The colony in Hive H is dead

Submitted by will on Thu, 03/08/2018 - 07:00

The colony in Hive H is dead.

There was clear evidence that the colony starved. There were no stores, and there were numerous bees inside empty cells. I saw evidence that they were still alive quite recently. I think that the recent spell of cold weather finished them off

I'm unsure how to think about this. I'm sad that they're dead; I'm concerned that my actions may have been at fault; but I'm also aware that the colony did not act to build stores when it could have. I fed it in the autumn and saw them building new comb instead of making stores. For this reason I only fed them a modest amount. It's possible that they had filled their stores but when I opened I found 5 deep National frames of comb. That ought to have been enough for a colony of that size.

The colony in Hive H did not defend itself adequately against the wasps. I felt at the time that I had created that problem which is why I moved the hive and colony to Headington.

How much should a low intervention beekeeper intervene? When he has caused a problem? When there is a problem? Never? The colony in Hive H is dead. I'm not wholly to blame but I could have done more and less.