Bees making comb all over the place and BIG bees

Patty_WyJune 13, 2011

I received the two frames of bees and brood from a local beekeeper when both my packages of bees died off. He brought them about 3 weeks ago and they have been going like gangbusters ever since. I have been feeding them old crystalized honey and corn syrup to help them build comb on the 7 brand new frames even though we are in the midst of a nectar flow with both our sanfoin and alfalfa fields. They have I have a feeder with water in front of the hive as well. I have been checking their hive about once a week to make sure the queen hasn't died and she has been there, busy laying eggs and doing her thing. I have had two things come up that I don't understand. They have all these beautiful brand-spanking new frames and although they have built comb on both sides of two frames the bees are building comb on top of frames near the opening of the inner cover and in the small area extending down from the frames. The other thing is I have been seeing these gigantic bees occasionally coming into my hive and I don't know if they are robbers or not. They are about 1/3 bigger than the worker bees but I'm not sure they are drones...the area behind the head and towards the back is shiny black and the stripes on the lower part of the bodies are not as obvious as the worker bees. I don't know if they are robber bees or just gigantic lazy drones looking for some action. Any ideas?

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
randy41_1

if the giants bees aren't being attacked by the regular size bees then they are probably drones.
you can clean up stray comb when you inspect the hive. feeding is a good thing to do with a small hive population.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2011 at 5:04PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Konrad___far_north(3..just outside of Edmonton)

Sounds like drone bees. Sometimes on new foundation bees draw comb uneven height both sides, so then you can cut some off if too high and turn the frame around. The extra comb, [burr comb] very normal, it is basically the extension of the comb frames and lots of large cells are made for drones. Getting rid of these combs helps to lower Varroa population, since they prefer these cells.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2011 at 10:00PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Patty_Wy

What I found extremely odd is that some of the comb on top of one of the frames has honey in it! Is that normal?

    Bookmark   June 15, 2011 at 2:09AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
randy41_1

yes that is normal. looks like you'll have a snack when you clean up the stray comb.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2011 at 5:32PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Konrad___far_north(3..just outside of Edmonton)

Yes...I find this is a sign of running out of room, time to put on
honey super.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2011 at 1:04AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Patty_Wy

I hope not! I have about 4 frames the bees haven't even started building on. I am working on removing the plastic part of the frames so the bees can build the kind of comb they naturally want to build. I understand this can help with the varroa mite problem.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2011 at 4:11PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Where do bumblebees live?
I have hundreds of bumblebees ( ID'd from a photo in...
susanzone5
"How Your Bee-Friendly Garden May Actually Be Killing Bees"
http://www.wired.com/2014/06/garden-center-neonicotinoids/ Last...
subk3
Is this little thing really a bee?
This looks like a honey bee and wallows around in pollen...
grubby_AZ
Observation Hive
I'm interested in setting up an observation hive. I...
katetrav
Raising Bumble Bees for the Home Gardner
Hello Garden Web Friends, For the past few years, I...
Sunrise Vineyards
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™