Honey 1 – Inspection “Can organic Beekeeping work in this hive?”

Removed the roof and noticed some dampness at some of the corners of the roof, will need to investigate this further.

I inspected both brood boxes and it is evident that the hive is rather infested with Varroa Mites. I noted some bees with Deformed Wings and even spotted some mites on Bees. So this matches the high drop count recorded a couple of weeks back.

This is sad to see and we were hoping the Sugar Shaking was going to be enough to get them through the winter. We need to seek consul with other beekeepers and try to work out what we can do about this situation. I would rather avoid using chemicals but we may have no choice to save these bees.

I did another sugar shake and noticed a high number of mites were ejected from the hive.

The bees also don’t have that much brood and seemed to have moved operations to the upper brood box.

Removed the drone brood in the Drone Management frame, will inspect these later on to see how many mites we can find.

The one and only ¾ super is still not finished and I suspect it won’t be, before we need to shut the hive down for winter. Which is fast approaching with Day Light Saving ending in New Zealand this morning? Colder weather is on its way to our Bee yard.

I didn’t spot the Queen but did spot some week old lava, so she was around a week or so ago. The hive is pretty full, so it’s not surprising that we couldn’t spot her today.

I spotted two drones sitting on the comb not moving and they were dead? Never seen that before…

Did notice around thirty dead bees below the entrance, I suspect this is the normal pre winter die off and nothing unusual.

Made a mistake in the work shop as well, left a frame of honey accessible to the bees and left the door open, so when I returned it was of course full of bees. I managed to rescue the frame and the bees stopped visiting for a free lunch.

So all in all its sad that the mites seem to winning the battle in this hive, what can we do? Help!!!

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About Gary Fawcett

Gary enjoys designing new kiwimana products which we sell through our on-line shop. He is passionate about saving the Bees and encouraging urban beekeeping. Gary loves to write about issues that affect the Bees and our environment. He is also into tramping/walking in the beautiful New Zealand bush.

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2 Responses to Honey 1 – Inspection “Can organic Beekeeping work in this hive?”

  1. Hey! Sounds like you have a problem on your hands! Have you fixed it yet, and if so, what did you do? I’m really curious!

    • Gary says:

      Hi, Well we lost that hive and two others since. We have since bought some Apilife Var, and will use that to treat our future bees. We need to work out a 12 months varroa plan and stick to it.

      Beekeeping with Varroa mites is a whole different world these days, so leaving the bees to work it out isn’t working. You need to treat with something if you want to keep your bees alive.

      Thanks…Gary

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