Is a lack of dead bees in a hive a classic sign of mites or related disease?
Is a lack of dead bees in a hive a classic sign of mites or related disease?
Back in the 90's when varroa first hit I had a whole load of 500+ hives that went untreated and I lost every single one. They were almost exactly the way you described your losses, lots of honey and hardly a bee. It was pretty easy to pull the honey crop though This really has nothing to do with big chemical companies though just learning how to diagnose varroa problems and to help some get answers on what may have happened to their bees.
John: it's not the only reason it can happen but it's probably the most common. Just take a close look at the bottom board if there are lots of dead mites then I would be certain of it
Well, I appreciate the insights by all. I'm open to the possibilities. The title of this thread is "2012 Dieback Already" does this mean that I shouldn't post here and I should shut up and go to the treatment free forum? Thats the message I got a few posts back.
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I would listen to Mr. Lyon if I were you and not go off in a snit. Lots of old grouches here but if you put up with them, there is a lot to learn. If you choose to be treatment free, you will be a fine customer buying bees from someone who has a stategy of some kind to control the mites. There are treatment free folks but only if you limit treatment definition to chemical treatment. Some genetics work better than others. There is a lot to learn period. Don't go away mad.
i think its obvious that both problems exist, whats not obvious is why the health of our bees seems to go in these cycles.
i think, and i hope im right that we will not see these same problems next year.
you see these dead hives with only a few bee's, a queen, lots of honey, no dead bee's, also not many mites.
the reason there are not many mites is the same reason there are not many bee's.
the bee's fly away with their sickness to try and save the colony
And on top of that they have to deal with pesticides
Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted. - Emerson
Ready do we have the same problem or a new one.
Why is the queens that are produced today just throw away queens???
"People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney
so if i treat for mites once a month all year long, and then feed the bees nutra bee in the fall your saying i will have live hives come november. i really am curious how often some of you are treating. i treated once in the spring and 3 times in the fall. not enough?? too much?? where am i different from those of you that still have good bees this year.....is natural pollen building their gut microbes up??
I think its not that the queens are bad, I think its that the queens are getting sick. Getting sick either while being raised or getting sick in the beekeepers hive.
I think Nosema is at the heart of our queen problems
I dont like it, just as you dont like it, but its the reality of our situation. We need our association to keep looking and spending the time creating the links and proof. Nobody else is going to do it for us but ourselves. Sound familiar?
We must not come across the wrong way and making farmers out to be our enemies. I hear alot of that. Its the farmers we make our living off of. Farmers do not have a choice either, just as we do not have a choice whether to treat our diseases or not. Its just the way our economy has built itself. And Im not going to debate that here at all....
If giving the bees a diet supplement to help replace whatever modern day agriculture "MAY" be taking away from the bees food is probably one of the simplest short term solutions we have at our disposal right now. And if anything it will buy us time to be able to figure what is going on.
Because perhaps there isnt even a problem there at all.... It may be something completely different... Like Virus...
Just my opinion
I got the results yesterday from the lab tests for bees, wax, & pollen & I have to say I know less today than I did when the samples were sent in.
Nothing out of the ordinary was found and the remarks were made as to how clean all the samples are for no chemicals & what not.
Almost at this point in time wish there had been a smoking gun so to speak & something to place the blame on.
As I said in the past posts this is not effecting the entire outfit by any means. A few miles down the road the bees are looking fine & no loss.
Then there are 2 yards of comb honey bees that made a record crop this year are going into winter in great shape with no losses.
Frustrating is one word for this but as I tell my son " If this deal was easy everyone would have bees & honey would maybe worth a buck at best " then I also would be kidding only myself if I thought this deal would get any easier after 35 years.
My last job of 20 plus years we always preached the 3-C's.
Cause, Correction, & Cure.
Here I have no Cause, no way of implementing a Correction, that could result in a possible Cure!
Last edited by soupcan; 11-14-2012 at 10:30 AM.
NUTRA-BEE feed supplements
I buy great queens for the best honey production, but they are only good for one season. Wasn't always like that. When I was a kid, I never hear of having to requeen all the time. Now requeen is just part of the job. I've taken it to the next step. I rehive the bees every year. Fresh bees and fresh queens for best production.
Okay, my turn to get yelled at. Please do not bully another member until you bully me.
I see some of my bees doing good and others doing poorly, or I don't see them anymore.
Have been hearing of other beeks with terrible looking bees in the commercial sector, not so much with sideliners or hobbiests.
My thoughts are as follows:
1. Mites: Hives that skipped a cranberry pollination and were split in late June before heading up to NY look good. All my hives were treated with Apigaurd in early July. Mite levels are back up in most of the hives, but higher in the hives that weren't split.
2. Weather: Early spring= more mites. dry late spring and fall led to poor looking bees by late June through July (Bees turned around when they hit the ground in NY.) Little nectar all summer until knotweed in late August. cool weather in late september and october ended fresh pollen sources which made them eat stored pollen.
3. Fungicides, someone back there mentioned them. Fungicides, I believe, make pollen almost worthless. My theory is the bees got some sprayed pollen in blueberries, but stored it because they had good oak pollen at the same time that they preferred. Bees in cranberries are expected to get loaded with fungicides. When the pollen stopped coming in in the fall, the bees had to use stored pollen wich contained fungicides, which further stressed the bees. Include with that the extremly high mite load at this time of the year mentioned by others. Add the affect of viral loads which the bees can't fight because they have a cold and have been living off a box of ramen noodles, so to speak. I know why my bees went backwards, looked like a good 3 boxes of bees first week of October, and by the third week they were averaging 6 frames of bees. Those bees that didn't go to cranberries got less fungicide, and their stored pollen was split in half.
Ok, you guys get it, thats what you've been saying. but I have almost empty and empty hives that aren't littered with mites on the bottom board. Next year will be better, eh?
This is when Keith says you need Nutra-Bee. (No east coast supplier. Yet. )