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  1. #41
    Join Date
    May 2008
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    Port Orange, Florida, USA
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    218

    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    I've been battling SHB in my hives since I moved to Florida. One thing that I have found that really works is to take a screened bottom board and put it over a plastic tray or container that has about 1/2 inch of soapy water in it. When I open up a hive and find a frame with SHBs on it I'll smack both sides of the frame off the screened bottom board. The bees bounce off the screen and fly away a little POed while the SHB's fall through the screen and drown in the soapy water. I was able to kill about 300 SHBs in one of my hives in under a week. I was checking the hive every two or three days and was just pulling the two outside frames in the top box where the bees were herding the SHBs. I also use Beetle Blasters in all my hives but being able to just go in and clear out an infestation when you see it really keeps the SHBs under control. Every time I open my hives I'll have my SHB death trap ready to use, I just love counting the dead beetles floating in the soapy water at the end of the day. It's a quick and cheap way to knock SHB's out of a hive, after all you are already in the hive performing a inspection anyways. My first design was a frame made out of 1x2's screened over with 1/4 hardware screen which worked fine, I just starting using a SBB this year to see if it holds up. I have heard that using diatomatous earth around the base of the hive will kill the larva stage as it crawls out of the hive and across the ground before it pupates.

  2. #42
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
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    Limestone Co, Alabama
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    1,674

    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    I hear an adult beetle can fly 5 miles at a stretch just getting to your place.
    Scrapfe---Never believe anything in politics until it has been officially denied.--Otto von Bismarck.

  3. #43

    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    Here is a good link I thank it will be some good reading on SHB.
    http://entomology.ifas.ufl.edu/creat...ive_beetle.htm

  4. #44
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    Jul 2011
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    Crenshaw County, Alabama
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    1,897

    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    Quote Originally Posted by rrussell6870 View Post
    Scrapfe,

    Entrance reducers are a great help in beetle control... of course during swarm season, they need to be open... baited traps, clean bee yards, good tops, and a mixture of full sun and afternoon shade are huge helps as well... keep in mind that its the pollen that the beetles are attracted by and the jelly in the brood cells that they want to eat most...
    Rather than full sun all day you believe that shade in the afternoon is good then? I'm debating on placement of my new bee yard. There is a stand of pine trees on the west end of the property that gives me the option of having afternoon shade or not (move the bee yard closer or further away from the trees). I can vary the timing of the shade from right after noon until late in the afternoon. I'm weighing the pros and cons of having some late afternoon shade. If you have more thoughts on afternoon shade I would love to hear them, Dr. Russell.

    Thanks,
    Ed

  5. #45
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Brandon, MS USA
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    1,585

    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    Absolutely Ed. For those of us in the south, our bees have to contend with the heat just as much as they have to contend with shb... in the full sun in MS the internal temperature of a hive can reach 120+ degrees... that is too hot for optimal bee health... adding stresses such as these can leave your bees vulnerable to other threats as well... sure the higher temps are not preferred by shb or varroa, but keeping these pests under control is not our main goal in bee keeping... our main goal is to keep healthy, productive bees... I have seen hives in southern Louisiana with comb literally melting and running out the entrance of the hives because the bee keeper had been told to go with full sun to keep shb out... guess where all the bees were.. that's right, in trees in a nearby pine thicket.. fully shaded and much happier trying to start all over with no stores, walls, roof, or comb than they were in the hives... when we broke down the equipment, we found that it was primarily the freshest brood combs that had completely melted away and that when the bees absconded, the beetles still moved in... within 6 days time, all 120 hives were slimed and that poor fellow had to replace every single comb in every hive and completely start from scratch... yes bees are tropical creatures, and have gotten air circulation in their hives down to a perfect science... but, add a metal top, full southern sun, low or no breeze blowing, and a steamy high humidity level to the equation and you may find yourself in a bind very quickly... Especially for those that use natural cell and/or cycle out dark brood comb that is less than 5 seasons old. So many people seem to over look the fact that shb is a tropical creature as well... so it can adapt to the heat well, especially in the sort amount of time that it needs to do its job... to add to that, shb HAVE to find a place to reproduce, its a very strong instinct for insects and in many cases its even more powerful than the instinct to feed... bee hives provide the resources necessary for shb to fulfil both of these needs at once, so putting ul with the heat is not beyond them if there are no easier targets in close proximity... that goes both ways though... some seem to remember that shb are tropical creatures, and thus do not feel concerned about them reaching the northern regions... but again, one must remember that the bees are also tropical creatures, so if you can keep bees in your climate, shb can make it there to... especially when one considers that shb will live within the clusters of the hive and even be fed by the bees throughout winter, only to destroy the colony in spring... a recent study using internal hive cameras to observe the activities of shb within the cluster during the winter revealed that when the temps were cold enough to case the bees to become still in the cluster, the shb were still moving around undaunted... it was actually around 12 degrees colder before the beetles became as dormant as the bees... that should tell us something right there... shb may very well be more adaptive to temperature variations than the honey bees that they prey on... scary thought...

    As for your situation, I would suggest staying out from the trees (hopefully they are tall trees thus casting a long shadow so you do not have to be terribly close to the woodline to receive the shelter of its shade) just far enough that shade starts to reach your hives between 1pm & 3 pm and continues on from there. The earliest morning sun is great for production (but doesn't give the bee keeper much of a cool period to work hives in during summer), and the afternoon shade will give them a chance to cool thongs down a tad while still not being completely under the tree canopy.

    Hope this helps!

  6. #46
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    Jul 2011
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    Crenshaw County, Alabama
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    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    I really appreciate the feedback, Dr. Russell. I have really been wrestling over the placement of the yard. What you've stated makes sense to me and will help me make a decision.

    After doing a lot of reading I've come to the conclusion in my feeble mind (for now )that it's not the heat factor with the SHB, but rather the humidity factor that appears to decrease the population of beetles in a hive that is in full sun. In other words, an arid environment isn't hospitable to the beetles and they try to avoid it. I believe that they can determine the general type of environment surrounding the hive location and that a moist humidity level might be a major requirement for them. Low humidity would mean dry ground and not so good for pupating beetles whereas higher/moderate humidity would be more attractive to them. As you stated, the actual heat doesn't really bother them. Full sun, I believe, is most often recommended simply because in most situations where you have full sun it also tends to be dry and to have lower localized humidity. It would be interesting to know how beetles react to hives placed in a moist, but full sun environment versus a dry and full sun environment...this could be stretched on to include a dry but partial shade environment. Sorry...I'm rambling.

    Thanks again,
    Ed

  7. #47

    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    Dr Russell? I know your father was an entomologist but I wasn’t aware that you had your PhD. Am I mistaken?

    Absolute, full sun here. In the same yards, my hives in full sun have substantially fewer beetles than those 100ft away with afternoon shade. The difference is dramatic.

    I’ve said it before. If you travel to south GA and into Fl and look into those melon fields you will see hives that have been placed for pollination. In the blazing sun! No screen bottoms….zip! Bees discovered evaporative cooling eons before mankind ever figured it out.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  8. #48
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    Jul 2011
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    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    Dan, thanks for the added input! Anybody else ever feel like a yo-yo?

    As for the reference to "Dr" Russell, that was probably just an error on my part...I make lot's of them! I had it in my mind that he had a doctorate. But, hey, compared to me his experience level puts him up there around "doctor" level...me, I'm down there around "Igor" level.

    Do you detect any difference in moisture levels around the differently placed hives....possibly more ground moisture around the partial shaded area?

    Dan, excluding shb populations, do you detect a difference in bee health or honey production between hives in the two different areas?

    I have thought of making some shade screens from some window shading mesh. They would be large enough to cover the top covers with maybe an inch overhang and have standoffs keeping them about an inch above the top cover. I've also considered building some for the west side of the hives. The shade screens would only shade the hives and not the surrounding ground thus keeping the hives possibly cooler but the surrounding ground still hot and dry.

    The hives in the melon patches without sbb seem to handle shb ok? Mites? Since I've been interested in getting bees I've taken it for granted that I would go with sbb on my hives. Being in the south ssb seem to be the best way to go...but, what about solid bottom boards in the south?

    Ed
    Last edited by honeyman46408; 08-24-2011 at 08:56 AM. Reason: UNQuote

  9. #49

    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    I’ve been converting to screened bottoms….but not because I like them. A local farmer’s market requires that I be Certified Naturally Grown. The CNG folks require SBB. I’d tried SBBs in the past and couldn’t detect a significant difference in varroa populations. With the arrival of shb I came to believe that SBBs made their lives easier. As the bees attempt to sequester beetles away from the brood nest, the beetles were able to easily escape through the screens and the bees couldn’t follow. In addition, when the shb larvae are mature and must leave the hive, they need only drop through the screen. With a solid bottom those same larvae must run a gauntlet of bees in order to get out. So, I don’t like screened bottoms but am converting to them…..go figure.

    My bees have managed the heat without problems using solid bottoms. I’ve never had comb melt in a healthy hive. The most important thing, in my opinion, is that there is a source of water nearby. I would never recommend using an entrance reducer for shb control in the sun…..or the shade for that matter. I’ve watched beetles land on a landing board and walk into the entrance of a hive…with guard bees nearby…and the beetles aren’t challenged. And surely, with a screened bottom it wouldn’t help keep them out either.

    I haven’t noticed any difference in honey production between full sun hives and those in partial shade (all of my full shade hives are now gone). By the time the real heat arrives, our nectar flow has ended. Brood production continues throughout the summer. Even in full sun.

    Anyway…I’m not looking for an argument with ‘Dr’ Russell but my experience with shb is very different from his.
    Last edited by beemandan; 08-24-2011 at 09:38 AM.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  10. #50
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Bunker Hill, IL
    Posts
    493

    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    Quote Originally Posted by JRH View Post
    The FatBeeMan has a video on youtube that has been seen 12,678 times. In it, he shows how to make a small hive beetle trap out of inexpensive materials.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h_KDPp8H6PU
    speaking of video... i prefer john pluta's video of a badly infested hive with SHB.... its clear what/how they damage the hive when you see the vid.

    http://www.youtube.com/user/johnplut.../1/OQDFl_giWwc

  11. #51
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    Feb 2009
    Location
    Murfreesboro, TN, USA
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    1,398

    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    Quote Originally Posted by Intheswamp View Post
    Rather than full sun all day you believe that shade in the afternoon is good then? I'm debating on placement of my new bee yard. There is a stand of pine trees on the west end of the property that gives me the option of having afternoon shade or not (move the bee yard closer or further away from the trees). I can vary the timing of the shade from right after noon until late in the afternoon. I'm weighing the pros and cons of having some late afternoon shade. If you have more thoughts on afternoon shade I would love to hear them, Dr. Russell.

    Thanks,
    Ed
    I have some in partial shade and some in full sun in a field on a rock that protrudes out of the ground. Currently my worst infestations are those that are in full sun. Having said that, if they are in the shade put something down as a barrier on the ground. I put down plastic several layers thick. Make sure too that you are not watering plants near the hive as that is a 100% sure way to get a 100% SHB kill off of your hive(s).
    De Colores,
    Ken

  12. #52
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    Jul 2011
    Location
    Crenshaw County, Alabama
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    1,897

    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    Quote Originally Posted by schmism View Post
    speaking of video... i prefer john pluta's video of a badly infested hive with SHB.... its clear what/how they damage the hive when you see the vid.

    http://www.youtube.com/user/johnplut.../1/OQDFl_giWwc
    Nasty.

  13. #53
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    Jul 2011
    Location
    Crenshaw County, Alabama
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    1,897

    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    Quote Originally Posted by beemandan View Post
    I’ve been converting to screened bottoms….but not because I like them. A local farmer’s market requires that I be Certified Naturally Grown. The CNG folks require SBB. I’d tried SBBs in the past and couldn’t detect a significant difference in varroa populations. With the arrival of shb I came to believe that SBBs made their lives easier. As the bees attempt to sequester beetles away from the brood nest, the beetles were able to easily escape through the screens and the bees couldn’t follow. In addition, when the shb larvae are mature and must leave the hive, they need only drop through the screen. With a solid bottom those same larvae must run a gauntlet of bees in order to get out. So, I don’t like screened bottoms but am converting to them…..go figure.
    Interesting that CNG requires screen bottoms...but it makes sense since all bee trees have screen bottoms. I haven't checked, but I'm thinking you are a commercial/large sideliner? Being a hobbiest I'm looking to use oil pans on my screened bottoms. For a person with lots of hives I can see where the oil trap pans would be a hassle. My mentor doesn't like them as he says they're too messy...apparently bad experience in times past with them. He currently only uses in-hive traps...but, he lost an outlaying hive a couple of weeks ago to the beetles.

    My bees have managed the heat without problems using solid bottoms. I’ve never had comb melt in a healthy hive. The most important thing, in my opinion, is that there is a source of water nearby. I would never recommend using an entrance reducer for shb control in the sun…..or the shade for that matter. I’ve watched beetles land on a landing board and walk into the entrance of a hive…with guard bees nearby…and the beetles aren’t challenged. And surely, with a screened bottom it wouldn’t help keep them out either.
    Interesting about your experience with the heat. In regards to an entrance reducer to combat shb....what about some small mesh screen? If the shade frame is only above shading the top cover you think that would aggravate the shb problem then?

    I haven’t noticed any difference in honey production between full sun hives and those in partial shade (all of my full shade hives are now gone). By the time the real heat arrives, our nectar flow has ended. Brood production continues throughout the summer. Even in full sun.

    Anyway…I’m not looking for an argument with ‘Dr’ Russell but my experience with shb is very different from his.
    No, I don't want arguments...just constructive debate. Somewhere in the center (or just off-center) of everyone's ideas, experiences, opinions are most of the right answers...and every now and then the correct answer is out there in left field where nobody imagined it would be. We just have to keep open minds and work through the maze individually. Thanks for the feedback...this ol' newbee (that's contradicting isn't it?) needs all the help he can get!!!
    Best wishes,
    Ed

  14. #54
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    Jul 2011
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    Crenshaw County, Alabama
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    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    Quote Originally Posted by USCBeeMan View Post
    I have some in partial shade and some in full sun in a field on a rock that protrudes out of the ground. Currently my worst infestations are those that are in full sun. Having said that, if they are in the shade put something down as a barrier on the ground. I put down plastic several layers thick. Make sure too that you are not watering plants near the hive as that is a 100% sure way to get a 100% SHB kill off of your hive(s).
    Sufficient ground moisture strikes me as being a factor that enhances shb "homesteading"...a more arid condition is less desireable for them, I believe. Interesting that your full sun hives have presently have the worst infestations...have you been using the same type/amount of shb management on both the shady and sunny hives?

    Ed

  15. #55
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    Feb 2011
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    etowah,Alabama
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    457

    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    I us it and it works great as an attractant. Just mix in a dab of Combat roach gel. I mix it when loading the CD traps.

  16. #56
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    etowah,Alabama
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    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    Have you ever put your feet in the scorching white sand on to the Gulf Coast beaches. My bet is a larva cant high step it like I do.

  17. #57
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    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    Quote Originally Posted by guyross View Post
    I us it and it works great as an attractant. Just mix in a dab of Combat roach gel. I mix it when loading the CD traps.
    I'm lost here, guyross...???

  18. #58
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    Jul 2011
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    Crenshaw County, Alabama
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    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    Quote Originally Posted by guyross View Post
    Have you ever put your feet in the scorching white sand on to the Gulf Coast beaches. My bet is a larva cant high step it like I do.
    From what I've read they'll crawl across hot black asphalt!!

  19. #59
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    Feb 2011
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    etowah,Alabama
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    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    Sorry Swamp here are some pictures of I'm using.https://picasaweb.google.com/1134009...eat=directlink

  20. #60
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
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    etowah,Alabama
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    457

    Default Re: Small Hive Beetle damage to hives;

    They must be from Hell. I talked to a Auburn grad that has a lawn spraying business. He said that timing was everything when it comes to pesticides like Japanese beetles. He wasn't aware of or daemon beetle.

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