Re: How do you KNOW that mites caused the hive to crash?
I see plenty of looking beyond the mite as a problem with bees. It may be you that is fixated on the mite. I see far more winter prep conversations. splitting in the spring conversation. feeding. inspection and many other management issue targeted toward many bee health and colony strength issue. Mite management tends to be a part of most issues as well.
Originally Posted by Maddox65804
As for other monitoring. In addition to the evidences offered for mite determination in a dead colony. a microscope to monitoring nosema levels and tracheal mite levels. I have not seen anything on monitoring deformed wing virus or any of the other minor diseases of the colony. There area also some fairy well documented techniques for foul brood, chalk brood etc.
Mites get rehashed and will until a solution is found . and that is as it should be.
If it is true that colony can thrive with just an infestation of mites. this would be evidence that it is not the mite that is the problem for the bees. As others have said. the mite may very well be only the carrier of what is fatal to the colony. The presence of the mite is still the cause of the problem. I do agree that at least to some degree more exact and in depth discussion of exactly why the mite is a problem. and that discussion does not necessarily begin with "If the mite is a problem".
I have seen two symptoms among my bees that caused me to be concerned about mite levels.
1. I would from time to time see a few bees, although very few. with deformed wings.
2. far more frequently But still mot a lot, I would see bees unable to fly running across the ground. the impression was that they where being attacked by something and extremely frantic. They would fall over and roll around on the ground then start running again. always directly away from the hive. (Tracheal Mites?)
I have no link to say that either has any connection to mites. I did pull drone brood from it's cell and found a very high mite load. So this confirms that mites can be present in high numbers in an otherwise nearly completely healthy hive.
I do agree on this principal. You cannot keep doing the same thing expecting different results. I believe the results of current methods are well known and almost utterly poorly reported. They are exaggerated in one direction or the other. And even with that very little if any actual documenting or track of of actual results are found.
That results vary widely indicates the problem is far more complex than is currently being looked at. I believe the related factor may span as far as environmental conditions where bees in a drought will be effected more than those on a flow, etc. Humidity may play a part. average temperature. a colder or warmer than normal winter. a hotter or cooler than average summer.
Yet suggest doing one thing different and it is met with venomous rejection. "We are doing it as our forefathers did it". So what your forefathers would be bankrupt and keeping rabbits by now.
Significant Minority vs Insignificant Majority, 20% of causes produce 80% of the effects.