Hive being hammered by wasp

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House Bee
Mar 20, 2009
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Checking my hives yesterday, 2 are doing good plenty of stores (one on double brood by accident)whilst the third hive is being hammered by wasp, in front of the hive is piled high in wasp bodies.
Inside the hive is about 3 to 4 frames of bees and the queen was spotted, very little stores spread out over the hive and there is evidence of food going in. was going to start feeding syrup today but worried that the wasp are going to wipe them out, i fitted mouse guards a couple of weeks back and closed them down to a couple of bee holes because of the wasp problem, don't know what else i can do.

Very late in the season to be suffering from wasp attack and having time for the colony to gain enough strenth for the winter.

The simple answer is more bees. If you have enough hatching brood in your other hives to strengthen the colony, that would be a good move. But and a big BUT; halfway through October is not the best time to be messing around with a weak colony. Your better bet may probably to cut your losses and unite with another or the other colonies.

The one redeeming fact from your post is that the wasps seem to be repelled or killed.

Your decision on the ground might be to install the weak colony in a well insulated nucleus hive and nurse it through the winter. We don't know how long the season can continue and how severe the winter might be.

My alternative options for you, as I see them. Your decision which way to go.

Regards, RAB
If you have another site you could also try moving them after putting them in a nuc, if they are really that weak they will fit into 5 frames. You could also see if you can take a frame of stores from another colony or ideally more than one colony, but not so to weaken these donors. Go for colonies that perhaps still have a super of stores, if you have any like that. Alternatively, you could try feeding with neat honey (your own, not from the supermarket) but in this case you should really move them to an isolated site to avoid robbing.

I would be reluctant to unite as that will simply mean the loss of a queen which is all that will happen if the colony stays together but does not survive the winter. Leaving tham as they are gives them a chance. If your other colonies are strong they don't need the extra bees which are almost certainly going to die soon anyway to be replaced by the over-wintering ones.
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