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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Jefferson Co,WV, USA
    Posts
    88

    Default the down side of nucs (SHB)

    I found one of the down sides of nucs that I should have realized. you can get pests w/ your bees. one of the colonies has SHB I found one dead the first week on the sticky board since then I found one each of the last of the 2 times I opened the hive or checked the sticky board

    the girls I got are great I can go down to the hives in just shorts and pull sticky boards inspect them wipe them off and reinsert them w/o any guards coming out and open them w/o smoke to look at the feeder and only get 1 bee buzzing my head (the same one of the russians every time) and maybe headbutt me so I have no complaints on the bees

    I will not put anything in the hives that I would not put into my own mouth so I would like some suggestions on treatment options and effectiveness also anyone know or use the round traps I have seen used in Europe
    I always pass on good advice. It is the only thing to do with it. It is never of any use to oneself. - Oscar Wilde

  2. #2

    Default

    Our state apiarist recommends using a beetle trap made with 5/8" pvc pipe capped at both ends with small holes (too small for bees) drilled around the the cap on one end. Fill with oil. Beetles enter the holes seeing a safe place to hide from bees and drown in the oil.

    Put the pipe standing up in a corner of the hive.

    I hope this helps,
    -Erin
    Erin Forbes, EAS Master Beekeeper
    overlandhoney.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    College Station, Texas
    Posts
    6,973

    Default

    are you suggesting that you cannot get shb in packages?

    I suspect that you can get them in almost any form of bees sold.

    the real question is whether the shb will or will not overwinter at your location. soil type at the hives location plus freezing weather I suspect are a good part of the answer to this question.

    I have also suggest to a couple of fellow bee keepers that the screened bottom board seems to attrack the shb in greater number. this could??? work out as an advantage for manage the shb in areas where they are active.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Lake county, Indiana 46408-4109
    Posts
    3,536

    Default

    I suspect that you can get them in almost any form of bees sold.
    You supect right I had them crawling out the back of my truck last yeat when we picked up 78 packages from the west coast.
    Ed, KA9CTT profanity is IGNORANCE made audible
    you can`t fix stupid not even with duct tape

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    26,791

    Default

    Tod, I wouldn't sweat a couple of SHBs, if I were you. I seriously doubt that they will become a problem for you in WV. Unless your colony is really weak for some other reason. I see very few SHBs in my hives here in SC and when they get back to NY I almost never see them at all. I have never had a colony that has been taken over by SHB.

    One of the hives that I left here over the summer in SC had a couple of dozen SHBs when I got back to see them in November. But there weren't any slimy larvae anywhere to be seen.

    I just treat them like the occasional wax moth and give them the hivetool test when I can get at them. Otherwise, I don't give them any thought.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Hays, Kansas, USA
    Posts
    1,080

    Default

    I'm thinking that if I had a choice, a nuc is where I'd rather see SHB. The colony can control them in a confined space more easily than in an overwintered double 10-frame hive set-up.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    College Station, Texas
    Posts
    6,973

    Default

    as swobee seem to suggest controlling excess space is the first significant factor in controlling the shb.

    other consideration... limit or burn poorly made or rotten equipment, pick up dead out promptly (these are excellent if you get some government contract to porduce the shb in great numbers), feed and boost weak nucs.

    ps.. a down side of deeps split into doubles is that if one side begins generating shb the other half of the box will likely perish fairly quickly also. just causally (no real data here but it does appear that way to me) a weak spit with excessive pollen seems to be a larger problem than a weak split with excessive honey.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Jackson, MO
    Posts
    1,858

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tecumseh View Post
    the real question is whether the shb will or will not overwinter at your location. soil type at the hives location plus freezing weather I suspect are a good part of the answer to this question.
    Adult SHB will overwinter very nicely in a winter cluster.

    Grant
    Jackson, MO
    Beekeeping With Twenty-five Hives: https://www.createspace.com/4152725

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Brisbane, Australia
    Posts
    141

    Default

    If you have 1 SHB you will find that it has lots of mates. I lost my only 2 hives to the SHB last spring and they went from healthy hives to being overcome in 2 weeks. There is no way I will leave a hive unprotected. I now have bottom board oil traps in all my hives including nucs.

    I purchased a nuc this fall and it came with SHB. I also caught 4 swarms and all of them came with SHB.

    There are always dead SHB in the oil traps and sometimes an adult larva.

    I believe that half the battle is to have bees cover all the frames as the SHB has to negotiate bees wherever it goes as compared to having nice empty spaces or cells to hide in with bare comb.

    It does not take long for the SHB to takeover a hive if they get the chance to do so. For example I wont put stickies back onto a hive as they give the beetle a place to hide and the bees are unable to be as vigilant as they need to be with frames to clean up. Instead I allow them to be cleaned up well away from the hives and replace built out frames only when I can see that the girls need space for nectar. My hive entrance openings at the moment are .5" x 3-4" hopefully giving the guard bees some control over what comes into the hive. Even so I end up with 20 - 30 in the oil traps when I clear the every 2 weeks. I would not want that many live beetle actively laying in my hives.

    Dont take the SHB lightly. They are absolutely devastating if they get the opportunity and once you have cleaned up a hive that has been lost to them you will never want to do another on. Trust me on that.

    Mick

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Lavaca county, Texas
    Posts
    497

    Default

    My observations on SHB have made me wonder about my bees.

    The hive most likely to have beetles and larvae is the friendly one, the one I can open and inspect w/o veil or smoke.

    The hive that NEVER has SHB is the one with the guard bees that come out and greet me. "Advance and be recognized!!"

    I have pondered whether the level of alert, proactive, assertiveness correlates to the tolerance of SHB. Tecumseh, any thoughts, Sir?

    Summer

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Starkville,Ms,USA
    Posts
    516

    Default

    I have often wondered how it is possible to make nucs here in the South without them being quickly overcome with SHB. I had a nuc-size hive get wiped out last year by them and can't imagine how anyone can make splits or nucs without a trap that covers the bottom board.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Auburn, AL USA
    Posts
    104

    Default

    It's all in the timing of the split. You have to split the bees when the bees want to be split. You can't make a split just 'cause you want to. You have to respect the bees and the time of year.

    Will

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Brisbane, Australia
    Posts
    141

    Default

    Summer, I think that a lot of it depends not on how docile your bees are to you and the surrounding environment but more so on their aggressiveness towards the SHB. In my 3 hives I use a minimum of smoke and wear a veil only. I dont often get head butted and rarely stung and this only when I accidently roll a bee.

    But all the hives are aggressive towards the SHB, with the girls trying to sting them as they herd them around.

    In some ways you are probably correct but I would be interested in how aggressive the girls in your docile hive/s towards the SHB. If you see lots of SHB running around without bees chasing them then I would imagine this hive is in trouble and it needs a queen from more defensive stock. But if it is more proactive in herding and attacking the SHB then I would expect that with support (traps supplied) then it would be ok.

    I just dont think any of us can take the SHB lightly knowing what they can do if they get the opportunity.

    Mick

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Starkville,Ms,USA
    Posts
    516

    Default

    When is a good time to split?

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