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  1. #101
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    Problem though, the link doesn't work,
    Here is another: https://www.sussex.ac.uk/webteam/gat...ut.pdf&site=60

    From a write-up of a talk given by Prof. Ratnieks:

    "Research has shown that hygienic behaviour (i.e. the prompt removal by the workers of dead or diseased larvae) reduces the spread of diseases such as foulbrood and chalkbrood within a colony and furthermore disrupts the breeding cycle of Varroa mites. This hygienic behaviour is a genetic trait, is therefore inherited, and can be bred for using normal breeding methods. Surprisingly, only about 10% of British colonies are classed as 'hygienic'; moreover, within a hygienic colony perhaps only about 10% of the workers actually perform the hygiene tasks, though this is enough to make that colony hygienic. Professor Ratnieks used the analogy of a student household, often a fairly 'unhygienic' environment. However, even if only one or two of the housemates start to perform housework, this may well be enough to render the household (relatively) 'hygienic'!"


    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    and the quote you have given, does not back your former statement.
    I think it goes quite a long way. I'd also prefer to see a study of that particular issue. Perhaps we can find one (see a later post)

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    No insults, name calling, demands you find it, or other such babyish behaviour, [...] You could learn much from squarepeg about adult behaviour, and conversational etiquette.
    I think perhaps you should take a look in the mirror.

    Mike (UK)
    Anti-husbandry: Medication + Reproduction = Continuing Sickness
    http://www.suttonjoinery.co.uk/CCD/

  2. #102
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    On the topic of the number of patrilines needed to confer hygienic behahior; this again is topically tangental, but a good clue is supplied in the emboldened statement. I've included a large extract to give context and because its all interesting stuff:

    "One key honeybee defence mechanism that has received considerable attention is hygienic behaviour (reviewed by Spivak and Gilliam (1998)). This behaviour is carried out by workers as a defence against various brood diseases, such as the bacteria Paenibacillus larvae (Rothenbuhler, 1964), the chalkbrood fungus Ascosphaera apis (Milne, 1983) and the mite Varroa destructor (Spivak, 1996). Hygienic behaviour involves the detection by worker honeybees of dead or infected brood, followed by the uncapping of the wax cell and the removal of the larva or pupa (Arathi et al., 2000). [1] The proportion of highly hygienic colonies, defined as those that remove >95% of dead brood within 48 h, is normally only around 10–12% in natural populations (Oldroyd, 1996; Spivak and Gilliam, 1998; Waite et al., 2003a). However, this proportion can be increased through artificial colony-level selection (Spivak and Gilliam, 1998). This starts by screening a large number of colonies to detect the most hygienic colonies, from which queens and/or drones are reared. A hygienic line of colonies are then obtained after at least four generations by crossing drones and daughter queens from the most hygienic colonies using either artificial insemination or natural mating (Palacio et al., 2000; Spivak and Reuter, 2001).

    Although colony-level selection has proved successful, the response to selection could potentially be improved if the breeding programme also included intracolony selection. The rationale behind this is that much of the genetic heterogeneity in a honeybee colony comes about because mother queens mate with multiple males (Estoup et al., 1994; Tarpy et al., 2004). The queens use sperm from these males randomly (Franck et al., 1999, 2002), and so colonies consist of many distinct genetic lineages (patrilines) that are the offspring of different fathers. Hygienic behaviour is behaviourally dominant, meaning that a colony has a hygienic colony-level phenotype even if only a small proportion of workers are hygienic (Arathi et al., 2000). Thus, a colony with only one or a few hygienic patrilines would be hygienic. As a result, the majority of daughter queens reared from a hygienic colony may themselves be of non-hygienic genotypes, significantly reducing the effectiveness of a breeding programme in terms of the response that can be obtained in one generation of selection. A breeding programme that also incorporates intracolony selection by selectively using queens from hygienic patrilines could thus be advantageous, especially at the start of a breeding programme when unselected colonies contain considerable variation for the trait of interest."
    Multi-level selection for hygienic behaviour in honeybees
    J A Pérez-Sato1,2, N Châline1,3, S J Martin1, W O H Hughes1 and F L W Ratnieks1,4
    http://www.nature.com/hdy/journal/v1...dy200920a.html

    [1] In the document the references are links to the footnoted fuller references, which supply links to originating documents, which, as is often the case, lead to closed publishers. However I found this one by googling the title, and will post separately.

    Mike [UK]
    Anti-husbandry: Medication + Reproduction = Continuing Sickness
    http://www.suttonjoinery.co.uk/CCD/

  3. #103
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    Abstract
    "Hygienic behaviour performed by middle-aged worker bees is an important intranidal task in colonies of the honey bee Apis mellifera (L.). It comprises detecting diseased brood in the larval and pupal stages and removing all such infected brood, thereby decreasing the incidence of infection. Hygienic behaviour consists of two task-components: uncapping cells and removing the cell contents. The aim of this study was to observe bees performing hygienic behaviour to determine their age at performance of the behaviour and to describe their behavioural repertoire. The bees performing hygienic behaviour were middle-aged bees, younger than foragers. In the colonies where the behaviours of individual bees were observed, all bees performing the hygienic behaviour were seen to exhibit both the components, though at different frequencies. One behavioural class performed the task of uncapping cells at higher frequencies than the task of removing cell contents, while another class performed both tasks to the same extent. While these two classes had higher frequencies of the tasks comprising the hygienic behaviour but lower frequencies of other common behaviours in their repertoire, a third class of bees included those that performed all behaviours in their repertoire at similar frequencies. There was no difference in the ages of the bees in these three behavioural classes. These results suggest that there is no evidence of task partitioning among bees performing the hygienic behaviour. The segregation observed could, however, be based on their response thresholds to the stimulus and/or on their ability to discriminate the various cues emanating from the dead brood."

    Discussion
    Hygienic behaviour is an important intranidal task in a honey bee colony and is
    performed by middle!aged bees[ The above estimates of the ages of bees performing
    hygienic behaviour con_rm that these bees have brood!rearing experience but have
    not yet begun foraging[ It is evident from the time activity budgets of the bees
    performing hygienic behaviour that 31) of their time is spent in the two com!
    ponents of hygienic behaviour\ while in the remaining time the bees are engaged
    in common behaviours such as walking\ autogrooming and inspecting cell contents[
    The common behaviours described above are known to be the main components
    of the behavioural repertoire of middle!aged bees "Kolmes 0874^ Seeley 0884#[
    Hygienic behaviour is exhibited by a small percentage "07)# of the bees in the
    colony[ A similarly small percentage of bees that are task specialists has also been
    reported for bees performing undertaking\ the removal of dead adult bees from
    the colony[ Bees performing the hygienic behaviour did not perform undertaking
    but were seen to drop the dead brood they pulled out to the base of the colony
    which would then be cleaned out by other worker bees "Arathi\ pers[ obs[#[ Under!
    takers are members of the forager age class\ unlike the bees performing the hygienic
    behaviour\ and were also found to constitute a small subset of colony workers]
    about 01) at any time "Sakagami 0842^ Visscher 0872#[ It is interesting\ however\
    to note here that the small percentage of bees found performing the hygienic
    behaviour in this study is despite the fact that these colonies were selected for
    hygienic behaviour[ The bees in these colonies should be homozygous for the
    character and all of them are therefore equally likely to perform the behaviour[
    The small percentage of bees that performed the hygienic behaviour\ however\
    performed both components of it and did not show any evidence of clear task
    partitioning between uncapping cells and removing cell contents

    [...]

    Though the performance of hygienic behaviour is also brief in tenure\ it is very
    unlikely that learning is not an important component[ On the contrary\ given that
    the behaviour is performed for a brief time in a worker bee|s life and is associated
    with handling diseased brood\ it is likely that its performance becomes more
    e.cient through learning[ Learning could lead to better detection of the stimulus
    with continued exposure "Masterman et al[ 1999#[ Earlier experiments by Trump
    et al[ "0856# proposed that bees do not learn from their association with other
    hygienic bees\ but just being in the same hive as other hygienic bees may not have
    the same e}ect as actively performing the behaviour[ Uncapping cells with dead or
    diseased brood could result in bees performing these tasks more e.ciently

    Ethology of Hygienic Behaviour in the Honey Bee Apis mellifera L[
    "Hymenoptera] Apidae#] Behavioural Repertoire of Hygienic Bees
    H[ S[ Arathi\ I[ Burns + M[ Spivak
    http://www.beelab.umn.edu/prod/group...cle_436807.pdf
    Anti-husbandry: Medication + Reproduction = Continuing Sickness
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  4. #104
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Foster Collins View Post
    Is it fair to ever expect bees to "boil out of their boxes" with no treatments, and minimal feeding?
    That is precisely what Tim Ives's colonies do. 400 lbs average production per hive. No feeding. No treating. 8% annual losses.

    Obviously it can be done - but he himself said it took a lot of experience and a lot of time to weed out weak colonies before he began to have success. I am not treating myself, but I am a patient person and if it takes five years to see solid results, so be it.

    I don't engage in the treat-don't treat nasty "discussions" that happen on this forum, if someone else does it a different way, so what... but there is ample proof that you can get outstanding results from untreated colonies and if I am not doing so at the moment, it is only because I haven't learned how to yet.

  5. #105
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    Good post Forrest.

    And Mike, thanks for getting serious and doing the work, I wanted to see the context.

    Unfortunately, the context is hygiene. It is pretty much established now that general hygiene alone is not going to defeat mites. Varroa specific hygiene has a better, but still tenuous chance.

    So nothing you have presented backs you claim that "only a few mite resistant patrilines are needed to make a hive mite resistant". And as a breeder, simple and amateurish as my work may be, I have not found your claim to be the true.

    Sorry, and I can see how you got confused. But the naked truth is, your claim is unsubstantiated, and does not appear to be in any of the claimed "scientific literature".
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  6. #106
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    Quote Originally Posted by ForrestB View Post
    That is precisely what Tim Ives's colonies do. 400 lbs average production per hive.
    Does that mean that he has some hives which produce an average of 400 lbs over a number of seasons? Or does that mean over all of his production hives he averages 400 lbs of honey?

    Does Tim have some hives that produce over 400 lbs of honey? What is the Guiness World Record for honey production?
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  7. #107
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    The cryptic nature of some of Tim's posts here on Beesource, make it impossible to determine if his seasonal 400 lb plus average is a true average, or an average of his best hives, or a world record. He needs to talk here more.

    I did ask him, but the answer was not so clear cut as it included calculations on how much it would have taken to produce x lbs of wax, and other things, arriving at a theoretical figure, which would have been more than the honey actually harvested.

    A straight answer, ie x honey, in the tank, from y number of hives that are not just the star performers only, would have been helpful.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  8. #108
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    I love it when someone says "I had a hive that made 200 lbs average." WChat the heck does that mean?
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  9. #109
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    I have been both intrigued and confused by Tim's posts. I, too, wish he would write a blow-by-blow breakdown of his methods and results. But I think I understand his reluctance to post here. Few enjoy being called a liar.
    Politics is the entertainment branch of industry. -Frank Zappa

  10. #110
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    Does that mean that he has some hives which produce an average of 400 lbs over a number of seasons? Or does that mean over all of his production hives he averages 400 lbs of honey?

    Does Tim have some hives that produce over 400 lbs of honey? What is the Guiness World Record for honey production?
    We can only guess. The relevant facts are what is your investment in time and equipment and how much production do you have to show for it at the end of the season. When we figure our pounds per hive average it's on every hive that is queenright at the beginning of the main flow. Those who pick and choose which hives are honey producers and then claim an average on only those hives are only fooling themselves and attempting to fool others. From every hive that you have input costs (labor included) you should have income.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  11. #111
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    No need to guess, Tim had an extensive conversation on it, and the info was there, He runs several 3 deep hives that produce well (bet he don't get 400 this year weather has been a major issue)....

    But the key is those are very select hives. if I did the numbers right about about 1/3 of his do that well. Still lots of real discussion need to decide if a single that makes 100 is better than a triple that make 300.... He is a bit cryptic about his total averages... but not unusual.

  12. #112
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    Unfortunately, the context is hygiene. It is pretty much established now that general hygiene alone is not going to defeat mites. Varroa specific hygiene has a better, but still tenuous chance.
    Its one of the most promising avenues of research and has been amply demonstrated to make a significant difference. It isn't isn't on its own enough to make the difference between colony life and
    death, but nor is anything else - health and vitality emerge from a complex of adaptive traits and characteristics.

    I think if you were genuinely interested in moving toward a design for a new attempt, at treatment free beekeeping, you'd be very interested in these things.


    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    So nothing you have presented backs you claim that "only a few mite resistant patrilines are needed to make a hive mite resistant".
    I'm going to agree with you that I could have written that more carefully. However, what Prof. Ratneiks says and this reference, taken together, amount to is at least highly suggestive of something close to that position. It isn't absolute, which is what you seem to want. It amounts to something like: 'the more patrilines carry the several hygeinic traits, especially vsh, the more likely it is that a colony won't fall to mite infection alone.'

    Other things help - resistance to viruses like dwv for example, general vitality, attunement to local climate and forage.

    That's a reasonable rounded picture, and a fair interpretation of the literature, and enough off-topic nit-picking.

    Mike (UK)
    Anti-husbandry: Medication + Reproduction = Continuing Sickness
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  13. #113
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    I guess that's as near as you would ever get to saying your statement was incorrect.

    Nitpicking. LOL
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  14. #114
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    Quote Originally Posted by gmcharlie View Post
    Still lots of real discussion need to decide if a single that makes 100 is better than a triple that make 300.... He is a bit cryptic about his total averages... but not unusual.
    I think there is no question 3 is better than 1, IF what Tim says is true - and that is that large colonies are naturally more resistant to a whole range of ills. And it would seem logical - if a strong and healthy mature colony can occupy three hive boxes, why would anyone assume that restricting them to a single would not be prejudicial? And all of Tim's comments square precisely with the writings of Oscar Perone. I for one am going to give it a try - though people in my area (northern Spain) think this is crazy. But not one of them has actually tried it for themselves. Lol.

    As to the numbers, I didn't see anything that Tim said that would suggest that his definition of average is any different than mine. Though what I did undertand him to mean is that that is the average for his mature three deep hives - of which each year he splits HALF into singles. Those are essentially his nucs and he does not include those when calculating his production numbers.

  15. #115
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    My immediate reply to 1 that produces 300 or 3 that produce 100 each is that the 1 is better. It is one third the additional equipment needed. only one BB, Inner cover, feeder outer cover. etc etc etc. and only one hive to open and inspect. of course inspection is more difficult to impossible or insane to choose to do whichever you chose to call it.

    With additional thought the advantages of 3 hives begin to come forward. More options to navigate less than stellar performance and that sort of thing.

    In actual practice I would have to say I am the 3 with 100 each sort. since that is how I actually manage my bees. at least so far anyway.
    Stand for what you believe, even if you stand alone.

  16. #116
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    Default Re: Treatment Free "Thriving" vs. Treated "Thriving" - Is it Fair to Compare?

    I don't treat for Varroa mites, because, before I read how Varroa afflicted colonies that weren't treated, would survive two or three years, at best. Well, before I first read that statement, my hives were already more than ten years old, and I hadn't lost a single one. Now, my colonies are more than twenty years old, and the only ones I lose are the ones I sell, or the few that are still in 3-frame mating nucs, before I combine them into full-size nucs for the Winter (they are often overcome by robbing, if we've had a dry Summer). Strong 5-frame nucs, or larger colonies seem to be able to hold their own, but they sometimes have intercolony feuds over resources, which usually reduces most hives populations of older bees, but rarely results in episodes of, "robbed out" colonies.

    Almost every season, here, is unique, in some way. Many times the Summer rains are not sufficient to overcome the drying effect of the Summer heat, so there is dearth. Winter rains, are, likewise, scarce. But, when there is sufficient rain, combined with, slightly cooler temperatures (90F or below), there can be nice wildflower honey flows.

    In the meantime, after the bees have depleted their stores. Which can happen by September or October, I then begin feeding, a little, enough to keep them alive, until the next time the weather is right to provide more forage.

    Here, Varroa seems like no problem at all. Now, chronic lack of forage, that's a problem.

    I'm not saying that Varroa isn't a deadly parasitic pest, for many beekeepers. Just that "location" seems to be of much more importance than just about any other factor.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
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