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Bee Rescue - Can I pour sugar syrup straight onto comb in frame


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Hi everyone

I got some "rescue bees" from a guy a few days ago and relocated them. I think they were a bit neglected and have lots of wax moth throughout. He did treat for varroa though. I dont know a lot about bees but  I think the bees are in trouble - the queen looks OK but there are only about 200 or so bees in the hive covering about 1/3 of a frame. Interestingly they are all on the one plastic foundation frame. There are lots of empty cells on the frame they are on and the rest of the frames have nothing in the cells , so I think they need some food fast. I dont have a hive feeder right now, and given that the bees are all clustered at the top (presume for warmth) they may not appreciate the extra space a top feeding arrangement will make right now especially since there is a cold night predicted tonight. Soooo, I have some extra frames with empty comb on them, and I thought I could  pour on sugar syrup and stick it in there this morning (if it stops raining) as a rescue. I couldn't see anyone else doing that on line, and wondered if I shouldn't do it for some reason. I just want to keep them alive for now. Any comments or help would be appreciated

bee rescue 2.JPG

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Well you can say happy birthday to him again Freeslave, your bees are recovering nicely.    I want to keep them for another couple of weeks, then they are yours.      

Alastair - you are a bloody legend! When all others had given up hope on our little Spartans, and all seemed lost, you arrived on the scene like Gandalf at the Battle of Helms Keep. Thanks so much fro

Oh I am late finding this thread. How are things now Freeslave, the bees still alive?   I have bees at Muriwai. If your queen is still alive you could drop your nuc to one of my apiaries and

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yes you can pour syrup on an empty frame and it will hold in the cells with surface tension. 

 

However you should do this away from the hive so you don't spill it all around and on the ground. The whole rescue sounds a bit late, but maybe if you can obtain a couple or three brood frames from another hive for modest $$ you can rescue the rescue. A lot of chat lately about people with hives wanting to get rid of surplus bees from hives starting to go thermo-nuclear and a possible early swarm season start.

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Great thanks for the response Chris - I poured in about 2 cups of syrup and it held in there OK and put the frame in next to the cluster .. see how we go with that. I will see if I anyone around Muriwai has got some extra brood frames Thanks JJ

 

 

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On 7/09/2020 at 12:03 PM, Freeslave said:

I poured in about 2 cups of syrup and it held in there OK and put the frame in next to the cluster .. see how we go with that. I will see if I anyone around Muriwai has got some extra brood frames Thanks JJ

Sorry Freeslave - But I would be fairly certain that two cups of syrup poured into an empty drawn out frame will initiate robbing

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Oh I am late finding this thread. How are things now Freeslave, the bees still alive?

 

I have bees at Muriwai. If your queen is still alive you could drop your nuc to one of my apiaries and I will fix it for you.

 

We would need to talk on the phone first, about disease and a few things, my phone number is in my profile give me a call.

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On 11/09/2020 at 9:10 AM, Alastair said:

Oh I am late finding this thread. How are things now Freeslave, the bees still alive?

 

I have bees at Muriwai. If your queen is still alive you could drop your nuc to one of my apiaries and I will fix it for you.

 

We would need to talk on the phone first, about disease and a few things, my phone number is in my profile give me a call.

Thanks for replying Alastair - Yes my 9yo son developed an interest in bees so the hives were a present for his birthday last week and I wanted to keep it alive at least until then - so that mission complete. - Didn't want to say "happy birthday son ... by the way your bees are dead" 🙂 

 

But I accept and appreciate that they are a lost cause, and know now that we were a bit naive to take on this lemon. - Having said that the bees were already in the neighbourhood - so I haven't made the world a worse place. And I have learned a bit in the last week (and got very little work done)

 

Moving forward we have done all we can do - registered the hive, joined a local group and club, read some books, watched some you-tube, spent hours with my son watching these little Spartans valiantly holding back the Persian armies at the Hot Gates of Thermopylae, and got a bee-sting on the neck. 

 

But the main thing I would like to do is ask someone to confirm no AFB asap, so I can proceed with a confidence to get a new nuc and rebuild- so thanks for replying there Alastair - I will be in touch asap. Cheers Jeremy

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LOL, that's about exactly it Yesbut.

 

The maestro LOL, Donna, you're my best friend 😆

 

I'm making and selling packages atm so I just tipped part of a package into it a couple days ago, and it was as simple as that.

 

In Freeslaves photo the bees did look about had it, but he did tip a cup or two of sugar straight into the comb which was exactly the right thing to do, it revived those bees and kept them alive until the hive came here. 

 

The queen is a little beauty, even despite the sorry circumstances she had kept on laying eggs bravely, and the poor bees were actually feeding the young larvae, but did not have enough numbers to keep them warm when they got older. But they were able to guard the queen when I tipped the package bees in until they also accepted her, so when I checked today, happy little hive, and those larvae in the pic are from that queen 👍.

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13 hours ago, Alastair said:

I'm making and selling packages atm so I just tipped part of a package into it a couple days ago, and it was as simple as that.

 

I would expect packages to be abundant in your part of the world this year, very few of them came north in March and April.

 

The ones that arrived here at our place are now tucked in for winter, will do one more round of liquid in another week, then strap the lids down till February.

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1 hour ago, Grant said:

 I must admit, I thought it was a gonner

 

And that would have been a fair conclusion. With such hives there is a method to follow. Adding brood is a high risk thing to do because the bees will not be able to care for it. Adding brood with bees may work but bear in mind the brood will have the queen substance of the other queen all over it and risk the introduced bees will see the other queen as an outsider and kill her is higher.

 

So just adding bees is the safest plan, the bees should be left queenless for a minimum of 2 hours first, and then heavily smoked immediately before dumping into the hive which helps.

 

Worst case, if a hive is down to just a queen and a very few bees, the queen can be caged, then a split added to the hive and the caged queen introduced by the candy method.

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22 hours ago, Alastair said:

 

 

The maestro LOL, Donna, you're my best friend 🙂

 

 

 

I would consider that an honour esteemed Sir. 😂

The good thing was that before Freeslave contacted anyone, he had registered as a beekeeper, and owned a copy of Practical Beekeeping in NZ, so he will make an admirable addition to our merry band at Kumeu Beekeeping Group. 

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