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What were calm bees have turned quite aggressive – why?

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What were calm bees have turned quite aggressive – why?

This happened last evening: We're in Northern California and the weather has been hot. Our hive looks loaded, from the outside. Many of the bees were *washboarding*, I think. We geared up to do an inspection and when we exposed the combs, the bees went nuts. We were gentle and managed to inspect two frames before they started to sting through our clothing, and gloves! We left one frame on the outside of the Flow Hive, replaced it with a clean frame inside, put the Super on, closed it up and left. They followed us a good 50 yards before we found shelter.

This happened today 3:00pm: We went to take a look at the hive and the outside frame, and they were ready for us. They were very aggressive with us simply looking at the hive, and not touching a thing. We know not to stand at the front of the hive and felt like we were following guidelines.

Where did we go wrong? The the hive being so big (hence placement of the Super) does that make them aggressive. It's never happened before.

We didn't use the smoker as we never needed it before.

Advice is genuinely appreciated.

submitted by /u/Gikine
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