Hi all. I’m new here and to bee keeping. Can anyone tell me what is going on in my hive? I have a frame with some large cells with partially developed larvae coming out. Thanks for any help
Those large cells are drone cells & what might have happened is the comb might have been joined to the adjacent frame, or the side wall, depending on the location of the frame in the hive. As you removed the frame to inspect, you could have torn the cap & bottom part of the cell wall away from the adjoining frame, or wall, whichever the case may be, leaving no support for the larvae/pupae, causing it to drop out.
Are hive beetles in Iowa? The reason why I ask is because that kind of situation can lead to hive beetle problems.
Do you find that the colony will build more burr comb with drone cells if they don’t have a designated place to raise the number of drones that they want? I have found much less burr comb in my colonies that I have given a single foundationless comb (as an outer frame) to. Also can be used for varroa monitoring and removal, which is fortunately not something that you’ve had to consider yet.
Do you think that in temperate climates the bees have more cyclical behavior and drone rearing and swarming than in tropical areas?
Do your bees burst with activity and drone rearing in the spring like strong colonies do in temperate climates?
What you said makes perfect sense. I had not thought about the fact that it probably tore when I pulled out the frame. Thanks for the info.
We just got in to bee keeping this spring, so there is a lot to learn. I’m not sure if there are hive beetles here yet. However, I have noticed that the ants seem to gravitate towards the hive.
Hi Alok, no my bees don’t build more burr comb without a designated frame purely for drones. They put drone comb wherever they can within the wax foundation frames I provide. I like the idea of a single frame for drone brood as a means of monitoring varroa mites, which I’ll use myself if mites do turn up down here.
No to your second question. Bees in my sub-tropical zone raise a LOT of drones & want to swarm, just as much as bees in temperate zones. Bees are bees, so therefore they want to reproduce & multiply just the same, wherever they are. My area has an abundance of pollen & nectar, so therefore the bees will take advantage of those resources.
Yes to the last question. In fact, sometimes it starts a month after the shortest day, depending on the colony, which is 5-6 weeks before our winter officially finishes.