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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Milwaukee, WI
    Posts
    39

    Post

    Caveat: I'm a complete newbee. No bees until spring but am reading like crazy and have learned a lot here. So here's the thing.

    </font>
    • I've read that AFB has a distinctive smell.</font>
    • Dogs can be trained to find drugs, bombs, people (dead or alive), skin tumors, and even mercury.</font>

    You see where I'm going. It seems to me that it might be possible to train a "bee dog". It would only be practical for large operations or state inspectors. (Unless there was demand for traveling bee dog outfits. hmm.)

    Heading off your first objection: The dog would get stung. So you select a breed with a good nose and a thick coat. A veil could be fashioned to protect his muzzle. I've seen people walking dogs that were wearing goofy costumes, even sun glasses. A veil shouldn't be too much of a stretch. After a field trial, it might turn out that the south end of the animal needs some protection too.

    If this is not a dumb idea, and I'm the first to present it, please name the first bee dog "Tom" [img]smile.gif[/img]

    Now if I could just get my fishing dog to stop finding carp.

    Best,
    Tom

    [size="1"][ December 19, 2005, 08:24 PM: Message edited by: TRC ][/size]
    <a href=\"http://beenews.blogspot.com\" target=\"_blank\">Bee News</a>

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Clayton Indiana
    Posts
    348

    Post

    While you are teaching him to locate AFB, why not train it to locate morel mushrooms in the spring? [img]smile.gif[/img]

    Tom -keep up the creative thinking. I love the idea!
    Todd Zeiner

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Worthington, Pennsylvania USA
    Posts
    1,848

    Post

    Hey Todd Zeiner--nice to know another shroomer!
    Hey TRC-is your dog finding Carp with or without mercury?
    If pigs can find truffle mushroom corms there is absolutely no reason the ol hound dog can not find a few morels.
    Sounds feasible to me and if I can train my old hound to "point" out morels I will change its name from "socks" to "Tom". Keep thinking!
    "Younz" have a great day, I will.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Milwaukee, WI
    Posts
    39

    Post

    That makes 3 shroomers here so far. Shaggy manes are one of my favorites, and I don't need a dog. I can spot them from the freeway. Same thing with puff balls. The trick with those is to get to them before a kid does. Kids see "kick me".

    Best,
    Tom
    <a href=\"http://beenews.blogspot.com\" target=\"_blank\">Bee News</a>

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Erin, NY /Florence SC
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    3,361

    Post

    There is a man in Maryland who has already done this. I've talked with a local beekeeper here who breeds and trains German Shepherds and advises it would easy to do. The problem I see is would have to be at night as the bees are on my Aussy when she's even near the outyards. I'd be there'd be a market for the service, especially in big operations. We'd be able to pick it up well before it developed into a serious problem.

    [size="1"][ December 19, 2005, 09:31 PM: Message edited by: Joel ][/size]

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    1,525

    Post

    Not bad. i have trained Police and narc dogs. BTW, an explosive dog is taught to place his nose close the the object then sit. no touching for obvious reasons. Probably the same thing for AFB.

    Walk him down between the rows at night. he can check side to side. when he sits, mark that hive, give him a treat and go on to the next. Work only at night and pick up $100 per hour for it.

    Hawk
    KC0YXI

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Milwaukee, WI
    Posts
    39

    Post

    Hi Joel,

    I googled like crazy and couldn't find the guy in Maryland. Could you please send a reference?

    Best,
    Tom
    <a href=\"http://beenews.blogspot.com\" target=\"_blank\">Bee News</a>

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    lewisberry, Pa, usa
    Posts
    6,080

    Post

    The dog they used for years I beleive died several years ago. I attended Maryland meetings from time to time a few years back and met the dog. I believe it was a yeallow lab or a golden. The dog at that time was like 10 years or older. Maryland beekeepers used the dog for years.
    I had heard that they were training another dog but that was as of two or more years ago.

    I do not have any of the Maryland meeting minutes at hand at the moment, but I would think contacting the Marylamd state association or the state inspector, would start you in the right direct for information or for questions.

    The dog worked daytime and would simply sniff the back of each hive. The dog had no problems with the bees and was very good.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    College Station, Texas
    Posts
    6,973

    Post

    the first time you run into a seriously affect afb hive, unless you are insulin dependent then your nose will do just fine...

    mrs tecumseh is doing a bit of dog training and from our conversation I do suspect that you could train a dog to locate just about anything that smells. tecumseh like to inform folks that the advantage that a dog has over a person is that a dog smells in color.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    College Station, Texas
    Posts
    6,973

    Post

    the first time you run into a seriously affect afb hive, unless you are insulin dependent then your nose will do just fine...

    mrs tecumseh is doing a bit of dog training and from our conversation I do suspect that you could train a dog to locate just about anything that smells. tecumseh like to inform folks that the advantage that a dog has over a person is that a dog smells in color.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    3,401

    Post

    &gt; I googled like crazy and couldn't find the guy
    &gt; in Maryland. Could you please send a reference?

    Bill Troup, and his wife Nancy, who often appear
    on the program at bee meetings in the Mid-Atlantic
    states.

    10618 Honeyfield Rd
    Williamsport, MD 21795
    301-223-9662, 240-217-9662
    E-mail: beestroup@erols.com

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Danbury,Ct. USA
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    1,966

    Post

    I'd heard of this years ago. I often wondered why no one went further with it.

    Dickm

    [size="1"][ December 20, 2005, 06:49 AM: Message edited by: dickm ][/size]

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Central Wisconsin
    Posts
    342

    Post

    I think the idea is very doo-able. I also think any dog who's shown a good nose could be trained. Our golden dug up shrooms in France (unfortunatly, not truffles) and our flatcoat locates varmints by smell under the snow and catches them. Wonder if I could train one of the rescued potbellied pigs?

    My favorites are the morels.
    Buy locally, buy only humanely raised animals, eat in season, keep bees!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Wyoming
    Posts
    124

    Post

    That's a really neat idea! But would you have to get something with the AFB smell on it? Or have to get your own hive of AFB to teach the dog what's right and wrong? Yikes LOL
    Two roads diverged in a wood and I - I took the one less traveled by...

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Erin, NY /Florence SC
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    Post

    Thanks Jim for posting the info. Bjorn is right the dog was a yellow lab and was getting old when I became aware of this several year ago.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Milwaukee, WI
    Posts
    39

    Post

    Thanks all for the follow ups. I figured if it was a really good idea, someone would have done it.

    Yes. To train the dog you would need some AFB. I imagine that an infected frame could be marinated in peroxide or something to defuse it.

    You would also need to use the sample now and then while working the dog. He needs a "win" now and then to keep his interest. Every now and then you hear that the police made a sweep of a building, and left a small amount of drugs or explosive behind by mistake. The dogs were supposed to find it and get an attaboy. Imagine breaking that bit of news to your boss at headquarters

    Best,
    Tom
    <a href=\"http://beenews.blogspot.com\" target=\"_blank\">Bee News</a>

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Erin, NY /Florence SC
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    Post

    Actually if you use a frame that is free of honey and keep it bagged except for the scent record training protocol you won't have any interest from the bees. Why not do it in the off season when the bees are not active.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Milwaukee, WI
    Posts
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    Hi Joel,

    Chalk it up to my ignorance concerning AFB. If spores are the transmission vector, a 3% solution of hydrogen peroxide should murder them. Then again it might be a virus. Peroxide may be somewhat less effective then.

    Good point about training in the off season. I didn't think of working the dogs at night either. Duh!

    Best,
    Tom
    <a href=\"http://beenews.blogspot.com\" target=\"_blank\">Bee News</a>

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,203

    Post

    "American foulbrood spores are highly-resistant to desiccation, heat, and chemical disinfectants. These spores can remain virulent for more than forty years in combs and honey."

    http://maarec.cas.psu.edu/pest&disease/slide10.htm
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    New Albany, Ohio
    Posts
    350

    Post

    At one time, I thought I could train my chocolate lab to find morels. That didn't work. Then I tried to train him to find shed deer antlers. That didn't work either. He was really good at finding goose poop down at the pond and eating it...

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