We had some troubles with our older son this fall, so I didn't get my bee chores done timely. SIGH! Those insipid mites really do stress the bees! Our state apiarist came out for a look-see and - AIGH!! - two of our five hives were on the decline.
- dying older brood and pupae
- spotty brood pattern
- lots of dead bees outside the hives
- several bees with deformed wings
- population decline
So the mites were making a mess and there was a chance that it could be Eur Foul Brood, too. The apiarist suggested that I do a late mite treatment and treat with an antibiotic. I did not want to use an antibiotic! But it was either that or plan to lose the hive this winter. I treated and the hives seem to be rebounding well. So much for trying to be treatment-free. Maybe getting back on track with bee chores and we won't have to treat next season.