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Thread: Shb eggs ? !?

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default Shb eggs ? !?

    Around here, we have all been told that when you harvest honey supers.. extract them quickly..dont leave them laying around in the honey house for several days. The hive beetles will lay eggs and ruin your crop. This week a non-beekeeper asked me a question. "Well, since you can certainly end up with a couple of beetles in those harvested supers.. what if they do lay an egg or have already prior to you extracting.. what happens to the egg ? Would they hatch out in the honey ?

    It got me to thinking... if we extract a frame of honey that does have a SHB egg on it.. where does it go ? Caught in the bowl strainer I certainly hope

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Thaxton, Mississippi
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    Default Re: Shb eggs ? !?

    That is a good question. I have never thought about it. Everytime I extract I see a few beetles but have never seen larva in any of my hives. Wish I could help, maybe someone will give us an answer.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Shb eggs ? !?

    The SHB eggs are pearly white and about 1.5 x 0.25 mm, two-thirds the size of honey bee eggs so if your filter or screen will filter that size you are good to go. I put my honey in the freezer for 48 hours to kill any eggs or larvae that may be in the honey.
    Just some thoughts.

  4. #4
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    Williston, NC, USA
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    Default Re: Shb eggs ? !?

    I was just asking Adolphus Leonard, our State Inspector, this question yesterday. They will be strained out, but it's best if the frame is frozen first and then thawed and extracted. I'm so fearful of these little buggers now that I freeze all my honey frames before extracting.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Shb eggs ? !?

    "They will be strained out, but it's best if the frame is frozen first and then thawed and extracted."

    Tia,
    Wouldn't it be just as effective to freeze the jars of honey insted of freezing frames thawing and extracting?
    Just some thoughts.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Shb eggs ? !?

    Oh man ! No way do I have the time/space to freeze each frame in 15 honey supers.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Shb eggs ? !?

    Ski, the purpose of freezing the frames is to kill the eggs on the frames. I'm not so worried about eggs in the honey because they'll be strained out. But after you've extracted, the frames aren't completely dry and the SHB eggs can hatch and feed on that remaining honey. Then when you store the boxes, they can have a party at your expense.

    CD, I hear you. . .I must confess, I bought a chest freezer specifically for the task of freezing all my supers. I fill it up, let it set for 24-36 hrs, and when I take them out, I move on to the next batch. Actually, it goes faster than you might think. I just hate those little buggers so much, I don't want to take any chances!

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Shb eggs ? !?

    The eggs will only be screened out if your screen mesh is 0.25 mm or smaller otherwise there will be eggs in your honey and making a blanket statement that they will be screened out assumes everyone uses the right size screen as you do.

    so it sounds like you store wet supers.
    One could also put the supers back on the hive above the inner cover to be cleaned by the hive. SHB eggs hatch in 2-6 days so after that period they can be taken off and stored without SHB problems.

    The supers could also be sprayed with BT to eliminate any larvae damage from SHB or wax moth.

    So freezing frames is not the ONLY route you can take.
    Just some thoughts.

  9. #9
    Join Date
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    Palm Bay, FL, USA
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    Default Re: Shb eggs ? !?

    BT spray does not have any effect on SHB larva. Sorry!

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Shb eggs ? !?

    Stix, thanks for the correction, guess I got carried away.
    Just some thoughts.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Shb eggs ? !?

    Ski, no, I don't store wet supers. I always give them back to the girls to clean up, but as you said, shb eggs hatch in 2-6 days and if you don't freeze the frames, you've got shb hatching in your hives which is exactly what you're trying to avoid.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Shb eggs ? !?

    Tia,
    SHB eat brood pollen and honey, they will tunnel through the wax to get to other cells of honey or pollen but they do not eat the wax. SO if you are letting the bees clean up the supers before storing there is little to no honey left for the small hive beetle, and if they are honey supers there would be very little to no pollen or brood. So if the eggs do hatch what will they eat? The risks and damage should be low.

    This year I left my honey supers out in the open for the bees to clean up and when they were done there wasn't any honey left. I have also left honey supers out side under a roof and they were cleaned by the bees but never bothered by the wax moth or SHB.
    Once again Freezing is not the only way but maybe one of the beast ways if you have the freezer and only a few hives.

    Tia this thread has been fun and it made me review some stuff I had forgotten.
    Ski
    Just some thoughts.

  13. #13
    Join Date
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    Pickens, SC, USA
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    Default Re: Shb eggs ? !?

    Well guys, I see what you are saying but that still leaves my original question. I'm not worried about the stored supers.

    Assuming the standard plastic bowl filter is not small enough to strain out the eggs...and that most folks probably dont freeze their frames before extracting... I've never heard of anyone having hive beetle larve hatch in their honey.. could be because of the low humidty "moisture level" of the honey

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    Default Re: Shb eggs ? !?

    "because of the low humidity "moisture level" of the honey "

    Could be, maybe because there is no air to let the egg breath and then hatch, I don't know.
    But I have had more then one old beekeeper tell me and I also heard it at the North Carolina State Beekeepers meeting workshops that it is a good idea to freeze the jars of honey. Wish I would have asked some questions.

    Maybe some others will chime in with some better answers.
    Just some thoughts.

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