Winter Losses

Today I just had a quick look at the hive from the outside. Maureen’s bees where definitely doing well. Our bees seemed to be very inactive on the outside, which is most likely due the lack of time we spent at this hive.

Maureen said that our hive had a lot of feces on the outside of the entrance and that we may have nosema. I notice that there was quite a bit on the outside, but didn’t think it was too much to worry about.

I moved the bale of hay away from the entrance, which Maureen said was too close to the entrance. They had plenty of room before and after I moved it.

I removed the cedar insulation and the tar paper around the hive. We then opened the hive and had a look inside to see what was going on. Not a single bee in the top brood box. We looked through the second brood box and noticed that there were a handful of bees still alive in this box.

We quickly started looking for the queen. After scanning through the box we found the queen. She happened to be a new queen as our old queen had a dot and this one did not.

With the lack of bees we decided to reduce the hive to one brood box. By lifting the top brood box we saw that there was a still a lot of honey left in the hive and they did not go through much of it. This could have been because it was too cold or the honey crystallized.

We surrounded the hive with a good layer of hay and we made plans on coming back next week to check up on it.

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