Dead Baby Bees

THE FOLLOWING HAS BEEN UPDATED SINCE IT WAS ORIGINALLY POSTED.

I found some dead baby bees outside Hive #1 today, and now I’m thinking I may have made a mistake when I added the second brood chamber over the weekend.


Sad looking, isn’t it?

The forecast called for sunshine today, but the sun did not come out.

It was cold and wet all day, not a good day for bees, especially after I split up the brood nest the day before — and that’s probably what I should not have done.



Moving some fully drawn frames into the new box was an okay move, but separating them by putting empty frames between all the drawn frames may have split up the brood too much for the limited number of bees to keep them warm enough to develop properly… and so inevitably a few have died from the cold. I hope it’s only these few.

I called a local beekeeper for advice before I added our second brood chamber, but no one answered and I didn’t leave a message. The next time I’m uncertain about something this important, I’m leaving a message and waiting until I hear back. I may be overly concerned again (I usually am). But I hope the weather warms up fast so the bees can get back in action.

UPDATE (Aug. 19/10): I only saw dead white bees that one day. The weather has been warm since and the bees have been out every day in impressive numbers. I’m not worried about Hive #1 as long as the warm weather holds up. Even on cloudy days with showers, as long as it’s warm, they’re out en masse. Hive #2 was slow for a while, but their activity has picked up in the past few days.

Related posts: Foundationless Frames, Adding a Second Brood Chamber and Expanding the Hive (Video).

PHOTOS NOTE (AUGUST 2015): The photos in this post may not display properly because they were uploaded through Google’s Picasa online photo album service, a service I no longer use because certain updates created more work for me instead of streamlining the process. I will eventually replace the photos with ones hosted on the Mud Songs server. This note will disappear when (or if) that happens.

4 thoughts on “Dead Baby Bees

  1. I’m in the beginning stages of beekeeping… just reading.
    I hope to start up next year near Clarenville, NL

    From what I have read from one book it said that the hive has to be around 90 degrees, so the trick is to move as fast as you can once the hive is open. They have to gorge themselves with honey to generate the heat required to get the temperature back.

    The cold weather we have had this year has not helped the bee’s.

    Thank you for putting this blog together I hope that it help’s to stimulates more interest in beekeeping here in Newfoundland. Then we can have a beekeeping association like some of the other provinces.

  2. Hi John,

    Thank you for putting this blog together I hope that it help’s to stimulates more interest in beekeeping here in Newfoundland. Then we can have a beekeeping association like some of the other provinces.

    I hope so too. I can call up Aubrey at Paradise Farms, but beekeepers would benefit most from actually getting together with other beekeepers and demonstrating what we do and don’t do — what to do, what not to do. I’ve read a lot, but seeing someone practice beekeeping techniques provides a much more practical guide. I love YouTube videos for that reason. The Long Lane videos aren’t a bad place to start:

    http://www.youtube.com/user/longlanehoney

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