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New hive with several issues all at once

This is our first year with bees so we are still quite unfamiliar with everything. Our flow arrived quite late in the season, but we were able to get a nuke that a local beekeeper put together for us. We transplanted it to our hive at the beginning of June.
Up until this week everything seemed to be going smoothly. Almost suspiciously so. They filled out the additional 3 frames in the brood box and have started filling the flow frames.

Last week it was exceptionally hot for several days which was followed by intense rain for several more days.

After the rain we started to notice a lot of dead bees outside of the hive. It looks like several layers of bees.
On the inside of the hive it still appears to be quite populated, but there is a section of the hive that is empty and looks really frail. With a few dead bees hanging off the comb.

There was a bee that looked brighter than the others on one of the frames. Another bee grabbed it and zoomed away.

The other issue is that it looks like there are queen cells being built. Last Wednesday there were lots of new eggs that had been laid. I didn’t look today though to see if there were any new eggs. What’s the best way to determine if they’re going to swarm or if the queen has died?

The first question that occured to me was do they have enough stores? I know its middle of summer, but local conditions of nectar dearth, poor weather and a hive full of bees can result in them running out of stores very quickly.

Secondly, is there any royal jelly in the queen cups? For me they are still at the play cup stage (though they dont look new) but if they were loading them with royal jelly i would get concerned.

Finally, and most importantly, I think; in the second photo there seems to be a residue in several of the empty frames rowards the bottom of the screen. I cant see clearly what it is but it does appear that you have had larval deaths before capping. If so, there could be disease activity such as European foul brood, sacbrood or chalkbrood. Or it might just be the effects of stress.
You mentioned that there were lots of eggs a week ago, Have they turned into healthy larvae?

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I think they are starving. May need feeding sugar syrup.

I believe they have enough stores. The outside frames are full and additionally we have been feeding them sugar syrup daily since we got them late in the season. We use a 32 oz mason jar that is empty every morning. Do we need to be feeding more than this? We made the mistake of putting the flow frames on top too early so now we have sugar honey in the flow :weary:, but they also have several frames full there.

I will check this evening to see if there is any royal jelly in the cups. I did not notice the queen cups until yesterday, so I am not sure when they started making them. They definitely were not noticeable last week.

I will also check to see if there is anything residual in the comb. I didn’t notice any. There are definitely lots hatching as well as lots various stages of larvae visible. At which point in larvae development are they supposed to cap it? Are there any distinctive characteristics to identify if it is disease activity vs stress?

I brightened up the shadows on the picture to show the lower cells. I think that what looked like residue may just be a reflection.

Did you read any books or indeed any information about the life cycle of bees before you decided you had to have them?

Also some of the bees in the photo appear to have been drowned in something, is your feeder jar perhaps just leaking into the hive because a 32oz jar is a lot to have been consumed in one night.

You certainly had a laying queen recently but I’m concerned that there is so little bees on the frames and also that it is very likely that the super was put on the hive too early. The second pic shows a frame no yet built out completely. None of the pics show the classic top corners with capped honey so I would continue feeding and remove the Flow Super till maybe as late as next Spring, or at least till there is honey stores in the brood area.
Cheers

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I think Stevo is onto something when he asks about leaking of the feeder- those two bees int he first image look like they have drowned in sugar syrup? There is no capped honey visible in any of your photos- but if there are indeed frames with lots of capped honey and/or sugar syrup then there is no need to fee at this stage.More photos would help- there really are not many bees visible on the frames- did you shake them off before you took the photos? I like to see a good ‘bee to comb’ ratio- where every face of every frame has a good solid covering of bees on it.

I would agree with Stevo that this seems to be your underlying problem. It you have been feeding a liter of syrup every night since the beginning of June, and the feeder is empty each day, you should ask yourself where has it gone. I dont know the details of your climate but there should normally be no need to feed in summer.
Even if the bees had been consuming this amount of feed the hive should be full to the gunnells with nectar and honey. Its not, so I agree the syrup has been leaking out.
Leaking syrup drowns bees but can also seriously affect the temperature/humidity balance in the hive, stressing the bees and leaving them susceptible to disease.
Syrup leaking out of the hive is also an open invitationfor the hive to be attacked and robbbed.

If you know local experienced beekeepers it would be worthwhile to ask one to have a look at your hive and the set up. They will also know when feeding is appropriate taking acccount of your climate and local flora. Working from photos, we can only give pointers or hints.
I looked again at the enlarged photos of the cells and I wouldnt rule out sacbrood - a virus disease caused by stress, but i cant see clearly enough.

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Thank you for the information! I will take the flow frames off this evening.
I Will also try to get a better picture but this is what the frame with the dead bees looked like from 2 days before. Most of the frame still has capped cells, it was only about 3 inches of empty sort of frail looking comb.

I was wondering if perhaps the hive was being robbed. And that the robbers damaged the comb spilling it out onto the bees below. I observed the outside of the hive yesterday for some time and there are definitely bees with a very different coloring trying to get in the hive, but when they get in they very quickly seem to be forced back out.

There are definitely fewer bees on the frames than there were last week but there are still a lot. I cleared them off to take the pictures.

The jar is not on the top of the hive and could not drip onto the frames. It’s possible that it is dripping onto the grass however

If robbing is happening you would see dead bees outside the entrance and on the ground in front of the hive as well as seeing it happening, it is like WW# and when you see the fighting it is so obvious. Reduce the entrance to about 4 inches wide and that will make the hive more defendable with less guard bees. Your last photo of a frame mostly capped says the colony is not starving, so on the photo I don’t see the need to continue feeding when they already have stores.
How are you feeding syrup with the Mason jar? Is it sitting inside the roof? Or are you feeding the bees outside of the hive with it? Or as an entrance feeder set up?
Cheers