I was able to sneak into hives 2 and 3 yesterday for a quick look. We are unseasonably warm right now (over 60!), and it was a beautiful day yesterday and today. Just gorgeous.
After a peek inside, I was able to confirm that both hives 2 and 3 died of being too weak. I probably should have combined the two in the fall, but there you have it. In the very top of both hives was a small cluster of bees huddled together. In that very small area the bees were head down in the comb (starvation), and although there was honey only three or four cells away from them, as small as the cluster was, I’m sure there was just no way to get to it. Poor things.
I looked for the queens in the bodies, but I never found either one.
On the other hand, Hive 1 is still going quite strong. They were out in force today, and one even came inside the house today. I’m a little nervous about them eating too much and staring. I may take a box of honey off the other hives and throw it on with the next warm spell just to make sure. I really want this hive to survive and come screaming into spring. We got at least seven gallons off it last year, and I’d like to match that.
Oh, and our daffodils are popping up! 🙂