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Collapsed Hive - Post Maintenance

Hi Everyone!

While there’s lots of info on how to take care of your active hive I don’t see much about what to do when your hive collapses (I’m still trying to figure out why).

Two questions:

What do you do with the flowhive frames? I would imagine you remove and clean (provide cleaning details please). Or do you simply store and wait for the next season and let the new colony do the work?

What do you do with the BroodBox frames? This is interesting to me. I think I read that you can re-use the frames if you freeze them to ensure that they are disease free. My brood frames are wood frames with plastic inserts which provide the outline of the honeycomb for the bees to use.

I’ll provide pictures if requested. Thank you in advance for the tips!

Hi Andrew,

I’m really sorry to hear about your bees, that’s terrible.

What happens next really depends on what caused your hive to collapse (by this I’m assuming you mean your bees died? But how will be very relevant).

Further information and photos will help, so will stay tuned for further updates from you in order to provide some suggestions.

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I agree with @Freebee2, any advise would be very dependent on the reason the hive collapsed. There is instantly a few strong possible causes like a dearth, varroa and heat so I would advise you getting some help if you don’t know the cause so that you will make the best move forward.
Cheers

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I had the pleasure of dealing with a collapsed hive yesterday although I think it may be different to what you are referring to, small hive beetle over-ran a very strong hive and slimed it out. The bees weren’t faraway, they absconded 30 metres up a tree and refused to come down. They only way to deal with the mess was to boil all the timber, wax, brood and honey, its not much fun.

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Hey @astack sorry to hear about your colony :frowning:

I’m not familiar with your seasonal rhythms where you live, and my question is related. Was there a strong nectar flow on, with a strong colony population prior to the collapse? …or possibly not, meaning that the Flow super was a bit too much space for your bees to govern. I don’t want to jump to conclusions though, and pics would be very helpful too :thinking:

Depends on the condition. If the hive collapse was not due to any beetle bug or disease just rinse out in hot… not boiling water, allow to dry then store them with ventilation to stop mildew and use mesh to keep the wax moths out. If it was due to any beetle bug or disease thtat’s out of my depth as in WA all we have to contend with is wax moth.

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Look for posts from @Dawn_SD. She’s posted very useful comments that relate to this on other threads. She’s also in CA from memory.

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boiling down a hive is pretty much the exact opposite of fun. That smell! yech :nauseated_face: :face_vomiting: :sneezing_face:. I can’t bring myself to waste the wax and frames but part of me wants to just burn the lot. BUT: this is the job where a solar wax melter really pays for itself. Just lay the combs inside come back in 35 minutes and lift out the wood frame- a quick wipe with a rag and they’re done- they are also now impregnated with nice smelling bees wax… … the cocoons etc go straight to the compost and you have the wax. No muss no fuss. Only you do need a good sunny day.

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