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Health of Natural Hive in my Garden

Good day.

As introduction, I am simply an urban dweller with a natural bee hive in my garden. But since I do understand the importance of bees and believe bees are endangered, I have left them undisturbed for about three years now.

I am worried about the hive’s health though. I have been seeing larvae crawling on the outside of the hive. I really know nothing of bees yet and am not sure if that is normal or if it is perhaps even fly larvae feeding on the hive. The hive had a huge population but now I do not see many bees anymore and it is still quite hot here but nearing end of Summer.

To top it all off, my 3.5 year old boy went and threw sand in what I consider to be the main entrance to the hive. I would have vacuumed the sand out but I had just been burgled of my vacuum cleaner.

The opening edges of the hive have also become dark and shiny. Not sure if that is normal or a bad sign.

It is night time now and will attach some picks as best I can and take some more tomorrow.

I would like to learn more and hope to assist the hive in recovery if needed. And as a bonus I would like to learn how to harvest some honey as well. But their health is my primary concern for now.

Do you if that was a feral honeybee hive or some other sort of bee? Those look like small hive beetle larvae and maybe the hive has slimed out and the bees have swarmed and/or absconded.

I really know nothing about bees at this stage. They looked like normal honey bees to me. I will take a photo in the morning, there are still some bees present during the day.

It doesn’t look like hive beetle to me, It looks more like black soldier fly larvae, or the larvae of some other fly. It looks like the hive if devastated by them because you can see a lot more inside those gaps after zooming in on the photo.

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Doesn’t look good to me either, maybe your son was acting on a similar assessment and wanted to show his disapproval of the invaders! It’s considerate of you to leave the colony undisturbed, but since it’s mostly likely now a source of pests, it would be good to have it cleared out.


Thank you for the replies. They have never caused any issue pest-wise which is why I never bothered to have them removed.

So do you believe that nothing can be done to help restore the hive to it’s former glory? The hive also smells quite sweet. Perhaps a lot of honey present?

Here’s the pic for identification of the bees. In my lack of knowledge these are our local standard honey bees.