Bad News Part 2
It is Saturday 30 January and I popped back up to the apiary this pm to slap on another couple of food packs and to recheck the entrances. I still had some to go when the rain came on yesterday.
I did the hives belonging to Jonathan my bee buddy who has some of his in my apiary, May I recommend to all bee keepers the concept of a bee buddy. You can help each other with gear in times of emergency, deputise for each other during holidays etc, assist each other with heavy lifting.... and lets face it beekeeping is about heavy lifting!
I know I said the next post would be about swarms but that is on hold.... this is more important at this time !
So having fed bees the fondant packs, checked the entrances I went over to the dead hive to carry out the last rights as it were.
The last rights / post mortem.....I opened up the hive, brushed off all the dead bees on to the ground... birds and hedgehogs will probably clean them up. and inspected the remains of the cluster.
The bottom brood chamber was clean of food apart from some pollen, and my statement yesterday about them not moving from the queen and brood was totally correct.
As you can see in the above picture there is capped brood, Some cells of pollen and bees dead head first in... a classic starvation image
A close up....
and just above them frames of honey and still liquid nectar.
Their luck just ran out.
So having done the post mortem I closed the hive up tightly so no other bees can get in and rob it out and will bring it home in a few days for cleaning and sterilisation. There was evidence of a small outbreak of dysentery on some frames but minor.... however I don't want that in the apiary so they will all go into the steamer for cleaning and recovery.
So now I will continue keep my eyes on the remaining 22 hives and fingers crossed they will flourish as we head to spring.
Happy Bee keeping