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What is this on the bottom of my hive?

Hi All,

I have noticed some small dark brown or black dropping on the bottom of my flow hive. Can anyone help identify what it is ?

These only appeared in the last week or so…

Are they hard? Look like chalk mummies but hard to tell by the photo.

yes, they are hard…

sorry the iphone camera is not great for close ups

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Looks like wax moth poo to me.


i don’t seem to have the light coloured dropping like the ones in the link … mine are just dark brown/black and hard. they look like Cockroach dropping.

They could be. Wax moth droppings can be all dark too, depends on what they are eating.

i need to google what wax moth looks like so i can look for it tomorrow when i inspect the hive.

How big are they? Something for scale (a quarter, a dime, a finger?) would help. I think they look like mouse feces.

Hi @Michael_Bush it’s about 3mm

I stick with wax moth. Mouse poop is bigger - I worked with mice for decades… :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Too small for chalk, I had the scale of the original photo way off!

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The cloths looked like old style J-cloths to me, with stripes I was assuming 2-3mm wide. So I thought wax moth poop was the closest in size and shape. :blush:

The thing to do, of course, is to look in the hive. I vote for mouse or roach poop. Too small maybe for Mus musculus, the common European/worldwide/house/lab mouse, but I’ll bet there are other small rodent-oid marsupials there. You’re in NSW, right? They could also be from the “American” cockroach, very common worldwide. They don’t look like any kind of lepidopteran poop to me. Have fun with your mystery!
Boulder, CO, USA

Yes, looks small for mouse feces. Probably wax moth feces.

this is a 6 week old hive from a package still on a single brood box, any suggestion on how to deal with wax moth on such newish hive ?

The bees are very busy hauling in the pollen and there is good solid brood pattern and stores of nectar. but not all frames are build frame 7 and 8 are maybe at 50% build.

Wax moths are a fact of life. You can’t remove them or kill them. Just don’t give the bees too much space to defend and they will do fine. In other words, don’t add another box until the existing one has all frames with fully drawn comb, 80% full of brood or food and every frame is well-covered with bees. When you keep a hive like that, the bees deal with the wax moths before they become a problem.

There is one possibility. Geckos like hanging around beehives, in fact someone told be that he saw geckos feeding on SHBs as they arrived into his hives just before dark. Large cockroaches wouldn’t be out of the question either. I think the droppings are too large to be wax moth.

They are chalkbrood mummies, the spore forming variety, dispose of carefully as they will spread chalkbrood.

Chalkbrood mummies are more like 6mm or more long. Those are less than 3mm… just not big enough for chalkbrood mummies.

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mice droppings, need to protect entrance with guard entrance.