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Thread: small cell

  1. #41
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    >Sounds so good. But don't forget the many comments made by you over the years that included losing hives while regressing, perhaps taking several years.

    I try to offer the worst case senario. I lost them when I started regressing late in the year and I tried to treat with Apistan that fall and still couldn't save them. But it has not taken me several years to regress. Some people, however, have said it did take them some time.

    >And then there is the breeding from survivors along the way.

    When I started I had no ferals and every year I've been expanding with packages and some of my small cell hives in the outyards are probably still commercial queens from some of those. They still have no problems. Dennis has mostly commercial queens on small cell with no problems.

    > Throw in some ferals and other stock along the way. And in the end, I'm sure your bees were different from when you started.

    In my home yard, NOW, yes they are different. Yes I think feral survivors are helpful, but I did not find them necessary.

    >But I guess "regressed, and mite problems disappear" sounds better. Never mind that its a subtle change from "mites went away" to "mite problems went away (disappear)". I'm sure many will making that change in future comments.

    As I posted earlier, I tried to find a dead mite on a tray this last month to show a group of newbees and after searching five trays for several minutes that had been in for a month or so I couldn't find one. And as I said before, every spring the inspector can't find one either. I would have to say I have a lot less mites than when I was on large cell and treating for them.
    http://www.bushfarms.com/beescerts.htm

    The point is that it's the long term that matters and the big picture that matters. So far we have a short term study that says you'll have more bees and the number of mites won't be different in the first year on small cell when they are all kept in the same apiary. For me that still leaves a lot of questions.

    >At least we have stopped openly commenting that smallcell takes care of everything under the sun to include afb, etc.

    Hmmmm... Having never had AFB I don't know, but if Grout's research is correct and the bees chew out cells once they fall below a certain threshold and since that threshold involves a lot less cocoons in small cell, and since spores could build up in those layers of cocoons, I can see that it might make a lot of difference on AFB.
    Last edited by Michael Bush; 10-28-2007 at 07:59 AM.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  2. #42
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    I don't take the time to count mites.I'm to busy.How about Dee Lusby's experiment with small cell She has doing bees for over twenty years now with small cell and no treatments.
    I like small cell because I didn't want to consume honey from a contaminated hive or sell honey from a contaminated hive.I also Like the idea of bees getting resistive to mites because they ain't going away.I on't find much benefit in argueing the pro's and con's on
    small cell people seem to do what they want.I just do small cell and no treatment because I feel better about it.I know Charles Martin Simmon had success also with natural cell size.Unfortunatley he Passed away this month
    kirkobeeo
    I like bugs

  3. #43
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    So far nobody has lost a hive of small cell bees due to varroa?

  4. #44
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    How does small cell stop the production of mites?

  5. #45
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    Bizzy,
    Research has shown smallcell does NOT STOP the production of mites.

  6. #46
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    >Research has shown smallcell does NOT STOP the production of mites.

    Hmmmm. Not mine nor many others... but that seems to be the results of Jennifer Berry's one experiment.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  7. #47
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    MB,
    First, smallcell "stop mites or at least some decreased (suppressed) amount", then in discussing J Berry's results within this very thread, its suggested that its not the mite levels that ANYONE ever mentioned but the "impact" of the mites. And now were right back to taking the claim from suppressing mites (or the effect of mites) to claiming small cell stops the mite production altogether. This is getting ridiculous! I could see one suggesting a decrease in mite production, or even the personal observation that mite effects/impacts are decreased, but to suggest that smallcell totally STOPS mite production is wrong.

    I find it ironic that many can show success without smallcell as some suggest with smallcell, but for some reason, those on smallcell only attribute that success to this one factor. Even when a long called for study suggests otherwise. And now its somehow being downplayed as "one" experiment.

    BTW MB, my comments about AFB were in response to my recollection of AFB claims and comments by you in regards to D. Lusby's AFB hype and claims. Remember, she had AFB, went to smallcell and changed over ALL her comb, and then claimed smallcell was the reason for the AFB going away? I do! But anyone giving it a second of thought could see that changing the comb was the primary factor.

    Now its onto this Grout's research. But you don't sound so confident. You mention "if" his research is correct, hmmmm. And this whole theory is based on "if" the bees change over the comb, "Perhaps" AFB could be controlled by new comb, etc. Your really reaching on this one! To suggest that smallcell should be relied upon or even considered as a control for afb, factors in way too many variables to even suggest that ANY effectiveness is reliable. How often does smallcell change over? The timing would have to be in complete sync with afb outbreaks, etc. hardly something not worth mentioning and promoting.

    I would think that promoting and educating people as to comb rotation would be a more up front and honest approach. Instead of somehow taking a very far reaching concept of AFB control (as if bees change comb over regularly with smallcell on a level to be effective) and using it as some justification and promotion of smallcell.

    But I guess with the shrinking evidence and research now questioning all the past claims of smallcell, I guess one must cling to anything possible.

    BTW MB, I read in Oct 07 Bee Culture, "Blog" article, that you keep and promote natural cell beekeeping. But yet it seems that every smallcell conversation has you centered in the middle. As if your promoting smallcell much more than natural cell. They are two different things. I know, you'll now be labeling the different types of comb as "more this" or "more that". Smallcell is not natural comb.

    So smallcell is an effective control for AFB. It totally STOPS the production of mites. What other magical claims are we going to hear today.....
    Last edited by BjornBee; 10-29-2007 at 06:58 AM.

  8. #48
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    <I don't think you can say only one thing is involved>

    Michael,

    I think this statement nails down the root of most of our problems, including CCD. I guess that is where the word INTEGRATED comes from when we talk about pest control. Trouble is we need to find most of the significant factors before we can integrate them into a program and we are a long way from there.
    doug

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by BjornBee View Post
    MB,
    First, smallcell "stop mites or at least some decreased (suppressed) amount"
    Please show where this quote came from.

    This is getting ridiculous! I could see one suggesting a decrease in mite production, or even the personal observation that mite effects/impacts are decreased, but to suggest that smallcell totally STOPS mite production is wrong.
    There is absolutely nothing wrong with me or anyone else sharing what we see in our hives. If we don't see mites, we don't see them. Draw whatever conclusion you want, but to make it look as if I or Michael have said "small cell totally STOPS mite production" is totally false.

    - Barry

  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by beemandan View Post
    As an aside, in conjunction with the small cell study, Cindy Bee, a highly respected beekeeper and bee remover, brought out many dozens of feral brood combs from her removals. Out of the 40+ samples so far, I believe, Jennifer said that only a couple were less than 5mm. Most were 5.2+. Cindy, by the way, is one of the beekeepers I know who has never treated and does not use small cell.
    First, anyone who is a bee remover and integrates the removed stock into their colonies has other dynamics/influences going on than someone like myself who simply keeps the stock I have. At what rate are new bees being integrated and what affect does this have on the treatment free outcome? I don't know. My experience is simply keeping my local stock of bees on SC.

    Secondly, I have older brood comb from a bee tree that is mostly 4.9 cell size. In the cutouts I've done, I have always found sections of comb that have had 4.9 cell size, even smaller. What we know about bees needing to regress (even Jennifer Berry mentioned this and supported the need to regress before the study) before we see consistency in comb building, It would only reason that escaped LC bees would not immediately construct SC's. The mere presence of 4.9 cells within cutout combs, even if the minority, tell a story. Dennis Murrell found that his bees could still manage fine with a mix of cell sizes, but the SC was present.

    Thirdly, to try and make a claim as TWT has and Cindy Bee that beekeepers can use the long standing equipment (LC comb) and be successful keeping bees without ANY treatments or unusual manipulations for many years deserves to be headline news. In fact I think I'll put that on the home page of Beesource. I don't know why all the hubbub with 99 percent of beekeepers not being able to do this. I think Jennifer Berry did a study on the wrong bee hives!

    - Barry

  11. #51
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    Does anyone have a link yet for published results of Berry's study? I'd like to read through it.

    If this turns out to be correct (numbers of mites are not significantly different between commerical-size and smaller-size cells), and survival would be significantly different, then I think we need to go back to the "mite-population/survival" correlation. We likely need to throw out the thresholds that have been established, then. I wonder what would cause a difference in survival rates, if not the populations of mites?

  12. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kieck View Post
    If this turns out to be correct (numbers of mites are not significantly different between commerical-size and smaller-size cells),
    At this point, only one person (Jennifer Berry) is saying/seeing this. I know a handful of beekepers on SC who find little to no mites in their hives. How to explain the gap, I don't know.

    - Barry

  13. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barry View Post
    Please show where this quote came from.



    There is absolutely nothing wrong with me or anyone else sharing what we see in our hives. If we don't see mites, we don't see them. Draw whatever conclusion you want, but to make it look as if I or Michael have said "small cell totally STOPS mite production" is totally false.

    - Barry
    Barry, are you reading the same thread as me?

    Your asking me to provide quotes as if some how suggesting that NOBODY had never commented on claims of smallcell decreasing mite. The whole thing about "smallcell has shorter capping times, and thus fewer mites" has been commented over and over again on this board. I'm not going to waste my time and bother digging through thousands of posts to satisfy this request. It been said many times.

    As for your second comment, someone asked how smallcell STOPS mite production. I commented that IT DOES NOT. MB himself came back and commented, suggesting this is not true as to what I have said, and seems to suggest that it true in his hives. ("nor many others")

    I have never heard this comment, never seen a report to suggest this, and goes against everything ever previously said. MB's own website mentions his elimination of mite "problems". Now its been expanded to include the TOTAL elimination of ANY mite reproduction as a result of using smallcell. Hogwash in my opinion.

    Making broad comments about elimination of mite reproduction on an open forum disguised as "personal" observations, and thus warranted as worthy, may be OK with you. I just hope you don't feel an honest rebuttal is not worthy just the same.

    If MB now has crossed the line and has gone on record that smallcell totally eliminates mite reproduction, then so be it. That is exactly what he has said. I won't dispute what he see's in his own hive. I will dispute his throwing in "others" in his observation, and the basis for the comment on the primary matter. Mites DO in fact reproduce in smallcell. To suggest otherwise is wrong.
    Last edited by BjornBee; 10-29-2007 at 10:51 AM.

  14. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by BjornBee View Post
    Your asking me to provide quotes as if some how suggesting that NOBODY had never commented on claims of smallcell decreasing mite.
    I'm interested in the first part of your quote "stop mites."

    MB's own website mentions his elimination of mite "problems".
    This is as far as I will go with what I see in my hives.

    I just hope you don't feel an honest rebuttal is not worthy just the same.
    Not at all. But I think it is very important to be clear on exactly what is meant by certain words said and quoted.

    If MB now has crossed the line and has gone on record that smallcell totally eliminates mite reproduction, then so be it. That is exactly what he has said. I won't dispute what he see's in his own hive. I will dispute his throwing in "others" in his observation, and the basis for the comment on the primary matter. Mites DO in fact reproduce in smallcell. To suggest otherwise is wrong.
    If he has said this, "totally eliminates mite reproduction", then they are his words describing his hives. I have no basis to make this claim for myself as I don't test for this.

    - Barry

  15. #55
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    Barry, my comment was,

    "stop mites or at least some decreased (suppressed) amount".

    Taking the two words from the sentence and the overall point, misses the point.

    I fail to see the importance of scrutinizing this first point, when the same point was just recently made anyways.

    I was suggesting that over the years, we have heard many claims. Certainly "stops mites" can be thrown into that broad comment suggesting anything from control, to stopping the effects of damage, etc.

    But my point was that we went from controlling mites (less mites in smallcell due to capped times), to then suggesting that with J Berry's report, that its not really the "count" of the mites but the impact that's important, to now going as far as to suggest that mite do not reproduce in smallcell at all.

    Hope this helps.

  16. #56

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    Quote Originally Posted by Barry View Post
    Thirdly, to try and make a claim as TWT has and Cindy Bee that beekeepers can use the long standing equipment (LC comb) and be successful keeping bees without ANY treatments or unusual manipulations for many years deserves to be headline news. In fact I think I'll put that on the home page of Beesource. I don't know why all the hubbub with 99 percent of beekeepers not being able to do this. I think Jennifer Berry did a study on the wrong bee hives!
    - Barry
    Tell me that I've misinterpreted your statement. It sounds to me like you are implying that TWT and Cindy Bee are being untruthful. Could you clarify?
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  17. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by BjornBee View Post
    Barry, my comment was,

    "stop mites or at least some decreased (suppressed) amount".

    Taking the two words from the sentence and the overall point, misses the point.

    I fail to see the importance of scrutinizing this first point, when the same point was just recently made anyways.
    It's very important as you are making a case out of it. Some of us are simply telling you what we see in our hives and your interest is in creating some kind of conflict here.

    Here are Michael's words in this thread:

    "I would have to say I have a lot less mites than when I was on large cell and treating for them."

    "I have trouble finding any Varroa now"

    "What I do know is with small cell I can't even find one mite on my trays to show people"

    Now, one can spin this how they want, but he has not said "absolutely zero mites in the hive".

    But my point was that we went from controlling mites (less mites in smallcell due to capped times), to then suggesting that with J Berry's report, that its not really the "count" of the mites but the impact that's important, to now going as far as to suggest that mite do not reproduce in smallcell at all.
    There are less mites, we see that as an obvious fact in our hives. Berry's report means different things to different people. Those of us (I'll speak for myself here) who have been using SC for years know that a one year study like this is very limited in scope and has findings directly opposite our hives. Deal with it. Make it mean whatever you want, but it doesn't change the facts. What we don't know for sure is the "why" question.

    - Barry

  18. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by beemandan View Post
    Tell me that I've misinterpreted your statement.
    Dan -

    Maybe I misinterpreted your statement!

    No, I don't want to imply that they are untruthful. Perhaps not fully giving us the story. I want to make a point that simply stating:

    "I started beekeeping in 04, bought 3 packages of Kona's and started doing removals (kona's have past), I have never treated a hive in my life, never even saw one be treated, I am not on small cell and never done a sugar shake or even a mite count and my bee's live fine"

    and

    "I, too, know several beeks who maintain untreated hives using traditional cell."

    and

    "Cindy, by the way, is one of the beekeepers I know who has never treated and does not use small cell."

    and not giving us all the details means little. How do they "maintain" them? I've been around long enough to know that most often we hear only part of the story that supports the claim without hearing all the other details. If in fact these claims are true, it ought to be headline news in all the bee mags. This just doesn't happen in my world.

    - Barry

  19. #59
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    I have no idea what sc does or doesn't do, I have never used it. I do have successful bees on lc. I read and hear more every month about others that are having more success on lc. I have read hundreds of posts here and on other sites about how people keep their bees.

    Quoted by Barry>>>>without ANY treatments or unusual manipulations for many years<<<<

    I do not and will not believe there is a beek in the usa who uses sc or lc and does nothing else to help or support their hive. That quote looks to be a PMA to me. It defies a reply of any kind.

    Certainly sc bees will have reduced mites if the bees are developing a natural resistance to mites. They will do the same on lc or natural comb. So why credit one item when there are multiple things going on in the hives.

    I also notice Barry didn't come back on my untreated LC hives after I said all my treating was on my removals. I wonder why.

  20. #60
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    Check out "The Jennifer Berry Report" below.

    http://www.heartlandbees.com/index.htm
    Last edited by MichaelW; 10-29-2007 at 01:18 PM.

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