think this cant be be normal????

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justme 

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Hi all, Hope you had a great Christmas, Happy new year to you all and your bees.

Checked my out apiary yesterday, no thermometer with me but ours at home said 10.5 degrees, certainly no colder than that at out apiary possibly warmer.

2 hives,
Hive, 1, Italians, Cornish bred from Hawiian stock. 2 OSB, at least 16 frames of ivy honey/thymolised ambrosia (Hivemakers recipe). Varroa treated also with Hivemakers varroa recipe.
both boxes were full of bees/stores early November.

Yesterday, outside 2-300 young bees (furry thoraxs) lethargic on buttercup leaves and twigs etc outside front of the hive. Mainly in pairs upto about 6 in a group. Mostly nose to nose.
Although plenty of water around now i wondered if they may be thirsty and put a container of not too clean water down for them with reeds as floaters.

Today, same bees appear to be in similar places, seemed comatose, some dead. I blowed gently on them and most seemed to stir but that was all.

Hive 2. Daughter queen of hive 1, 1 OSB box, same treatments as hive 1. All seems ok.

Fresh cappings crumbs under both hives.
Not OA'd yet.

Please, can anyone tell me whats gone wrong or am is it me thats got the wrong end of the stick. They are furry bees though so taht means they're young not old doesnt it?

Thanks for looking, Di.
 

justme 

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Photos added

Some photos added, may help, some blurred though, apologies:.)
 

cstroud 

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Hi,
well i'd say they're on a water collecting/ cleansing trip. But can't explain their 'sluggish' behaviour. Water is needed in the winter months to make solid food solube enough to eat, any day now i'm expecting my bees to be out fetching water, after some weeks cooped up.

Chris
 

chrismcd 

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Hi Justme,

I looked after a hive of "Italian" bees last winter and was amazed by how active they were on all but the coldest days.

I have a feeling that they always had some brood on the go and they got through huge amounts of fondant.

So, I could well believe that you have young bees and that they are daft enough to be outside in the middle of winter.

If it is any reassurance the hive I was looking after did very well and got off to a very early start in the spring.
 

Polyanwood 

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I can't see signs of varroa on them. It looks like one or two might have unhinged their wings (not good if true) , but hard to tell from photos.

Perhaps it was warmer than you thought and they were collecting water?

Not very usual to see what you report. Perhaps one of the most experienced beekeepers will comment.
 

Moggs 

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Is it me or do they look very much like drones? Any self-respecting drone should be, ummm 'not' at this time of year! My, what big eyes they have...
 

Hombre 

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Well spotted Moggs, it does look that way and explains a thing or two.

The party is over fellahs . . . :willy_nilly: :willy_nilly: :willy_nilly:
 

Moggs 

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Thanks H. DLQ? Non productive and most unwelcome drones kicked out by remaining waking workers?
 

eddiespangle 

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What sort of mouse guard have you been using, have you recently removed it? Were the drones ‘stuck’ behind it?
 

justme 

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Ahhhh! please say not really:.)DLQ? Still doesnt occur to me that they are drones, at least not all.

If they are though then a bit of an issue this time of the year, although fairly warm and could reunite, getting rid of DLQ would be a non starter (or not?).

Thanks Cstroud, Chrismcd & Polyanwood for your comments.

Will have another look today.

Happy New Year:.)
 

justme 

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What sort of mouse guard have you been using, have you recently removed it? Were the drones ‘stuck’ behind it?
Hi Eddiespangle. Shallow entrance, no mouseguard required. These bees were out on the first warm day we've had since the last coldish spell.
 

Meg 

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Go check out some other close ups of bees folks.

Don't look like drones to me - too pointy at back end and eyes not big enough and touching significantly in the middle.

I know the bees look fluffy and so young, but this is winter remember - they haven't been doing anything to lose those hairs, so perhaps they are just old and past it?

As long as the colony has enough left and plenty of stores then I don't think youo have anything too much to worry about.

Meg
 

Moggs 

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Well there you are then! Mandatory half dozen differing opinions. What more could you possibly want from a beekeeping forum? Beekeepers true-to-form. :)
 

justme 

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Thanks all:.)
Just had another look, not drones, at least most of them are/were not. Remains only of most of them left and no new ones.

Keeping fingers crossed.

Thanks Meg, funny how easy it is to doubt things when they are not right in front of us any more, didn't look like drones in real life but then suggestions........... and doubt sets in:.)
 

Moggs 

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Hi Justme - apologies if you didn't enjoy for your little walk up the garden path :redface:
 

marc 

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These aren't drones. After a long time of confinement the late-born young winterbees didn't have the opportunity to orientate yet and couldn't refind the entry by their first flight. Also the temperature wasn't high enough to let them try several times. You're all lucky to see your bees fly, for us it's our 28th day of snow in east-belgium (-3/1°C)
 

Dishmop 

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Drones' eyes are head sized.
 

justme 

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Hi Justme - apologies if you didn't enjoy for your little walk up the garden path :redface:
Hi moggs:.) walk was fine, just brain confuddled:.) marc n dishmop, thanks:.)
 
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tidymeup 

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If the bees are just walking and not able to fly and clustering on the floor I would say it's acrine. This is also assuming that they have no visible signs of varroa.

Supposedly a small infestation when the bees are confined can spread through out them all.

I struggled for ages with this until I had some tested which is pretty simple to do.

Although treating with thymol as you have done should have knocked that on the head.

I took a big sample home and warmed them up and fed them at home and they seemed to be perfectly fine apart from the fact that they could not fly.

Just a thought.
 

Dishmop 

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If the bees are just walking and not able to fly and clustering on the floor I would say it's acrine. This is also assuming that they have no visible signs of varroa.
not able to fly

Clustering on the floor?

?????????????????????????
 

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