Author Topic: Hive Started from Swarm in Late June Won't Build Out  (Read 247 times)

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Offline Alklar20

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Hive Started from Swarm in Late June Won't Build Out
« on: July 19, 2021, 10:19:04 pm »
I have a hive that was started from a swarm that was hived on June 21, I believe. It was hived in 3 medium boxes. I inspected it on July 3 and found that the bees had drawn out about half of the foundation in the top box and about a third of the foundation in the middle box; none was built out in the bottom box. I inspected them again on July 11 and it seemed that they hadn't built out any more foundation since the previous inspection (July 3). I inspected them again today (July 19) and found that they still hadn't built out. It seems that the bees were given too much space, so I removed the bottom box today; the hive is now down to 2 medium boxes. I started feeding them on July 3 and have been doing so ever since. It seems that feeding them is not helping them build out. All the built out comb is towards one side of the hive. The last nectar flow for the year in my location (Northwestern Washington), the blackberry flow, ended not that long ago. Given this, and the fact that feeding them is not helping, how should I get this hive to build out? Should I consolidate all of the frames with comb to one box? Should I keep on feeding them?

Offline iddee

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Re: Hive Started from Swarm in Late June Won't Build Out
« Reply #1 on: July 19, 2021, 10:25:11 pm »
You don't mention egg laying and brood info. How is she laying and does the brood look healthy?
Keep feeding equal mix sugar and water, and watch the brood pattern. Requeen if needed.
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Offline Alklar20

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Re: Hive Started from Swarm in Late June Won't Build Out
« Reply #2 on: July 19, 2021, 10:41:01 pm »
You don't mention egg laying and brood info. How is she laying and does the brood look healthy?
Keep feeding equal mix sugar and water, and watch the brood pattern. Requeen if needed.
I didn't check the queen's laying or the health of the brood today, but the last time I checked (July 11), she seemed to be laying well, although I think I checked only 1 frame. I saw no problems with the brood.

Offline RAST

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Re: Hive Started from Swarm in Late June Won't Build Out
« Reply #3 on: July 20, 2021, 07:59:43 am »
 Only a month old, patience. I have found bees will not build as fast on syrup as on a natural flow and are more prone to backfill brood comb. It is young bees that do the comb building in a normal bee world so for continued rapid comb building you will need a lot of hatching brood which means a good queen, hence Iddee's advice.

Offline yes2matt

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Re: Hive Started from Swarm in Late June Won't Build Out
« Reply #4 on: July 24, 2021, 07:00:29 am »
Is this the same colony that was such a slow start at the beginning of the month?

Do you have some other bees, so that you could start raising a couple new queens? I would start that process asap if so, then if you decide you don't need to requeen, you can cancel the process or share/use the queens.

They also might have brought some disease from wherever they lived before, a late "swarm" might have been an abscond.  I've caught such a swarm, and they were deadout two weeks after I hived them. Sick bees. so I'd be also unidirectional about moving resources to this hive but not from it, until it gets sorted.

Get into the brood nest and take some good pics, and post them here. We all like to look at bees, and there's some experienced eyes around "here".

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Offline Alklar20

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Re: Hive Started from Swarm in Late June Won't Build Out
« Reply #5 on: July 27, 2021, 01:16:39 am »
Is this the same colony that was such a slow start at the beginning of the month?

Do you have some other bees, so that you could start raising a couple new queens? I would start that process asap if so, then if you decide you don't need to requeen, you can cancel the process or share/use the queens.

They also might have brought some disease from wherever they lived before, a late "swarm" might have been an abscond.  I've caught such a swarm, and they were deadout two weeks after I hived them. Sick bees. so I'd be also unidirectional about moving resources to this hive but not from it, until it gets sorted.

Get into the brood nest and take some good pics, and post them here. We all like to look at bees, and there's some experienced eyes around "here".

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"Is this the same colony that was such a slow start at the beginning of the month?" If the colony you're thinking of is the one described in the topic linked below, the colony I described in this topic is a different colony:
https://worldwidebeekeeping.com/forum/index.php?topic=8923.0

"Do you have some other bees, so that you could start raising a couple new queens?" I don't do queen rearing. Also, this hive is in medium boxes while all my other hives are in deeps (excluding supers), so I cannot transfer any frames containing eggs or young larvae to get this hive to raise emergency queens.

I inspected the hive today, and I strongly suspect laying workers. I saw many eggs laid on the sides of cells, I think I saw a cell with 2 eggs, I remember seeing what looked like an undersized drone (as if it hatched out of a worker-sized cell), and I remember seeing what looked like a drone hatching out a worker-sized cell. The was also a spotty brood pattern. I also noticed that the cappings of the capped brood were flecked with a reddish discoloration, and I smelled a sour odor as I pulled one of the brood frames; I'm suspecting these are signs of some kind of disease.

Offline Alklar20

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Re: Hive Started from Swarm in Late June Won't Build Out
« Reply #6 on: July 27, 2021, 01:19:44 am »
You don't mention egg laying and brood info. How is she laying and does the brood look healthy?
Keep feeding equal mix sugar and water, and watch the brood pattern. Requeen if needed.
I inspected the hive today, and I strongly suspect laying workers. I saw many eggs laid on the sides of cells, I think I saw a cell with 2 eggs, I remember seeing what looked like an undersized drone (as if it hatched out of a worker-sized cell), and I remember seeing what looked like a drone hatching out a worker-sized cell. The was also a spotty brood pattern. I also noticed that the cappings of the capped brood were flecked with a reddish discoloration, and I smelled a sour odor as I pulled one of the brood frames; I'm suspecting these are signs of some kind of disease

Offline RAST

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Re: Hive Started from Swarm in Late June Won't Build Out
« Reply #7 on: July 27, 2021, 07:59:00 am »
Judging from afar, your description does sound like laying workers, the sour odor could be fermented honey (do you have small hive beetles in Wa.?). There are some honeys that normally have an odor, or at worst American Foulbrood. Google how to do a rope test for AFB.

Offline Alklar20

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Re: Hive Started from Swarm in Late June Won't Build Out
« Reply #8 on: July 27, 2021, 10:10:20 pm »
Judging from afar, your description does sound like laying workers, the sour odor could be fermented honey (do you have small hive beetles in Wa.?). There are some honeys that normally have an odor, or at worst American Foulbrood. Google how to do a rope test for AFB.
"Do you have small hive beetles in Wa.?" I did a web search and found that there were small hive beetles in Washington. I'm not sure if they're in my specific location, though. I did a full inspection of the hive yesterday and found no signs of small hive beetle infestation.
"Google how to do a rope test for AFB." I know how to do a rope test for AFB. I used a small twig from the ground in place of a matchstick; the test was negative. I also uncapped a few of the cells of capped brood with my hive tool; the pupae looked normal.