Lost one of my Bee Hives
by Jimmy Earl Cooley
Bad news with the Hebert Bee Hive.
I have been watching both hives but not examined in a month. Lots of activity with going and coming but in the case of the Hebert Hive it may have been more going than coming.
Two days ago I noted less activity at the HH and yesterday almost none.
I opened today and found everybody and everything has been moved out!
Found 11 dead bees, a couple of small roaches, and one caterpillar like worm.
Bees, eggs, larva, honey, pollen, nectar and everything gone just mostly empty cells. Some cells sealed over and some black. It’s as if robber bees came in the night and removed everything. See Photos. I had two brood boxes and one super. Everything cleaned out and a good cleaning. No dead bees anywhere around except the 11 mentioned.
I completely disassembled the HH and left parts out. It seemed so clean that no bees were coming around to forage leftovers. There was very little residue on inside bottom board.
As I was finishing the disassembly I heard a loud noise at the Shirley Hive, which has been very active.
I went over and bees were swarming around the entrance and then got larger and larger and up into the sky approx 25 ft above and forward of the SH.
This is the same thing I experienced last year when the HH split. But after about 20 minutes the bees settled and all returned to the SH. I thought for sure a small swarm had left the SH but could not find one.
I am assuming it was a prelude to a split or a cleaning flight.
The SH has two brood boxes and one super. I opened the SH and it had lots of bees.
So I removed 5 frames (brood, honey, babies, and etc) from second brood box and moved to a new brood. Replaced empty spots in SH and new brood box with new frames. Moved the new brood box away to new location. After looking at number of bees now left in the SH, I decided to split again. So I moved the second brood box from SH to the location of the previous HH with a new foundation board. Then took 4 of frames from lower SH brood box and moved to second box, which I had moved to the HH location.
So now I have three boxes.
- The original HH hive is gone.
- The second brood box from the SH, along with frames from the lower SH and top is now in the original location of the HH.
- Frames from the second brood box of the SH were removed and placed in new a new brood box, along with new frames and top cover and moved to another location.
- The original SH lower brood box was left in place with new frames added and cover lid.
Hope this makes sense. Now have three hives with lots of bees and frames of essentials.
I saw the remains of a couple of queen cells that seemed to be already opened.
I did not find the queen so assume she is in one of the boxes and the other two will have to make new queen.
Sure disappointed I lost the HH. Was hoping for lots of honey.
I found a small caterpillar like worm that seemed to be eating the honey remains down in the cells.
I took lots of photos, but only sending a few. Can show you all if you wish.
THINK SH ATE THE HH!
Jimmy Earl Cooley