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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Baltimore, Maryland, USA
    Posts
    49

    Default EEK! Wax Moth larvae!

    Installing my second deep this morning, I saw a larvae in a thin silky cocoon in the inside ledge of my top cover. Thinking it was inert, I scraped it out but left it intact on the cinder blocks the hive sits on. (I was planning to return later and take a picture for reference). When I returned the cocoon was empty, and the larvae was gone.

    Can't say for sure that it was a waxmoth larvae. It was white, and about 3/4of an inch long, but to be honest, when it comes to larvae, they pretty much all look the same to me.

    This is the first I've seen of this.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Greensboro, N.C.
    Posts
    5,080

    Default

    Get used to it, it won't be the last.

    Wax moths are just a part of beekeeping. They try to multiply, you and the bees try to reduce or eliminate. It is an ongoing game and will be for eternity. They are not a serious problem in a strong hive. They can become devastating to a weak hive. Just remove them when you see them and keep your hives strong.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Lexington, NC
    Posts
    68

    Default

    You are not alone. This is just my second year keeping bees and I have had a very problem hive this year and would have caused me to stop keeping them if this would have been my first year. Now I am just too stuborn to let them die. I have been trying to nurse them back to healthy status and when I checked them yesterday after stopping a major robbing problem I found that nearly the entire bottom hive is being eat by wax moth larva. So I am back to square one with this hive and had to reduce them back to one hive body and will be adding brood from another hive tomarrow and freezing all the combs that have been effected.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    College Station, Texas
    Posts
    6,973

    Default

    lanier74 writes:
    Now I am just too stuborn to let them die.

    tecumseh replies: now that's the proper attitude for a beekeeper.

    mike the rookie sezs:
    I saw a larvae in a thin silky cocoon in the inside ledge of my top cover.

    tecumseh replies: technically I think at that stage it is called a pupae.. the larvae stage is a bit earlier.

    I would keep an eye peeled on this hive. most times where there is one there is many. look for spider like webbing between frames, plus any kind of excessive trash accumulating on the bottom board (either of these 'signs' suggest serious wax moth problems).

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Baltimore, Maryland, USA
    Posts
    49

    Default

    I will definitely keep an eye out for all the warning signs, and eliminate any pupae or larvae that I encounter. On one hand, I am somewhat concerned because I noticed it as I was installing a second deep, so there is all that empty, unprotected space for the larvae to infiltrate. On the other hand, I am using plastic frames, which I have heard provides some protection against waxmoth infestation.

    Anyway you slice it, I had to add the super, wax moths or no, as the girls were getting very crowded. (all ten framed in the first super filled).

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Greenville, TX, USA
    Posts
    4,208

    Default

    All the wax moth larva I have seen have been in a hard shell. The web type cocoons are usually spider larva. Being on the ledge of the top cover instead of in a corner inside the box also makes me think spider or something else, not wax moth.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Baltimore, Maryland, USA
    Posts
    49

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Ross View Post
    All the wax moth larva I have seen have been in a hard shell. The web type cocoons are usually spider larva. Being on the ledge of the top cover instead of in a corner inside the box also makes me think spider or something else, not wax moth.

    I really don't think it could be a spider larvae. It was cylindrical, and had little nub legs like a caterpillar. I was given to understand that spider larvae looked much more like full grown spiders.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Greenville, TX, USA
    Posts
    4,208

    Default

    wax moths lay their eggs on the comb, not outside.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Johnson City, TN
    Posts
    217

    Default

    [QUOTE=Lanier74I found that nearly the entire bottom hive is being eat by wax moth larva. .[/QUOTE]

    Does this hive have a queen, eggs and brood? It sounds to me like this hive is queenless and has dwindled down to practically nothing. The bees you see in the hive are robbers and the wax moths have taken over.
    Bee just and just bee

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Starkville,Ms,USA
    Posts
    516

    Default

    I was given to understand that spider larvae looked much more like full grown spiders.
    That is correct. Spiders do not have larvae. The babies are fully formed versions of the adults in miniature.

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