Bit of a water issue

Flooding to excess happening. Water level came up so fast overnight with rain on the Sunshine Coast. I rescued these hives but only an inspection over the next few days will show the extent of losses. This was a new site.

That looks a bit traumatic for everyone involved. I hope it works out well

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Hi Alan, that looks heartbreaking. I have one hive in Bli Bli, near the Maroochy River that I don’t expect to see again.

Oh no!

I had a few nucs that I thought were goners last year but the bees found high ground inside the hive and once I replaced the waterlogged/moldy frames they were ok - hopefully the same is true for you!


Hi Jeff. I was tentatively planning to do a trip up again today but the motorway seems to be closed

Hi Al, apparently my hive is nestled in a tree. I’ll retrieve it after the river level drops. The bees are outside of it, but I’m not worried about losing that colony because they are cranky bees (pun intended). It looks like Brisbane & the Gold Coast is copping it bad at the moment, not to mention west of Brisbane.

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It was ‘funny’ when I floated each hive out in a plastic trolley. Could really move the double one so put a few more bricks under it. Once the entrance was uncovered they flew out en mass and unfortunately I forgotten my veil. So I copped a few stings and later that day I found an engorged leech that’d dropped off my foot. I wonder if the queen and other bees survived?

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I picked up my hive yesterday, about 50 meters from it’s original site, in the scrub, with an overwhelming odor of dead bees, with blow flies hanging around it. It was going to be a contest between blow flies & hive beetles. I left quite a few tiny hive beetle larvae on the ground. First thing this morning, before breakfast I got into the frames to clean up before the beetle larvae got to a reasonable size, before escaping into my soil. The photos tell the story.


I think in a contest between hive beetles & blow flies, the hive beetles certainly got off to a good start.

Anyway a huge downpour cleaned up the frames & boxes etc., beautifully for me, ready for fresh foundation.

PS There was a lot of brood in this hive that beetles hadn’t really got started on, a lot of brood. One can only imaging how many beetles can be produced out of one hive, if left unchecked. That comb got dealt with later on that day.

Beetles and their grubs are disheartening to see to see when you know they’ve taken over.
Been back a couple of times to the flooded site and found this morning two of the five hives slimed out. One was the brood and super that I couldn’t get out of the flooded area. First time I checked the hives I spent about 3.5 hrs in the humid weather in the sun. I was a soggy mess. But as I was cleaning up to go, there came that familiar sound of a swarm. So I quickly put my suit on and proceeded to capture that one.
I don’t think the queen was in a fit condition to fly as the swarm ended only about three metres away. But I still feel a little fortunate as I’ve read in different forums of beekeepers losing 20+ hives. And I cannot forget the hundreds of hives lost during the recent catastrophic fires.

Well done in capturing the swarm Al. The colony may have absconded from a flooded hive.

I agree it’s disheartening to see all the beetle grubs. I’m amazed & reminded of how quickly they grow, because on the afternoon I picked the hive up the grubs were only tiny. By the time Wilma took the photos, early the next morning, they looked quite big in comparison.

Jeff how big do the larvae grow before they migrate off to the soil in normal conditions? I had three boxes absolutely chockers with the slimy little mongrels. I water blasted them out on the front driveway trying hard to blast them onto the road. They die there in the heat. But a few obviously escape to the ground. Would love the local magpies to come around when I do it. They might think of me as their friend.

Hi Al, I’m guessing a 1/2" long & fat. If the grubs are tiny when the food runs out, they turn into tiny beetles, that don’t do too well at reproducing. Therefore if tiny grubs escape to ground, it’s not so bad because they most likely wont be able to reproduce. That’s why I went to pick that hive up when I did because I didn’t want the grubs, that I fully expected to be present, to get too big.

This hive was from a topic I created a couple of years ago, Wax Moth AND SHBs in Abandoned (by the owner) Hive .
The previous owner was flood conscious, therefore the hives were on a very high stand. However he wasn’t good at managing his hives. I couldn’t use the high stand, which is still there & shows a water mark just below the rail that supports the hives. Maybe I could have used it if the colony wasn’t so savage. Hindsight is a wonderful thing. Anyway I wont set the hive up there again.