Friday, August 27, 2010

sticky board DEBRIS

archaeologists are in seventh-heaven when they discover a GARBAGE PIT - why? 'cause you can tell A LOT about people by their GARBAGE.

yet ANOTHER REASON to love a screened bottom board with a sticky trap....DEBRIS. you can learn a lot about what's going on in the hive by looking at the GARBAGE.

hmmm? what are these elongated - smaller than mouse poop "droppings" (the dark - almost black spots)???

WAX WORM DROPPINGS!!!! yup - confirmed - found her and SQUISHED her.

NORMAL hives would be able to fend off this intruder...but this was in my WEAK, queenless hive (that i've been waiting to (more or less) die down and do SOMETHING with when the supers are off the other hives) well - when i discovered this - i tore the hive apart (killed the big juicy intruder) and put the frames in full light. winter and a freeze should take care of other eggs in there - but that's a little way off yet. LIGHT deters them too - they prefer to do their evil in darkness. the handful of remaining bees will have to beg at another door.

it seems i caught it in time - there's very little damage on about 4 frames. i'll probably opt to replace the wax foundation on these....and give them a FLAME treatment with a propane torch (to kill anything in the nooks and crannies of the wood frame)

OTHER things i've noted by examining the sticky boards side by side:
* WHERE the cluster/activity is in the hive (location of debris)
* relative "population"/strength of the hive compared to other hives (amount of debris)

* the majority of the debris seems to be CAPPINGS (from brood)...lots of debris = lots of hatching?
* there's a fair bit of pollen at times - does it fall off when they're in-route to storage? if they're packing pollen - that's another good sign of brood needs....

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