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Ouarda 

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Hi guys had a huge setback at the weekend due to that nasty black and yellow bandit, the wasp :mad::smash::smash:

My poor little swarm has been really badly attacked and I think they killed the queen and killed loads of the new grubs. As the swam was only little to start this has really done loads of damage and I don't think they will survive the winter at this rate. I really don't know what to do for them this is my only colony so no option to combine. I'm gutted.

I did track down the wasp nest and enjoyed an evening bonfire :biggrinjester::biggrinjester:, but the damage has already been done.

Any advice would be much appreciated.
 

Polyanwood 

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Well done for finishing off the wasps.

Recommend you move the nuc a least a mile away if you can. Also reduce the entrance to one bee space so that they can defend it better. Be very careful about feeding. Don't spill syrup and if they don't need it urgently, stop feeding for a while so that the colony is less attractive to wasps.

Good Luck
 

Ouarda 

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Done all you suggested yesterday but moving hive is not an option.

When I opened the hive yesterday abbout 20 wasps exited out the top of the hive, no sign of wasps today though so my little bonfire seems to have done the trick.:hurray:

What was really annoying is the entrance was closed right down to about 2inches, how will I get them through the winter?
 

oliver90owner 

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If the wasps had got to the stage of removing larvae there is likely little left in the way of stores and likely little left in the way of a colony.

Close the entrance to the minimum, feed as necessary and cross fingers and toes. No point in moving the colony if the attackers have been removed. Most likely they would be moved to within easy striking distance of another wasp hazard.

Regards, RAB
 
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If you have lost the queen things are looking bad as you won't have a laying queen for about 4 weeks at best, assuming there were eggs/young larva left by the wasps from which the bees can raise a new queen. Queens do get mated in September but this is a risk I wouldn't like to take but unless you can buy or find another queen you don't have much option but to take the chance.
 

Ouarda 

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Thanks for the replies :)

I know even with another queen it will be hard for them to get through the winter as they are reduced to only a couple of frames of bees.

I don't know what the wasp situation is like in the UK but it's a record year for them here, everybody is complaining about them.
 

Polyanwood 

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What was really annoying is the entrance was closed right down to about 2inches
I was confused by this. If I had a colony under attack I would want an entrance of 1-2 cms, not 2 inches. They can't defend 2 inches if they are a small colony.
 
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I wouldn't give up on them if they are your only colony. I would put them in a poly nuc with a new queen if you can get one. They should survive - though you may have to feed them fondant throughout the winter.
 

Ouarda 

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I did try closing it right down but the bees were really upset by it, so I opened it up a bit for them, won't do that again
 

admin 

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Can you get hold of a mated queen over the next couple of days ?
 

oliver90owner 

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I know even with another queen...

The queen is quite likely still to be there. You have only said 'you think' thus far.

First you need to ascertain the state of the colony - any young larvae or eggs, or indeed a queen. If no queen, it is up to you what you do with such a weak colony at this time of the year. They are now even more susceptible to a further wasp attack.

Regards, RAB
 

kazmcc 

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What do you mean that the bees didn't like it when you closed down the entrance to 1-2 cms? Did they crowd? Or were they suddenly defensive? When we took our entrance down, it took them a while to get used to having to queue. They sort of crowded together over the new entrance, but it was only because they were all trying to get in. They got used to it pretty quickly though.

Are you sure the queen has gone? If you are new ( like me :D ) it can be a bit stressful when something goes the shape of the pear, so have a good look.

I really hope things will be ok. Good luck.

PS Is there no-one you can combine with, then agree that you get a new colony from their bees when the time is right? Just a thought if all else fails :)
 

Ouarda 

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Hi Guys,

Many thanks for all the supportive posts and PM's I'm feeling much better about things now, still not got hold of a new queen but am off to see a man about a bee tomorrow lunchtime. :)

I sorted out the bees being upset with blocking off the entrance and they seem to be happier now. I used the top of a frame so they have 2 single bee sized entrances and this seemed to keep them happy. I never knew you could use the top of a frame as an entrance block.:sifone:

I also got a call from the local Beek group to say I can call the secretary as he's down sizing and might be able to help.

I'm now a very happy bunny bee-smilliebee-smillie
 

taff.. 

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I had a nuc that got robbed blind by wasps last year, they survived the winter but come spring time there wasn't enough bees to keep any brood warm so they didn't expand at all :(

I was gratefull for having the queen in May as I landed up using her to replace one that I accidentally killed/died in a queen cage :banghead:
 

BabyBee 

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i checked my bees yesterday and saw 2 wasps straight away, and lots of earwigs - should i be worries? (killed earwigs and wasps instantly).
 

oliver90owner 

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Wasps In the hive? Yes. Outside the hive? Not really - up to you, can if you want to, or if you are the worrying type.....

Earwigs no bother, just a nuisance, if you let them.

RAB
 

Cazza 

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i checked my bees yesterday and saw 2 wasps straight away, and lots of earwigs - should i be worries? (killed earwigs and wasps instantly).
Try to leave the earwigs alone, they should do no harm.
Cazza
 

dc197 

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You mentioned that you saw wasps when you opened the top. Could there be a chance that the wasps are entering the hive via a hole other than the entrance hole? A gap upstairs?
 

BabyBee 

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not sure about one of them as it was my neighbour saw that one (we did hive inspection together as i have hurt my back and didnt know if i could bend down), the other one was deffo inside the BB beside the frames.

andy advice gladly recieved please.....

incidentally, my bees look really small ones - compared to my neighbours....does that mean anything? (and i do knwo the difference between drones and workers)
 

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