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UPDATE (6/29/04):
Been watching the third colony slowly disappear. Each day when I'd bring syrup, I'd see fewer and fewer bees. Eventually, they stopped drawing out cells. Never did see any brood. Now there are no bees. What a disappointment. All that money down the drain. Our only hope now is to get called for a swarm. Otherwise, I guess we'll wait and risk some more money next year.

ORIGINAL POST:
Bought and assembled three new hives this winter.
Ordered three 3# package bees ($172) back in February. They shipped three weeks late from Alabama. Wasn't sure I was going to get them at all.
They arrived and were installed the day before Mother's Day. They were out of shipping syrup when they arrived.
One colony died out or absconded the first week.
Second colony died out today.
Third colony going strong. Didn't see any brood this evening, but the bees are drawing out the cells on two facing sides of foundation.
This colony is going through about one quart of sugar syrup a day now.
 
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Zack said:
Any Idea why you lost the second hive?
We're new to beekeeping so this is just a guess. I suspect they became queenless for some reason and slowly died off or migrated over to the third colony. The third colony has always been the strong one.
 

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Oops! Forgot to log in.
The above post is mine.
 
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Steve said:
Bought and assembled three new hives this winter.
Ordered three 3# package bees ($172) back in February. They shipped three weeks late from Alabama. Wasn't sure I was going to get them at all.
They arrived and were installed the day before Mother's Day. They were out of shipping syrup when they arrived.
One colony died out or absconded the first week.
Second colony died out today.
Third colony going strong. Didn't see any brood this evening, but the bees are drawing out the cells on two facing sides of foundation.
This colony is going through about one quart of sugar syrup a day now.
hello steve I am olso new to bee keeping, done everything by the book and expert advice. but those bees have a mind of their own mine have swarmed twice this month despite doing all the swarm conrolling methods If they want to go I am convinced they will go.we recovered the first swarm put it into a new hive with all the trimmings went home next morning the hive was empty they had took of again,the last time they swarmed we just let them take of and watched them fly into the horizan pesky bees I only have one hive but practice will make perfect for the bees not me..
 

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are your bees too constricted in the hive? this would stimulate them to swarm. I would recommend two deep hive bodies for the brood section of the hive, if you don't have this already. also, make sure that the bees aren't honeybound. if there is honey all around the brood boxes, they could be choking themselves in terms of brood rearing, which would stimulate a hive to swarm. you can solve this problem by replacing some frames of honey with foundation, and hanging them up for the bees to rob out between nectar flows. they will then store this honey up in the supers, which will allow them to use the brood boxes for brood rearing. Also, if your bees run out of super space, they will feel confined and swarm as well. of course, you may also just have a swarmy strain of bees. who knows for sure???

justgojumpit
 

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