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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Tampa, Fl
    Posts
    5

    Question Ccd In My Bee Tree

    I have a bee tree and it has had honey bees for more than 20 years. In the past year strange things have been happening. Bees come to my windows at night like moths. I have never seen them attracted to light in the past. The colony will almost collapse and then recover from a new incoming swarm finding the nest and the cycle starts again. In the morning I see lots of bees on my deck. Some are dead and others are dieing. Bees are in my house every night and come in an open door to the light. I find many dead under the windows outside in the morning after banging on the glass all night long. I like to photograph them with my video camera and you can see some of the video on google video at this link.

    http://video.google.com/videosearch?q=lyman+bee+tree

    I dont use insecticides because of the bees. I dont think this is the CCD problem.. seems more like a disease or parasite to me... or a combination.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,925

    Default

    They look like honeybees. I've never heard of honeybees flying at night let alone banging on a window at night. That is quite strange behavior. Perhaps that's another thing that is happening with CCD?
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Ventura, California, USA
    Posts
    137

    Default

    Same thing here. Nice strong colony with plenty of nectar flow and taking quart a day of syrup then the hive absconds or dies. Lots of dead or weak bees around the street lights and my flood over the garage. No dead bees under the tree though.

    I can only think that the bees have neurological damage due to pesticides.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,925

    Default

    This is the first I've heard of the attraction to lights at night issue. Are there others out there with similar observations? You have me curious.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Rainier, OR
    Posts
    247

    Default

    My bees at home are about 15-20 feet from my bathroom window, and same distance from a porch light.

    All healthy colonies, nucs and ob hive, but they are indeed attracted to light and will crawl on the windows if there's light behind them.

    Don't know if it's an issue--while I can't vouch for neighborhood pesticides, my bees are on new comb that's never been treated with anything but Fumigil.

    And these hives are boomers with marked queens--the nuc needs to be trimmed down regularly.
    Pocket Meadow Farm

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    chatsworth, calif usa
    Posts
    405

    Default Yes,-

    I've had bees at the window in the morning when the light was left on, lots of them.

    The hive is 10 feet off the kitchen.

    They were gentle at that time, but went south on me and had to be euthanized. I suspect usurption.
    -j
    My Mom's other kids are smarter than me, but i'm not nearly as nice.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Western Pennsylvania
    Posts
    2,071

    Default

    I have had EHB fly to lights when the colony is disturbed.
    I might hypotheses that scouts for some reason are flying out to defend and get lost attracted to the light.

    Very interesting comment by Jim!

    AHB are easily aroused to defense by visual stimulants.
    Potentially, if the colony had been usurped by AHB, slamming porch doors, noises and lights might be sufficient to cause guards to investigate.

    Joe Waggle ~ Derry, PA
    ‘Bees Gone Wild Apiaries'
    FeralBeeProject.com

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Lancaster, Ky. / Frostproof Fl.
    Posts
    984

    Default

    tampa sailor

    This past winter when ccd first appeared there was a "large mass" of dead bees in lake moody next to frostproof. The mass was about 20 ft and about 30 ft or so and fairly thick with dead bees. This was during the honey flow and they appeared to have decided to dive bomb into the water. Your situation sounds similar ....others have also commented that the bees were swarming above the road ect then dissappeared. The neionnictoids insecticide caused mental abnormalities. THis may be the cause. Do you live around any crops that may be sprayed or irrigated with the systemic insecticides? Check arond and see what you can find out!

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

    Default

    tampa sailor states:
    I have never seen them attracted to light in the past.

    tecumseh replies:
    I have notice that bees are most definitely attracted to some of these newer compact florencent bulbs.

    in regards to the hive in the tree constantly changing... it does sound a bit strange although any number of recognized diseases (foul brood for one) or parasites could be the problem. at your location a hive is likely to never cease brood rearing so any problems with mites would be significantly magnified.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Green Lane, PA
    Posts
    839

    Default

    Ten of my hives are out my parents house. The hives are placed about 10 feet away from thier motion detector light. I see 1 or 2 bees there on a consistent basis.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Tampa, Fl
    Posts
    5

    Default

    I don't use insecticides because of my pet bees. But, neighbors could always be using them on their flowsers and lawns. Today they seem happy again as it is sunny after much rain and the flowers are in bloom so I see more pollen coming in. Most of the hive is on the outside of the tree (bark) as the tree is filled with comb now. As you can see in the video, they spend their time cleaning the tree off just outside of the entrance.

    http://video.google.com/videosearch?q=lyman+bee&hl=en

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Land O Lakes, FL
    Posts
    264

    Default

    Just last night I had a bee crawing up and down on my sliding door from our porch to my bedroom. My hives are about 40 ft from there and it was after dark.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Orlando, FL
    Posts
    1,313

    Default

    Tampasailor,

    Your description tells it all. The bees that inhabit the tree are probably collapsing due to varroa and/or SHB and then once the collapse is complete the empty tree (with remnants of comb) becomes desirable to other bees. A new swarm comes along and re-inhabits the tree.

    You are also in the Tampa area which has had a lot of AHB in the area, so the AHB throw off a lot more swarms and continue to throw swarms throughout the entire season, so there is a very good chance that these are AHB.

    AHB are not always mean, in fact they may not get really defensive until the colony gets really large. The cavity in that particular tree may not be big enough for them to ever get large enough, so they may not be terribly defensive even if they are AHB.

    If they were AHB, then that would tend to corroborate the previous post about them investigating noises and lights at night and therefore more likely to have dead bees showing up in window sills and by the porch light etc.

    In fact if the AHB are losing enough bees to the lights to weaken the hive another AHB swarm may usurp them and just move in and kill the queen and it will suddenly get strong again even though the bees never totally disappointed.

    I of course am not there and don't know if any of this is accurate, but it is a scenario of AHB behavior that is borne out in the literature.
    Troy

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Tampa, Fl
    Posts
    5

    Default

    "The Africanized Honey Bee" AHB I had to look that up Troy and got a shock when I Learned what it meant. My bees are pets and I am often right in their face with a camera or picking up drones etc to amaze my friends. Now I am thining about the bug spray at night and getting rid of them. I have only been stung twice in 20 years and never have protection. When I was out to see them last, they were not happy and many were milling about in the air and seemed hyper so I backed off. They are usually happy and busy so perhaps AHB is correct. I had no idea that they had reached Tampa already so I will do some study on this. For others reading this, here is a AHB link

    http://acwm.co.la.ca.us/scripts/AHB.htm

    Thank you Troy!

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Tampa, Fl
    Posts
    5

    Default

    "The Africanized Honey Bee" AHB

    I think I am going to have to kill them off :-(

    In case of an attack by a swarm of defensive honey bees, emergency responders instruct people to run away from the bees by going inside a building or car. In all cases, report swarms of defensive bees to local pest control companies, emergency responders or the state’s toll-free helpline number 888-397-1517.

    Florida’s beekeeping industry has grown tremendously over the years. Florida beekeepers are consistently among the nation’s leaders in honey production with 17 million pounds produced each year. Honey is only part of the story. For every dollar of honey produced in Florida, approximately $150 is generated in honey-bee-pollination services that allow fruits, vegetables, berries, nuts and other foods to form. Agri-economists estimate that without honey bees, one third of the food we eat would disappear.

    To protect honey bees, the Department’s apiary inspection unit has 13 inspectors monitoring Florida’s estimated 250,000 honey bee colonies for harmful pests and diseases. Florida’s honey bee industry is challenged by reduction in honey bee populations due to pests, namely the varroa mite and small hive beetle; a high percentage of our colonies being shipped to other states, such as California for pollination services; and the intrusion of AHBs.

    Protecting and preserving Florida’s beekeeping industry is a key component of the Department’s mission, and managed honey bee colonies are essential to sustaining Florida agriculture. The Department is working with the apiary industry and experts worldwide to address the many issues related to the hybridization of the Africanized and European honey bees. For more information, call the state’s toll-free helpline number at 888-397-1517 or visit http://www.doacs.state.fl.us/pi

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Land O Lakes, FL
    Posts
    264

    Default

    I was speaking to our local inspector recently and he said that there is a greater than 50% chance if a queen mates in this area that it will be AHB.

    I have one hive, that I highly suspect is AHB. As soon as I find the queen, it will be requeened. Been stung and head butted more by that one hive than the others combined by far.

    I am in Tampa.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Helmetta, New Jersey, USA
    Posts
    99

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    This is the first I've heard of the attraction to lights at night issue. Are there others out there with similar observations? You have me curious.
    I have two nucs on my deck, and when I turn on the bathroom light (window near the front of the hives) or the outside light to let the dog out, there's always a bee or two flying like a maniac either into the window or around the light. I've always assumed these were bees already on the outside of the hive being attracted to the light. I rarely see dead bees and very few are attracted to the light, even if a substantial number are hanging out on the outside of the hive.

    tecumseh replies:
    I have notice that bees are most definitely attracted to some of these newer compact florencent bulbs.
    I have these bulbs exclusively in my house, but not outside, just a yellow incandescent there.
    Last edited by Moonshae; 09-13-2007 at 04:50 PM.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Silicon Valley, CA
    Posts
    1,236

    Default

    Michael,

    I have never found the bees to be attracted to incandescent lamps (infrared primarily).
    However, they are certainly attracted to flourescents (UV primarily). In fact during
    the summer I must keep the garage door closed at night to keep them from entering.

    Fuzzy

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Geneva,Florida, Seminole USA
    Posts
    290

    Default lights

    Stand in front of your beehives at night with a flashlight. Yes! They're attracted to light.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Evansville, IN, USA
    Posts
    2,837

    Default Bees and Night Lights

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    This is the first I've heard of the attraction to lights at night issue. Are there others out there with similar observations? You have me curious.

    Some interesting comments (pre CCD?) can be found in Dr. Eric Mussen newsletter for Jul/Aug 2006 (last paragraph of "west Nile Spraying).


    Note: First read the info noted above, THEN read the following topic.
    Can anyone draw a "wild and crazy" connection?
    Last edited by Dave W; 09-15-2007 at 09:14 AM.

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