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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Exton PA
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    17

    Default Diatomaceous Earth Circle around Hive?

    My two backyard hives have SHB. I use traps but the problem persists, although minor. So I am thinking that perhaps I can augment the traps by using Diatomaceous Earth around the hive, but use slightly different approach than simply sprinkling it around. I am thinking of pulling up all the grass in two 4 foot circles and adding a 1/2 inch layer of the Diatomaceous Earth to each, and then covering each with 3 inches or so of mulch. Then put a hive in the center of each circle.

    Are the circles wide enough?
    Would this be effective or are there risks here I am not considering?

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Libertytown, MD, USA
    Posts
    70

    Default Re: Diatomaceous Earth Circle around Hive?

    This conjures up images of a shb with a miniature guitar singing Ring of Fire. Good luck.

    "...I went down, down, down and the flames went higher..."

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Libertytown, MD, USA
    Posts
    70

    Default Re: Diatomaceous Earth Circle around Hive?

    "...bound, by wild desire, I fell in to a ring of fire..."
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=It7107ELQvY

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Haslet, Tx
    Posts
    84

    Default Re: Diatomaceous Earth Circle around Hive?

    Lol Justus
    I had the thought that the SHB crawl back into the hive after pupating so they probably arn't going on walkabout. straight down is where I would focus my attention.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Exton PA
    Posts
    17

    Default Re: Diatomaceous Earth Circle around Hive?

    LOL. Well, I heard that the larvae can crawl quite some ways away from the hive.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    5,426

    Default Re: Diatomaceous Earth Circle around Hive?

    Diatomaceous Earth is also a killer to bees, any bees coming in contact would be at risk. Doubt it would kill the hive, just some of the bees.

    We don't have SHB in my country so can't comment on them, but if we ever do get them, personally I'll be looking at some way to make sure the larvae do not successfully pupate. Be it some kind of poison, trap, funnel, or whatever. In theory anyway, if every beekeeper worked on preventing larvae reaching maturity, they should cease to be a problem. From my reading, most current methods seem to be targeting the adult beetle, rather than breaking the breeding cycle.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Exton PA
    Posts
    17

    Default Re: Diatomaceous Earth Circle around Hive?

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    Diatomaceous Earth is also a killer to bees, any bees coming in contact would be at risk. Doubt it would kill the hive, just some of the bees.

    We don't have SHB in my country so can't comment on them, but if we ever do get them, personally I'll be looking at some way to make sure the larvae do not successfully pupate. Be it some kind of poison, trap, funnel, or whatever. In theory anyway, if every beekeeper worked on preventing larvae reaching maturity, they should cease to be a problem. From my reading, most current methods seem to be targeting the adult beetle, rather than breaking the breeding cycle.

    Thanks for the reply. Well, my intention of applying the diatomaceous earth in the method I am proposing is to do exactly what you mentioned--break the life cycle. Are the larvae really going to dig down through the diatomaceous earth? Well, no they should not survive that. As for the bees, I see no issue since I am proposing to cover it with mulch. (and keep it covered as the mulch breaks down). My proposed method is not practical for a commercial beekeeper, but for someone with a few hives like me, I think it would work.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    5,426

    Default Re: Diatomaceous Earth Circle around Hive?

    Well with a light mulch it might be perfect, first thing the grubs would do is tunnel into it & hit the diatomanous earth.

    Still not sure if it would kill them though. The mode of action is to get in between the joints in the insects exoskeleton plus the breathing tubes & act like sandpaper on the tissues causing tiny cuts that will leak fluid & kill the insect. The grubs will shortly shed their skin to pupate so it may not be effective. Guess the idea would be to get some SHB larvae and try it on them to find out.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

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