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  1. #1

    Post

    A bee journal publisher waits for proof of anti-mite effectiveness before publishing small cell effectiveness. I thought perhaps someone here could guide me, and them, to such.

    Brian Cady

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
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    I think by what is meant by "proof" is "proof
    in the form of a controlled study".

    I have outlined a simple methodology for such
    a study more than once, but the small-cell
    advocates apparently do not wish to make
    any of their regressed small-cell colonies
    available for such studies, which involve
    loaning them (and having them moved) to
    some research facility or another for the
    period of the test.

    So, the white lab-coat set remains unwilling
    to take the time to "regress bees" on their
    very limited budgets, and the cell-cell set
    keeps chanting "try it you'll like it", as if
    that was some form of "proof", or as if mere
    unwillingness to "drink the kool-aid" on the
    part of the bulk of beekeepers and researchers
    was stubbornness, rather than typical prudence.

    Quite an impasse.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Casper, WY
    Posts
    526

    Post

    Hi Guys,

    My small cell colonies have remained untreated since 2000 and have thrived. Small cell bees when un-regressed, required treatment to survive in the same beeyard.

    See: www.bwrangler.com/bee/sunr.htm

    I've tried small cell and it works. But I don't subscribe to most of the small cell rhetoric.

    See: www.bwrangler.com/bee/smus.htm

    Now for my little rant. :&gt

    Why should I donate a couple of my small cell hives and probably pay to have them transported to a university for testing. I've done the testing at my expense, and I bet my budget is more limited than most of the researchers budgets are.

    If a research department couldn't spring for a few boxes of small cell foundation and a couple of hives on their own, they had better shut down the coffee machine and go home:&gt Doesn't appear to be much curiosity there. Is money the only motivation? Or is it just like almost every other government driven enterprise?

    And as for the "try it you'll like it" chant, that's what has provided the basis for almost every aspect of beekeeping today. Other than the strips and chems, can anyone name a single beekeeping practice that has been initiated from research alone, without having first been perfected in the field by the beesuit set?

    It appears that small cell hives must be established for the researchers. Then maybe someone could prove to them that small cell works. Then when all doubt is removed, they could come forth and tell us why it works! :&gt

    I wonder why anyone would use a smoker, a Langstroth hive, an extractor, graft queens, cream honey, overwinter indoors, migrate, use foundation, wire a frame, or almost anything else without an official blessings? None of these have it.

    I think the impasse is the result of a clash of beekeeping personalities and some political sensure. On one hand, the major promoter of small cell has quite an anti-establishment bent. Much has been linked with small cell that contradicts research done. And much is parroted in the small cell camp based upon faith in anothers testimony without much personal experience.

    These personalities and attitudes definately turn off some more prudent beekeepers. And they definately prejudice the research crowd. Any researcher taking up a small cell project might get their lab coat dirty and loose the esteem of his peers if small cell doesn't work. Who would risk their pension for that?

    There's no impasse for those who like to try things for themselves, thanks to Dadant and their small cell foundation. If you try it. Share your results. It's the difference between cutting edge beekeeping and dragging anchor beekeeping.

    Regards
    Dennis
    Gosh, this rant isn't very small. But it's ok. The drug store is rushing me a new bottle of Prozac and I will be ok in a few hours. :&gt))))
    Last edited by D. Murrell; 10-25-2007 at 01:24 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
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    Alpine, NY (near Cayuga Lake)
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    Post

    So, the white lab-coat set remains unwilling
    to take the time to "regress bees" on their
    very limited budgets,
    I'm near Cornell, Dyce labs. I'm also a graduate of Cornell. Believe me, they have the funds.
    Lesli<br /> <a href=\"http://beeyard.blogspot.com/\" target=\"_blank\">http://beeyard.blogspot.com/</a>

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    46,212

    Post

    Since small cell packages (which eliminated the regression step) are available from Buckeye and Bolling bees, it seems like the far better way to do a small cell experiment would be to buy X number of packages and X number of new hives and put 4.9mm wax in half the hives and 5.4mm in half the hives and put the bees in the hives. It would be cheaper and easier than shipping full hives of bees and it would eliminate the argument that the bees or some other variable is the issue, since many small cell beekeepers are trying to find and raise feral survivors.

    The only impasse I see is that no one in the scientific community wants to do the research.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2002
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    San Mateo, CA
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    I lost 66% of my small cell colonies (not medicated, (2 out of three).
    At same yard - 32% of my large cell, some medicated, (8 out of 25).
    9%, one out of eleven, large cell, all medicated, at another yard .

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
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    Alpine, NY (near Cayuga Lake)
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    Post

    I lost 100% of my large cell (1 colony) to starvation.
    Lesli<br /> <a href=\"http://beeyard.blogspot.com/\" target=\"_blank\">http://beeyard.blogspot.com/</a>

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Alpine, NY (near Cayuga Lake)
    Posts
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    Post

    or as if mere
    unwillingness to "drink the kool-aid" on the
    part of the bulk of beekeepers and researchers
    was stubbornness, rather than typical prudence.
    Drink the kool-aid? That analogy would be more appropriate for those putting antibiotics and chemical strips in the hives twice a year. There's nothing prudent about using antibiotics to prevent disease. We've known for a looong time that it's a recipe for creating resistant strains. And yet, nearly every beekeeping book I have tells me to dose the girls once or twice a year.

    And why shouldn't researches try this? As Michael pointed out, small cell bees are available, small cell foundation is available. It doesn't cost any more to set up an SC hive than a regular one. There's nothing wrong, and a whole lot that's right, with trying to keep bees (or cows or goats or raise food) without extra chemicals.

    I would be glad to have some real research. But in the meantime, I can learn from the experience of others who are doing small cell and compare it to my own experience.
    Lesli<br /> <a href=\"http://beeyard.blogspot.com/\" target=\"_blank\">http://beeyard.blogspot.com/</a>

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Kiel WI, USA
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    Post

    On a related note, has anyone gotten a look at the fully drawn plastic small cell combs yet?

  10. #10
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    Mar 2005
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    Erin, NY /Florence SC
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    Leslie, Don't even get me started on Dyce. I like Joe Calderone but feel kind of short changed. I worked with a group and attended meetings with then State Senator Randy Kuhl to promote the re-invogoration of Dyce. As a result Dyce got a state grant ( soft money in the beginning) to do research. ( I think around $50,000) Looking back I think the money could have been better spent at Beltsville. As far as meds go we do all know what a long term bomb antibiotics are. It looks much different though if you have $30,000 worth of equipment at risk (which is only for a still small time operation like mine) or if you have $300 at risk. We strive to integrate new techniques for management ( like the very intensive non-medicating management study out of New Zealand aimed at control of foulbrood). Having destroyed a couple thousand old frames in the last 2 years, no longer making frame exchange for equalization, management of honey supers and such has had a huge impact on foulbrood for us. I still rotate antibiotics hoping that I can stay on top of it until I have mastered a kinder/gentler but high percentage of success management method.

  11. #11
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    Jan 2005
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    Alpine, NY (near Cayuga Lake)
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    I agree that it is much more difficult for a commercial operation, when there's more at stake than there is for a hobbyist.

    What was it that Dyce did or didn't do that made you feel shortchanged?
    Lesli<br /> <a href=\"http://beeyard.blogspot.com/\" target=\"_blank\">http://beeyard.blogspot.com/</a>

  12. #12
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    Erin, NY /Florence SC
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    #1 Hired a very intelligent field assistance who had extensive experiance in setting up an extremely successful honey cooperative in some developing island areas who couldn't be bothered to give a local bee club an hour or so talk on how it was done. That group was very interested in forming a cooperative. Imagine that we spent hours of our time going to meetings, doing promotion, writing letters and the guy who gets hired because of that can't be bothered for an hour to talk to a group. (he did talk to groups as long as they were throwing 75 or a $100 his direction.)

    #2 Worked very hard (as researchers should) at maintaining a beeyard heavily infested with varroa mites for study right at Cornell, not much isolation from outlying beekeepers.

    #3 Did not have any easily accessable updates and usable information for the general beekeeping public relating to new methodology, studies which were in progress, etc. unless you invested in their "Master Beekeeping Course" which most commercial guys don't have a need for or time for.
    Not that we don't need to learn, we just don't need to take a course in hiving packages to get information which as taxpayers we are paying for anyway.

    Sometimes it was more about academia than really helping the beekeepers that initially supported the program with their time and tax dollars in the beginning.
    When I had contacted Beltsville in those days I always found the staff extremely intent on helping me resolve issues. Although Dyce is much smaller I think much could have been accomplished through web updates and possibly some type of forum.

  13. #13
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    Dec 2004
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    Hi Brian,

    In this cell size study by Piccirillo in De Jong, they state:

    "When all of the approximately 300 worker brood cells analyzed in each colony were compared, we found a significant positive correlation between cell width and the number of invading varroa females per cell in four of the six colonies."

    "As varroa is more prevalent in the larger European-sized brood cells than in the naturally built Africanized worker brood cells, the use of unnaturally large comb cell size should be re-examined in the light of its effect on parasite levels."

    "The small width comb cells produced by Africanized honey bees may have a role in the ability of these bees to tolerate infestations by Varroa destructor, furthermore it appears that natural-sized comb cells are superior to over-sized comb cells for disease resistance."


    Here's the link:
    http://www.funpecrp.com.br/gmr/year2..._full_text.htm

    I emailed Prof. De Jong about this a few weeks ago. When asked about disease resistance in the small cell bees he said:
    "that it makes sense that the bees would be more efficient at taking care of brood in natural sized comb."

    He mentioned:
    "There is a more or less
    related paper in ABJ - , E.; Piccirillo, G.A.; De Jong, D. A semi-natural bioassay for hort-finding behavior of Varroa destructor. Am.
    Bee J., 144: 625-627, 2004."

    May be more good small cell stuff, because he stated that:
    "We will be publishing a few more on this theme, and we will continue to work in this area."

  14. #14
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    Post

    Dennis, beekeepers will quit asking for scientific proof the day we develope a squirt application for small cell.

  15. #15
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    &gt; The only impasse I see is that no one in the
    &gt; scientific community wants to do the research.

    Research has been done, and the results were less
    than stunning. The reaction was for everyone
    to groan and moan about the methodology used,
    and construct elaborate conspiracy theories
    about the "pesticide industry" somehow influencing
    the researchers.

    Now it is suddenly claimed that no one "wants"
    to do the research? That's just untruthful.

    Even if yet another research project was done
    using the "small cell packages" and the results
    were less than stunning, the researchers would yet
    again be pelted with rotten fruit, stones, and
    random clods of earth by the small-cell true
    believers, and some sort of excuse would be
    trotted out to "prove" that the methodology was
    (once again) flawed.

    As I have said before, don't give the researchers
    any room for error - loan them hives that YOU
    agree are "true small-cell hives", and then you
    will know that they are looking at the same hives
    that you claim are superior due solely to their
    small cell regression. It need not be a formal
    study at first, and it need not be a large number
    of hives at first. Just enough to let them see
    how the hives do against varroa. If the hives
    are as robust as claimed, they can certainly
    survive the test period without any problem,
    and the test period need not be long, nor need
    it conflict with the usual honey-production
    cycle, as mites tend to be worst in late
    summer, after the main harvests are over.

    While I agree that the most recent studies done
    clearly did stumble on the whole "regression
    technique" issue, it is NOT necessary that the
    researcher do the regression work.

    So, who is going to put a hive where their
    mouth is, and accept the results as valid?

    I'm still waiting to see if anyone will.

    Raise, call, or fold. Your choice. [img]smile.gif[/img]

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
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    DuPage County, Illinois USA
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    Post

    &gt; Now it is suddenly claimed that no one "wants"
    &gt; to do the research? That's just untruthful.

    Okay, give us names.

    &gt; As I have said before, don't give the researchers
    &gt; any room for error - loan then hives that YOU
    &gt; agree are "true small-cell hives",

    A better way is to have the researchers go to where the bees are and perform their testing in "the real world."

    &gt; So, who is going to put a hive where their
    &gt; mouth is, and accept the results as valid?

    No one has to accept the results as valid. Valid happens when the study is clearly done with respect to the dynamics of the whole hive. Using bits and pieces of different cell sizes in a hive proves nothing except that the study was embarrassingly poorly done.

    - Barry
    Regards, Barry

  17. #17
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    &gt;Raise, call, or fold. Your choice.

    No one else has anything on the table and I have nothing on the table. I have nothing to win or lose here. My hives are doing fine.

    You're asking some small cell beekeeper to provide hives to some unnamed researcher in some unnamed location to do some unspecified research that supposedly will have something to do with small cell and Varroa, which has no benefit for those of us who are already succeeding with it. I'd have a hard time convincing the IRS I'm trying to make a profit, if I gave away quite a few hives with no possible return on my investment.

    On the other hand it is very tempting to try to help out the beekeepers of the world with this. If you can get a SPECIFIED researcher in a SPECIFIED location that will do a SPECIFIED protocol that is workable, then I'd probably seriously be interested from a strictly altruistic point of view.

    But as far as "Raise, call, or fold" there is currently nothing on the table for me to win or lose.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  18. #18
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    Dec 2004
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    --So, who is going to put a hive where their
    mouth is, and accept the results as valid?

    This has been done.
    Here is the study:

    http://www.funpecrp.com.br/gmr/year2..._full_text.htm

  19. #19
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    Sep 2004
    Location
    Anchorage, Alaska
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    My one small cell hive survived the winter up here at latitude N. 61ΒΊ. The other day, after returning from NY, I thought they were dead, so pulled off the tarpaper wrap and removed the cover. They were alive and well. Sometimes it's good to be wrong......

  20. #20

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    naturebee, thank you. That is just what I hoped to find. I forwarded the link to the editor.

    Brian Cady

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