Wax on the front of the hive

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Eddie 

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Yesterday when I went to look at my colonies one of them had little bits of wax all over the front of the hive. It looks as if it was put there on purpose (i.e. well stuck) but each bit was only about 1/2 to 1 cm long and about 1 mm high. The wax was randomly spaced all over the front of the hive.

Why would the bees do this? Any ideas?

For information this is a colony that still has all the bees but no queen as they swarmed with a clipped queen and she was lost :(.

Last time I inspected them (1 week ago) I left one meaty sealed QC.

I will try for a photo if I can.
 

Eddie 

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I don't understand.

The wax is on the outside front of the hive in little ridges. I don't want to open the colony as there should be a virgin queen only a few days old.

Is there any reason bees would put wax on the outside of the hive?
 

grizzly 

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Hi Eddie
Looks like you have had the same build up as mine, one of my clipped queens was lost recently, bees still there thankfully.

With regard to your question, absolutely no idea, is it like the bits you sometimes get on top of the frames ?
 

Eddie 

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Yes, that's right just like the bits that usually connect the QE to the frames!

WRT the queen loss:- a story about how NOT to keep bees.

I performed an artificial swarm on one of my two colonies and put a QE below the brood to stop the swarmy queen to stop her from swarming anyway.

The next day I found a swarm on a tree 20 feet from the apiary (I have two colonies). I found the queen on the grass about 5 feet from the colony.

My thoughts were: a) she can't come from the artificially swarmed colony as the old part doesn't have a queen and the swarmed part has a QE at the bottom.

I (wrongly) assumed she had come from the colony that I had not artificially swarmed so I scooped her up and placed her at the entrance and she walked in. The MOMENT she disappeared from view I thought "I should have checked first!". I examined the colony the next day to find her dead and the original queen happily laying.

Lesson 3067 learned...
 

admin 

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Lesson 3068:

When you do a queen clipping session dont be lazy and just grab a frame to put her on as the bees will ball her,causing you to have to dive into the frame and save her.

You then have to put her on a frame that has brood on it so the other bees expect her to be there and she walks around in a calm manner.

Now who would be that stupid to make such a mistake :toetap05:;)
 

gtb 

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I don't understand.

The wax is on the outside front of the hive in little ridges. I don't want to open the colony as there should be a virgin queen only a few days old.

Is there any reason bees would put wax on the outside of the hive?
I expect you had a swarm that left the hive, realized that they didn;t have a queen following, then returned to the hive.

It's not unusual for the 'returning swarm' to beard on the front of the hive and with the swarm's urge to lay down some wax they leave tiny white deposits across the outside face of the hive.

Time to get your swarm control into action.
 

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