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  Sunday, 17 December 2017
  4 Replies
  188 Visits
Hi, I am at a loss about this situation. I went to check on my hives and the strongest hive I had had hundreds of dead bees in the snow at the back of the hive. Obviously they came out of the top vent. I have not opened up to see if the entire hive is dead but I am not too hopeful. Suppose to warm up on Tuesday so maybe I will take a look. Is it possible that there were so many bees that hundreds decided to leave to make more food available to the younger (winter) bees ? I have never seen this happen in the past. This happened in the past few days, after the snow storm. There has been real cold weather so I don’t think it was cleansing flights. My other hives are OK, as far as I can tell. Any advice will be appreciated. Peter.
4 years ago
Good news, hive is still alive. Maybe just too many mouths to feed !!!! Stay tuned.
4 years ago
Glad to hear they are still alive Peter!
4 years ago
I have a colony like this at home. Every day, more dead bees on the snow. It is a combination of two swarms that occupied stacks of comb in my door yard. Both were rather late, one was heavy and packed with bees, the other not so. I combined them.

I figure the dead bees are from either old bees which always perish during the winter, or Nosema disease. I picked up 5 bees from the snow today and looked at their poop under a microscope. Lots of pollen of different types, but no Nosema spores that I could see. So diagnosis is...old bees.
4 years ago
Thanks Mike, I suspected the” big” hive had too many old bees. Glad that you are thinking the same. Hopefully this below zero stuff is over for awhile. Not sure how any hives could survive after such a cold snap, but they do....tough little buggars.
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