony that is on the weak side, yet still getting by, may not be the right thing to do. I hope they are of enuf population to keep themselves warm enuf and to expand into the new super as they grow.

    Best of beekeeping luck to you.
     
  4. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    From what I could tell there were at least 4 to 5 frames of bees in a ten frame box, did not really take the time to look too hard since they were a little upset I popped the top on them.

    That is a very good point about a cold super of honey, never even thought about that. Guess it would have been better to put the super on the bottom.

    It is raining again so I did not get the chance to go through the dead out hive to see what happened to them.

    G3
     
  5. Mama Beek

    Mama Beek New Member

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    So far we still see bees at each entrance when it's not raining. I hope all of them make it this year!!
     
  6. rast

    rast New Member

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    I lost another one in the past two weeks, found it Sun. when checking and replenishing patties. Already robbed out. Suspected a problem when the sypup feeder still had a lot in it. Another one weak. Only four or five frames of bees.
     
  7. sqkcrk

    sqkcrk New Member

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    Allen Dick wrote on another forum that bees have a hard time digesting syrup during the winter because they don't have everything they need, which they do during normal nectar flows. He equates syrup, whether corn syrup or sugar syrup, w/ nectar, not w/ honey.

    I'll have to read what he said again so I can be more clear about this.
     
  8. barry42001

    barry42001 New Member

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    My lone colony is in fine shape, and pollen comming in dispite the cold weather last 2 days been inside with thier long underwear on, but on the whole I expect good things. I have read in earlier books that corn syrup contains high levels of indigestible matter. This isn't too much of a issue durning the mid to late spring time when cleansing flights are available-but in the late winter and early spring when the bees spend more time indoors then out, dysentary is a constant possibility, I have only ever feed sugar syrup, and only after I was fairly certian the bees could get out. I much prefer that the bees use thier honey--after is why they gathered it to begin with.
    Barry
     
  9. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    I like to feed sucrose... I think the science is pretty clear about the benefits of sugar relative to the alternatives (and yes even honey).

    It seems to me barry that as the syrup gets cold and the bee's activity slows and even with boardman type feeders just above the brood nest consumption slows. 1 to 1 (sucrose syrup) or less should be something like nectar, 2 to 1 more like stores,,, one should stimulate brood production and the other should add weight.
     
  10. sqkcrk

    sqkcrk New Member

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    Allen Dick was writing about the bees ability to invert the sugars found in HFCS and sugar syrup or dry sugar. They can do it during normal nectar flow times of the year, but have trouble other times of the year.

    What tec says about sucrose is what I learned in college, that bees winter better on comb stored sugar syrup then they do one honey. There are fewer minerals to cause problems in the bees digestive system. That's the way i remember it anyway.
     
  11. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    well mark allen dick is someone to listen to for certain... although I would be curious as to the mechanism that he thought was constrained in regards to inverting the sugar. it might give reason as to why candy boards (where the sugar is already is inverted) were always thought superior to almost any other means of feeding.

    it seems to me mark that the 'really old guys' (you know the folks even older than you and I, like iddee for example) when they would place hives in cellars or basements anywhere along the northern edge of the country would stock these with almost clear white honey. this was suppose to lessen digestive problem and increase winter survival rates.
     
  12. Bitty Bee

    Bitty Bee New Member

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    We gave our hives pollen patties today. We had one dead out, which leaves us with four now. :cry:
    I think they starved, since their little heads were all in the holes. They still had some of the food we had given them, but their cluster was very small, so they could leave to go get it. The other hives still look good. I just hope they hang in there in a little while longer!
     
  13. Brenda

    Brenda New Member

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    I don't want to jinx my bees but as of yesterday both hives were out and flying. It's the first day in the 50's we've had for a couple of months.
    I went out and took stock of my extra hive components. Looks like I have enough to do a couple splits come springtime.
     
  14. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    I have a bee tree in the yard and not sure but don't think thy made it either, that really bums me out.

    G3
     
  15. BjornBee

    BjornBee Active Member

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    Lost two at the farm nuc yard. Tops blew off. Probably about a week ago in the big storms. I guess that 50 mph winds had something to do with it. Must be CCD....... :lol:
     
  16. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    it looks like the final 'dead out' count here at my home queens rearing yard is approximately 10%. these hives are all 5 frame nucs. dead outs in my full size hives are less and almost all are the results of a drone laying queen showing up in the hive when spring time arrived.
     
  17. rast

    rast New Member

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    I can't be sure about the first 2, but this last one was a queenless situation. They made one feeble attempt at a very small queen cell.