Testing for Nosema
I was reading Jim Fischer's article in the latest BC and he suggests testing for nosema that can be done using a microscope.
Anyone know more detail as to how to do that? How many bees per hive do you look at? How do you prepare the bee to examine her?
I haven't read Jim fisher's article, but heres a link to directions for testing for Nosema.
It seams pretty complicated and it doesn't give any definite numbers as far as whats a bad infestation or when to treat, but it would be interesting to try it.
For the love of bees
What? Someone actually READS my articles?
Give me a moment to catch my breath...
... ok... yeah, those directions are very complete
and very complex. They are "lab grade". But they
are easy enough to follow. Order what you can't
get from the High School Chemistry teacher and/or
from the pharmacy from Fisher Scientific (no relation,
not even spelled right) [SIZE=-1]www.fishersci.com[/SIZE]
As to numbers, Eric Mussen (the expert on Nosema)
says that for every one spore ("paramecium") you see,
there are at least 10,000 in that same drop of liquid that
you won't see with a student-grade microscope.
It is possible to do your own counting AND send the
remainder of the bees you sampled off to a lab to
compare your count with an official count, but I've
got an easier answer for this year:
Given all the nosema seen, and the extent of the
infections found in most hives, I'd treat everything
in sight if I saw ANY Nosema in ANY samples.
Learn the elegant stuff as you get time, but for now,
when in doubt, assume you have Nosema, 'cause
everyone else seems to have it.
Dr. Oertel and Nosema
Dr. Oertel use to call nosema "no-see-um." I helped Dr. E. Oertel look for nosema disease in 1965 as a teenage research assistant at the Southern States Bee Lab (Bee Breeding Lab)in Baton Rouge. As I remember, I collected live bee samples at the entrance of each colony. Dr. Oertel would freeze the bees and the next day I would pull the bees apart from the rear end using a jewelers’ tweezers. I would separate the gut from the nectar sac and I would put the gut on a glass slide. I would then add some distilled water and mash the gut. Dr. Oertel would look for Nosema using a binocular microscope.
Last edited by JC; 10-09-2007 at 06:14 PM.
Are people recommending fumigillan-B as a preventative?
Is there an easy way of staining the samples to make nosema more visible, or would this make the test too complicated?