[ocba] Weather and the bees
ra41717 at gmail.com
Sun Apr 17 19:42:59 EDT 2011
"Absconding" --- where the bees all pick up and leave --- is a
possibility with any hive, although fortunately it doesn't happen very
often with our European bees. With a brand new package, the risk is
higher because the bees haven't set up housekeeping yet, so they aren't
leaving anything valuable behind. A way to increase the chances a
package will stay put is to give it a frame of open brood. They are much
less likely to abandon a hive with larvae that need care. But when you
are starting from scratch with your very first package, you obviously
can't do that. You probably did everything you are expected to do in
You'll have to ask your bees why they decided to leave. They may have
just found a "better" home somewhere else. I haven't heard of storms
triggering absconding, but bees will sometimes abscond due to stress.
Maybe the change in atmospheric pressure from all the tornadoes did have
something to do with it; what we don't know is a lot more than what we
do know about bees.
Whatever the actual cause, I think in your case it was just plain bad luck!
On 4/17/2011 2:17 PM, Marci Ryan wrote:
> Hi all,
> We are new beekeepers and left our newly installed 3 lb package with
> queen for the week. We fed them, and in my one inspection, they seemed
> fine. We just got news from our bee-sitter that there was no activity
> in the hive flowing yesterday's storms. They seem to have disappeared.
> Is this common when tornados are around? Did we have bad luck or is
> there something in our mismanagement? Thanks for your ideas, and I'd
> love to be on the list for capturing a swarm!
> Sent from my iPhone
> ocba mailing list
> North Carolina Beekeeping
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