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Dead and dying bees around hive

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Ulsterfry 

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Today I returned from work and went to look at the bees flying around the hive. About 100 were flying in and out, pollen laden. Great I thought. Then ... horror of horrors.. on looking on the grass around the base of the hive there were about 150 to 200 bees in various states of death/near death, some clumped together. A proportion of those bees were still carrying pollen and I have concluded that perhaps they have been harvesting where someone has been using pesticide.

This is a nuc that I installed 2 weeks ago in the new hive, I inspected it last weekend and it had plenty of nectar and pollen and larvae visible, and had grown considerably in numbers, although with 4 frames of foundation left to occupy. I have also been giving them syrup with a contact feeder. Up till today I detected only about 6 dead bees on the grass beside the hive.

Any thoughts/ suggestions would be appreciated.
 

mbc 

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possibly paralasis - whats your varroa situation ? bee paralasis can spread quite quickly if the varroa population is big enough to be an effective vector for the causative virus
 

Poly Hive 

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As MBC says but also a keen gardener might have been spraying.

PH
 

daytonadean 

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There was a lot of rape spraying going on today, they are spraying insecticide at the moment follow up spraying in three weeks.....
 

Ulsterfry 

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I have recently checked the varroa level.... it's currently low... so I suspect spraying myself. One question though, if the bees that were affected by the spray ( if it were that) had delivered pollen/nectar before expiring into the hive... will that affect the brood?

Thanks for your responses so far.. much appreciated.
 

oliver90owner 

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Doubt they have, but why should it be considered? KISS principle in operation here, I would think.

RAB
 

Haughton Honey 

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Lots of Commercial hives.......
Have you considered acarine? bee paralasis is also a linked with a high acarine burden in the hive.

I thought that since the emergence of varroa and the various treatments that are used to combat it, that acarine was not that common nowadays?
 

tkwinston4 

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My bees were poisoned last year and it was when the bee inspector was calling. She confirmed that because their tongues were out they had been poisoned. Are their tongues out?
We suspected the National Trust because they had been coppicing Laurel in the area and had been spraying the stumps. Of course they denied it.
 

Ulsterfry 

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I'm sorry to say that I didn't inspect them so closely as to look at their tongues.... but I cleared all the dead last night and as of 2pm today ther are no further bodies... and the bees are flying as normal. I'll cross my fingers now!!
 

birchdale 

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Maybe they didn't have enough room to store the stores. Mine have been soooooooooo slow to build wax this year - cold weather?
 

snoop 

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Same thing happened to mine last Friday , they sprayed a 20 acre filed of wheat next door to me ,
 

roche 

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Then ... horror of horrors.. on looking on the grass around the base of the hive there were about 150 to 200 bees in various states of death/near death, some clumped together. A proportion of those bees were still carrying pollen and I have concluded that perhaps they have been harvesting where someone has been using pesticide.

This is a nuc that I installed 2 weeks ago in the new hive, I inspected it last weekend and it had plenty of nectar and pollen and larvae visible, and had grown considerably in numbers, although with 4 frames of foundation left to occupy. I have also been giving them syrup with a contact feeder. Up till today I detected only about 6 dead bees on the grass beside the hive.

Any thoughts/ suggestions would be appreciated.
I know it was a nuc, but perhaps the dead bees were part of a small swarm? Or a queenless cast? It's possible there were two queens in the nuc.
 

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