what causes shriveled wings?
I have been seeing a few bees in the grass with shriveled wings, mostly on one side. I have seen bees with normal wear and tear but this seems different. They seem to have a scale-like skin on the back, like a snake shedding it's skin. What kind of desease is this? What's is the treatment?
This is a sign of parasitic mite syndrome, specifically deformed wing virus that is associated with heavy varroa mite infestation. You need to do a mite count to determine your level of infestation which I would guess is high. Then administer an appropriate treatment for varroa mites. Otherwise you are going to lose this hive over the winter, if not sooner. I would suggest that you buy the book "Beekeeping for Dummies". It is an excellent, modern how-to book on beekeeping.
Last edited by Sherpa1; 08-15-2007 at 06:47 PM.
I have been putting on the sticky board, without anything sticky. I put it under for a 24hr period about every other week. I have in the past , seen a mite or two. I have not seen any lately. I would think if it were high, I would be seeing more mites, or does the sticky stuff really make that much difference. I have some powdered sugar and can do that easily. What is a good sticky substance to use?
A nice thin coat of vegetable oil should work very well as the "sticky" surface.
In the past I've just sprayed some 'Pam' or something like it on the surface of the board but recently I read someone who said that the spray on wouldn't keep all the mites in place. Anybody see anything wrong with using spray on veg. oil?
elements of varroatosis
take one quart of mineral oil and mix in 1 tbls of wintergreen oil syn. and fog the bees late in the afternoon through a tube until the colony is fully saturated with fog coming out all cracks in the hive, a handy tube is the handle off a cheap mop or broom, use something to hold it with however as it could get hot, also flatten the end of the tube so it can slide up in the hive entrance slightly. do this once a week for three weeks, once every 5-7 days and this should eliminate the mites and also clear up the varroatosis for the rest of the year. this will work well if the bees have some tolerance already.