See this link:
See this link:
Last edited by Rader Sidetrack; 11-11-2012 at 07:58 AM.
USDA Zone 7a - elevation 1400 ft
Just a small exerpt:
Safe Use of Pesticides
A. For each of the following materials approved for use in or around bee hives, be
able to describe the procedures for safe handling, use, storage and disposal.
• ApiLife VAR
• Apistan (fluvalinate)
• Bee Go (butyric anhydride)
• Checkmite (coumaphos)
• Fischer’s Bee Quick
• Formic Acid (Mite-Away II)
• Fumagillin (Fumigilin-B®; old name Fumidil-B)
• Guardstar (permethrin)
• Mite-A-Thol (menthol pellets)
• Terramycin (tetracycline)
• Tylan (tylosin)
• Paramoth (para-dichlorobenzene)
Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping
And the status quo (Master Beekeeping Program as an example) does not teach TFB. That's all I am trying to say.
So, although a single data point, here is a state level organization that does not teach, train, or even mention TF as a possible (viable?) way to keep hives. I know I can ignore them, but guess who has the money and lobby power to affect laws and government.
So your question has merit. I'll even add to it: When will it become mandatory to be a certified beekeeper in order to own hives in VA? And will it become unlawful to keep them contrary to established scientific practices as set forth in the Master Beekeeping Program?
Think it can't happen? Ever thought it would be unlawful to buy a large soft drink at a restaurant in NYC?
Sorry, I'll ease away from the edge and get off my big government rant.
Last edited by bbrowncods; 11-11-2012 at 11:33 AM.
It requires you to be able to describe procedures for safe handling, use, storage and disposal. But I think it is a stretch for someone to be able to do so without some experience in actual practice. Especially a newbee with only a couple of years experience.
To your breadth and depth statement. What is the most disconcerting however, is not that they want you to know about treatments, it is that there is no thought or discussion of TF at all. So if TF is not even considered in the curriculum to becoming a "Master Beekeeper", then there is really only one alternative isn't there? (at least in the belief of the most powerful beekeeper organization in VA) And what does that say about those who are TFB? Not much.
And my point in the previous post is that they are the ones running the show.
Last edited by bbrowncods; 11-11-2012 at 11:28 AM.
I don't know why the word "Certified" is even included in the title of the VA Master Beekeeper Program. A person wanting to keep bees in VA does not need a certificate or need to be a Master Beekeeper to keep bees in VA.
I don't know how long ago the VA Beekeepers Association was established, but beekeeping has been practiced in VA longer than any other State in the Union. Just thought you'd like to know.
Alternately, you could put on your own bee workshops to show others how you keep bees without treatments, and how others can do it.
It's easy for new beekeepers to rail against the establishment - But it takes some heavy lifting to present a viable alternative.
From what I can see the Master Beekeeping certification programs are primarily interested in promoting knowledge in the Beekeeper community. Can a candidate recognize foul brood, respond accurately and favorably to the beekeeping industry for questions about swarms, etc, demonstrate an ability to deal with a wide range of honey bee issues like "What should I do about the bees that live in a hole outside my back door?" and it is late August and a beekeeper says "I think I have foul brood: There is a stench coming from my bee yard." And knowing how the various medications are used is an important part of the knowledge expected of a Master Beekeeper. There is much more to most Master Beekeeper programs - Ann Harmon has had a series of articles published in Bee Culture the last few months on the various master beekeeping programs.
I am likely to take the master beekeeper exams at the EAS meeting in 2013.
[Set opinion on]
Why isn't treatment free beekeeping promoted better in master beekeeping programs? TF is far from mainstream. Leading proponents of TF are often portrayed as unscientific or anti-science zealots. Many of the leading TF people, including some posting on this forum, are "lone wolfs" and are content to keep their focus on their own operations and not the larger beekeeping community.
The master beekeeper programs have developed out of the history of keeping bees primarily in Langstroth hives. Things are changing slowly and MB candidates should be able to identify a Warre or TBH and describe how they are used, and what the goals are for using those types of hives. I haven't seen any indication that TF beekeepers are thought less of than beekeepers who choose to treat, but there is an expectation (prejudice) that TF Beekeepers are not showing all their cards or rather describing their results with less than full transparency.
There are great parallels between the organic farming movement and TF beekeeping. Namely that it takes a long time and a lot of work to take an idea that the general population dismisses as whacked and demonstrate that there is some validity to it. Building on concepts that the general population already understands like the need for decent habitat is perhaps a good place to start.
TF Beekeeping will not be represented as many on this forum would like to see it represented in Master Beekeeping Programs until positive results are consistently, regularly and verifiably documented.
The fact that this forum exists tells me that the journey has started. It will be a long road though.
[Set opinion off]
Perhaps Treatment Free Beekeeping isn't part of most Master Beekeeper Courses because it is not a set method and how diseases and pests are addressed is not uniformely agreed upon w/in the Treatment Free Community or it is simply a matter of "leave it alone, it'll take care of itself." Which is not satisfying to those who have been keeping bees for a long time.
omition is not evidence. that they require you to have the knowledge to use them it is assumed they expect you will use them.
That they do not mention Treatment Free is not evidence they are not aware of treatment free. they simply do not require that you know it to be certified. I am sure their is a long list of things they consider to trivial to require.
All work and no play makes a happy bee.
Thanks Andrew, never saw them before. Would you mind telling where the quote comes from? If not, okay.
"Why is TF beekeeping not supported better in master beekeeping programs"?
Here is how it shapes up for me. Treatment free is the beekeeping version of Veggan, Tree huggers, Naturalist, whatever you want to call it. It varies in it's details considerably even within the group itself. I am talking about the thinking overall of the group not just bees. Followers can range from mild such as those that try to garden with no pesticides to extremely radical such as those that will make villages from mud huts and live with home made wood burning stoves. See this link for an example. Also called sustainable living. http://www.aprovecho.net/
Such movements an lifestyles are considered radical. Much of what they teach and believe seems to have a heavy element of wishing about it. They tend to minimize the negatives and accentuate the positives or even worse simply make up results out of pure hope. In large this inaccurate portrayal of their results is due to also being subjected to greater than ordinary criticism. They often feel they are expected to produce methods that perform to higher standards than the main stream for example. That main stream methods have accepted shortcomings in their systems. and yet minor flaws in their own are cause for rejection. etc.
Master bee programs woudl most likely not be associated with such efforts as it makes them subject to the same "Those people are crazy" attitude that the main stream tends to have. IN addition the programs would not promote the methods due to the tendency that the methods of such groups are not reliable. When asked to test the methods or offered the opportunity for others to test them. the response is usually and overwhelmingly a rejection.
Accurate or not. true or not. Treatment Free beekeeping does fit the model fairly well. It is radically different, places claims with little or no evidence, and resists being looked at to closely. people are simply told to try it and see for themselves.
I even see in this group that the TF advocates are now making efforts to establish a complete acceptance of the principals or be excluded. The person that woudl be interested in not treating by a schedule but managing by treating only when needed is not really welcome in their group. IT is no treatment at all ever or you are not a part. It is way I see that even the beekeepers practice this radical irresponsible promotion and recruitment of there ideas. IT is more about control of others, than better beekeeping.
So the final reason I see programs to not support TF beekeeping is that it is not better beekeeping. it may very well not be recognized as methods of beekeeping at all.
All work and no play makes a happy bee.
The closest thing to TF that is discussed at beginner classes in my neck of the woods is sugar dusting. They snicker when they mention that too. It's the local master keepers that are teaching the classes. They won't even say there are some people having success. In our local google group someone asked why most of the speakers at EAS were TF or heading that way and being successful. The VP of the MSBA said he's heard it's possible but that none of these folks "write anything down" and are "not scientists" so there is no reason to believe they are actually doing anything sucessfully. He also said it's easier and cheaper in the long run to treat. I'm going to plug along doing my best where I am with what I have. Having nearly zero local support is disheartening.
I'm baffled by what I am reading here. The worst thinformation that could happen to "treatment free beekeeping" would be to have it taught in a master beekeeper program by someone that does not understand and/or practice it. Would you take a beekeeping class from a non beekeeper?
with regards to transparency, I'm not sure what you are expecting. There are at least two conferences every year, Michael has answered a billion or so questions from others, built a website that everyone visits, wrote a rather comprehensive book, and has been speaking to more bee clubs than anyone else on the circuit.
We run (and finance) a conference every year, wrote a book, speak regularly at bee clubs, support our local club, and teach both beginning and advanced beekeeping....we have a teaching apiary in downtown Boston where we do weekly hive openings with anyone who is interested....
How transparent do you expect us to be?
As far as the commercial viability of treatment free beekeeping, we have three suppliers who are treatment free....they all make their livings with the bees, and they are paid a healthy premium for their product.
[QUOTE=Kristen2678;866793]The closest thing to TF that is discussed at beginner classes in my neck of the woods is sugar dusting.[quote]
you are not far from us....we are teaching both a beginners and advanced beekeeping course in Boston (at the intercontinental Hotel) on Monday nights in January. We offer a 6 day treatment free beekeeping conference in July (in Leominster, ma)...and we have some treatment free bees in Portland. Beeuntoothers.com
The funny and sad part of it was, Michael Bush was a speaker at the state meeting this year and a couple weeks prior had given a talk and open hive session just outside of Portland. He signed my copy of his book. I wish I'd asked him why he's never "written anything down"...... Like I said, painful for a beginner. They just don't want to see what's there.
DeKnow, I'm already on the list for a couple of your queens net year. My new nucs are coming from Kirk Webster. I'm thankful for you folks that have put the time and effort in. I'd be lost and on the treatment wagon otherwise.