What is going to kill them first: Varroa, starvation … or me?

My brain went into overdrive trying to understand a complex problem of why there was no brood or eggs (see previous post).  With only my novice understanding I had to phone a couple of beekeeper friends and posted the situation on a forum.

Possibilities (most likely to least likely):

  1. After I harvested the honey the bees were left with no/little stores and the Queen stopped laying as there was not food for the eggs (other beekeepers have reported similar events)
  2. The Apiguard stopped the Queen laying
  3. The Apiguard made the bees destroy their own brood
  4. The Queen was killed during the last inspection 3.5 weeks ago
  5. When I combined the hives, there was a Virgin Queen in the weak colony (hence, no brood) and she killed my laying Queen in the strong brood box, leaving me with the Virgin Queen

I would have fed the bees earlier, but I needed to use the Apiguard.  It was a case of what was going to kill them first: Varroa or starvation … or me?


  • Keep feeding the bees as much as they need
  • Inspect in a weeks time to check for eggs and if there aren’t any buy a Queen
  • Start a Varroa count in a weeks time

I’ll let you know how it goes.

Postscript: if you want to know what happened next, please read Breaking News – No Eggs.

Author: Roger

regaining my sanity through beekeeping

2 thoughts on “What is going to kill them first: Varroa, starvation … or me?”

  1. You can feed whilst treating with Apiguard if you need to; it can distract the bees from the Apiguard but that’s preferable to them starving. Hope you get some good news soon.

    1. I agree. Perhaps I should have fed them for a couple of days during the treatment. I have been feeding them for 9 days now. So far fed them 12Kg of sugar!! Will check again Saturday to see if they need more and most importantly if there are any eggs!

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