Dead Bees ... Help!!!

Discussion in 'Wildlife in the Garden' started by KK Ng, Aug 4, 2014.

  1. KK Ng

    KK Ng Hardy Maple

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    For the past few days I have been finding several dead bees in my front porch and I am wondering why. Where do old bees go to die?

    Please help to identify what kind of bees are they.

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    Dead Bee ( photo / image / picture from KK Ng's Garden )

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    ??? ( photo / image / picture from KK Ng's Garden )

    Is there anything I can do to save them if they are dying from unnatural causes?
     
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  3. carolyn

    carolyn Strong Ash

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    KK, they look like honey bees to me. I can't tell what they are dying from though, it isn't normal for you to find them dying on your front porch, either. Can you see a colony of them anywhere? has anybody sprayed any kind of pesticide in or around your home lately? they usually die close to home if there are quite a few of them that you are finding. Usually if one dies (of old age or poison from the field) the worker bees carry the dead bee away from the hive entrance and drop it. they don't just shove them out the opening.

    can you turn the bees over and look for small circular "discs" stuck to the abdomen of the bees anywhere? if so, those are mites. A heavily infested colony will die from them. They are a parasite and suck the life out of the bees.

    Is the proboscis curled under like normal or extended? if it is extended like it is sipping nectar they were probably exposed to some kind of toxin.

    My guess is they were exposed to a toxin since the wings look nice and the thorax is still fuzzy. older bees would have raggedy wings and a shiny thorax.
     
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  4. waretrop

    waretrop Strong Ash Plants Contributor

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    Wow Carolyn. That "bee" a good lesson on the subject. Thank you. Makes good sense to me...
     
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  5. carolyn

    carolyn Strong Ash

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    Barb, you are welcome...I have learned lots since I started keeping bees. Many little things that I never thought of before having them. I find them fascinating little creatures.
     
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  6. KK Ng

    KK Ng Hardy Maple

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    Thank you so much for your explanation Carolyn, it is really helpful and with this knowledge I can further investigate the cause and stop it if possible.

    This morning I found 6 of them ... pity. I just went out and pick out one of them from the yard for inspection. (I swept them up and left them in the yard to let nature take care of them.)

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    poor bee ( photo / image / picture from KK Ng's Garden )

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    Extended probosics ( photo / image / picture from KK Ng's Garden )

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    no disc ( photo / image / picture from KK Ng's Garden )

    There are no circular "discs" stuck to the abdomen so not parasite.

    We had not sprayed any kind of pesticide in or around our home lately ... the neighbours I have no idea.

    There is no colony anywhere nearby.

    Most of them had their proboscis extended and those that did not most probably lost it because they had been "lying in state" in yard for a couple of days.

    You are right Carolyn, they were exposed to toxin. What puzzled me is that every morning for the 3~4 days I find them dead on my porch floor and the numbers are getting bigger.

    I'll go and investigate around the neighbourhood.
     
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  7. carolyn

    carolyn Strong Ash

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    So sad to see this KK. Those definitely look like they were exposed to a toxin of some kind.
     
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  8. KK Ng

    KK Ng Hardy Maple

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    Found another four this morning and I could not find and hives walking around the neighbourhood or any sign of heavy pesticide usage... sigh!
     
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  9. carolyn

    carolyn Strong Ash

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    You may never know where the toxin came from. Fields can be sprayed and the bees can bring it back into the hive from a mile or two away.
     
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  10. KK Ng

    KK Ng Hardy Maple

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    Good news, check everywhere and there is no dead bee today.
     
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  11. Sherry8

    Sherry8 I Love Birds!

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    Sorry to hear of the bees...we need them. I have been finding more butterflys, hummingbird moths, and all sorts of little bugs that are dying in the yard. I am chemical free here but none of the neighbors are. All of them are spraying for bugs in their lawns and killing their weeds, not realizing you kill the good bugs along with the bad ones.
     
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  12. Tooty2shoes

    Tooty2shoes Hardy Maple

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    Yes it is sad to see that happening. Sherry like you said. People just do not have a clue as to what they are doing by all that spraying. Then folks wonder why so many people get cancer and such diseases.
    I hope I don't step on anyones toes. But I hate seeing people move out into the country. Buy a couple of acres and then turn it into lawn. Which they then spray, mow. I know folks who are picky about their lawns would not like mine. We have weeds of all sorts. But also bugs, butterflies, tree frogs ect.
     
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  13. Sherry8

    Sherry8 I Love Birds!

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    Through years of learning and seeing what kind of yard I can have with all of the butterflys, bugs, moths, frogs, toads,birds, etc. I choose not to spray. My neighbors don't care for my clover growing, but I don't care. I have a sign up that says it is a natural habitat and I got this way from learning all about nature and its survival. I try organic ways and we don't use chemicals and hopefully they will see that my lawn looks just as nice as theirs when they drive past and at times greener....only if you look close can you see some weeds. Maybe the rabbits will eat more of the clover instead of my flowers... :) Sorry the phone rang and I just wanted to add that maybe if people really take a look at my lawn and realize that they don't need chemicals to have a nice looking lawn it will be worth it having just one family follow in my footsteps.
     
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  14. MountainGuardian

    MountainGuardian New Seed

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    I am very new to honey bees, we just happened to have wild swarm land in one of my cherry trees in front of the house last year. Even luckier, a friend of mine just happened to be visiting right then who had helped to catch wild bee swarms at the university where he works.

    Tom ran home and got his stuff and I called around to several neighboring farms looking for extra hive boxes. We met back here about 2 hours later and they had settled to a giant ball on my cherry tree by then. We carefully scooped them into a box, about ten pounds of them and then added them to my newly acquired hive boxes.

    The bees are doing great, but I kept checking this spring and was a bit concerned because there were hundreds of dead bees outside the hive on the ground. I guess it is normal for quite a few of them to die from whatever causes. The fact that you are finding a large number in a specific area, makes me wonder if there may be a hive nearby.
     
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  15. LeslieBeee

    LeslieBeee New Seed

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    Carolyn,

    Guessing is not wise. Chances are you guessed wrong regarding dead bees on the porch. More than likely, they were simply attracted by the porch light at sunset and/or sunrise, got confused, and died. This is perfectly normal when a beehive is nearby. The owner of the house might be wise to have a beekeeper investigate his home, just in case they have set up residence inside a wall. Note I said BEEKEEPER rather than EXTERMINATOR!

    We have a hive in a partly dead tree by the street in front of our house. Sometimes we forget to turn off the porch light, and later find dead bees on the porch. Nothing to worry about.

    Leslie
     
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  16. carolyn

    carolyn Strong Ash

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    really? oh my! thanks for your wisdom.
     

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