NZBF: white crystals in honey cells

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vinflobie

Platinum
13
10
Narrow Neck AUCKLAND
Experience
Beginner
Hi ...I insected my hive today and noticed some white crystals in some empty honey cells. Haven't noticed this before so wondering
if anyone can confirm if this is normal or not. Many thanks. I attach a couple of photos.

IMG_1539.jpegIMG_1536.jpeg
 

tommy dave

Gold
BOP Club
136
139
mostly wellington, sometimes dunedin
Experience
Hobbyist
It’s melezitose crystals from willow dew honey.
it’s indigestible by the bees and will be mostly cleaned out eventually.
I've seen similar that I've attributed to Pohutukawa, based on crystallised capped honey in frames next to them - good news is that bees seem to use the capped but set Pohutukawa when the cluster gets there. A local Beek I asked a couple of weeks ago about half a dozen or so boxes of probably impossible to extract Pohutukawa had a scratch in some frames and said something along the lines of "still good as feed honey. Pull it off earlier next year"
 

frazzledfozzle

Founder Member
8,995
7,811
Nelson/Tasman District
Experience
Commercial
I’m not 100% sure but I think melezitose is produced from the chemical change in sugars which occurs when the aphids digest the willow sap and excrete what’s left . Does pohutakawa produce honeydew as well as nectar ?
 
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maungaturoto
Experience
Commercial
It’s melezitose crystals from willow dew honey.
it’s indigestible by the bees and will be mostly cleaned out eventually.
i don't think so.
nothing else on the frame looks like willow dew.
it looks like it has crystalline on top and liquid underneath. bees have sucked all the liquid out and left the crystal.
 

frazzledfozzle

Founder Member
8,995
7,811
Nelson/Tasman District
Experience
Commercial
Which is exactly what willow honey dew and melezitose crystals look like.

Ive seen plenty of willow dew and going by the photo that’s what I think it is could be wrong of course but only have the photo to go by :)

either way in the scheme of things it doesn’t matter it’s crystals of one sort or another and Not something for the OP to worry about.
 
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