Albuquerque Beekeepers

Urban beekeeping in New Mexico's largest city.

The hives on my property (which were attended to by a friend) have died. We have removed the old comb and honey before the robber bees could get to it. I will be taking over (for the first time ever) as beekeep. What else is there that I want to do in order to move new bees in? And can I now move the hives to a more optimal place on my property now that there are no bees currently living in the hives?

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Do you know what happened to the bees that were there?  Disease?  If they died because of foul brood or something serious, you might want to torch the inside of the hives.  If not, just clean them out and move them.  Try to find out why they died out!

Get rid of old dark comb you took from there.  Also, freeze the rest of it before re-use.

I haven't had a chance yet, since replying to your comment earlier, to go out to the hives and have a look myself, but I contacted my friend who was taking care of the bees and she said that it looked like collapse. No dead bees anywhere.

Thanks, Mark. I don't know why they died. I will try to find out.

My friend treated them for varroa a few years ago (maybe 3, I don't recall). Before that, they were strong and we were splitting. We think he did it wrong/too much. Ever since, they've been weak - losing at least one hive per year until now, we are out of hives.

I have not looked in the hives yet myself. Our friend pulled all the comb when I was not home, so I couldn't see inside at the time. I wanted to check in here before I went out to do anything with the hives.

I currently have the comb in my fridge that is so cold it freezes some things. Should I put them in the actual freeze? Or is the fridge ok?

The old dark comb won't be any good for rendering?

Two things.

Freezing will kill wax moth larvae/eggs

When I say get rid of, I mean don’t use it in the hive. The wax is perfectly good to melt out of the comb. Old comb can have accumulated contamination which isn’t good for the bees.

Got it! 

Now, I contacted my friend and she said that there were no dead bees anywhere. Since I'm brand new, I don't know why this happens (yet). She says it's probably collapse. There were honey combs left as well as the other comb.

Is there anything I need to do with the hives before I recommission them?

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