Normal or not so much? Bearding?

Removed a existing hive from my neighbors 3 days ago. (we have had very rainy weather since) The sun was coming out today. Is this normal for a new hive to be outside the box like this? I was able to rubber band some of their existing capped brood and pollen and honey to 4 frames. (also, waiting on a 8 frame top and screen bottom), should be here within the next few days. Should I be putting more space on top for the girls? I am from SW FL. To explain how much rain we have had the last few days, Jim Cantore from the weather station is in our area. :))) Thank you experienced beekeepers.

If your weather was hot and humid when you took the photo, they are probably just bearding. That is normal behaviour.

The answer to this question is always the same. :smile: You need to inspect and then consider the following points. Only add a box (honey super, Flow super or brood - same applies to all types) if all of the following are true:

  1. Every frame is mostly filled with fully drawn comb, and
  2. The comb is 80% full of brood, honey or pollen, and
  3. Every frame is well-covered with bees.

The reason is that you need enough bees to defend (from SHB, wasps and wax moths) and use the new space. When the above three items are all true, you have enough bees. :wink:


Thank you so much. I was getting worried. It is very hot and humid. AND RAIN RAIN RAIN :confused:

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Because of your location, I would be very SHB conscious. I would suggest that you check to make sure that the beetles haven’t got got a chance to do any damage or lay any eggs in the combs. Especially where any of the combs in the frames meet. As well as any debris on the floor. Beetles can lay eggs in the debris on the floor.

I would, as a matter of urgency do a thorough inspection, making sure that when you replace the frames, they don’t touch each other or have any trapped bees between them. Remove any debris from the floor & keep a solid floor. Don’t be too keen to replace the solid floor with a sbb.

Hot humid conditions is the conditions that SHB love to breed in. They will take advantage of any opportunity to wreak havoc & do their best to multiply.

Right at this point in time I have some slumgum on the back verandah, the SHB are leaving it alone because it is too cold, however as soon as I put the slumgum into my BSF bin where conditions are much hotter & more humid, the SHB will also lay eggs in it, as well as the BSF.

One thing leads to the other, this is a video we took last winter showing bsfl as well as shbl exiting the bin. You have to look very closely to see the larvae exiting the bin. I don’t think the night shot on that camera was working very well. Anyway you get the general idea.

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Ahhh, yee have the patience of a Saint. :wink:
You need a little spreadsheet or data base with the answers typed up and indexed all ready to copy and paste.
There are about 10 questions which repeatably come up and the answers are on the forum.
Edit: And bless you, you go ahead and answer them again.


…but I’m wondering if the answer will always be the same. Is there anywhere in the world where there are no diseases of honeybees and yet still be a place where bees can live? Tasmania’s Flinders Island in the Furneaux group of Islands is apparently free of American Foul Brood for instance and I can personally vouch for the quality of honey produced on the island having tasted it on a recent trip. I’m sure there are plenty of other pests there however. What about Deal Island in the Kent group for instance?

This is a photo of Flinders Island.


The answer is still the same. It is not about diseases at all. It is about pests, robbers and use of space. Hive population is not so important for “diseases”, but it is very important for keeping other critters out and for making use of available space. :blush:

By the way, your photo is beautiful. :wink:

There are lots of places. However humans are the main distributor of pests and diseases. People go to great lengths to hide produce which either can or does carry disease and pests when they travel and then think it rotten bad luck they got caught…not the consequences of what could happen.
Someone brought AFB and other bee problems to Australia.

Eventually we will all have to live with all the pests and the diseases which affect bees. Isn’t that sobering thought. Hopefully not in my time.

Hi Dawn -yes- I worded my post poorly, I didn’t mention pests until further into the post…was meaning disease and pests generally sorry. I think that there must surely be some remote islands, say like Deal, where there are probably no honeybees and no brood disease, wax moth, hive beetle, rodents or European wasps and where space is just an issue of heat - and then perhaps not much of an issue. Please don’t tell me I’m dreaming and bee utopia does not exist…

edit: Wilfred …just read your post…very true. Not sure if you’ve ever come into Tasmania, but I always enjoy seeing the Beagles at the airports sniffing out the fruit etc!

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I have had a beagle go nuts over my hand luggage in the US. I had taken an apple onto the plane and ate it on board (totally legal - I checked before boarding). The beagle could still smell it 6 hours later! :blush: Of course a search of my bag revealed no fruit, but the beagle was very pleased with itself. :smile:

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