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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    grand rapids, michigan
    Posts
    436

    Default SHB increasing then....

    Over the last couple months I've seen SHB steadily increasing in my two hives. Lately I would see a dozen or so scurring about the top bars of the top box and under the inner cover. So I finally break down and buy 10 Better Beetle Blasters. I open the hives to install them and between the two hives I see a grand total of 1. Uno.

    Its been getting down into the low 50's and mid 40's at night here for the last couple weeks so.... maybe low temps are as effective if not more than traps.

  2. #2

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    You understand the SHB life cycle right, pupating in the soil? Certainly cool temps will interrupt that life cycle. That's why beetles are so prevalent down here, because it hardly gets cold enough to stop them.
    After 20 months I'm over a 20 hives and growing. See my videos! http://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8fVrmUsyYlRuASdX6UQk1g

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Cartersville, Gerogia, USA
    Posts
    59

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    It seems to me that the beetles move into the cluster of bees when it gets cool or cold to keep warm. When the weather warms up good you will see them under the lid again.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    grand rapids, michigan
    Posts
    436

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    We are still getting some 70 degree days so no clustering yet. In fact the bees were very busy today hauling in pollen and doing orientation flights late afternoon.

    But yes once the bees cluster I suspect the SHB will join them. So I hope the cool nights have driven them away.
    Last edited by frankthomas; 10-10-2013 at 06:36 PM. Reason: typo

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    grand rapids, michigan
    Posts
    436

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    Tom I have a rough understanding of their cycle but I don't know the timing or how low the temps need to get to disrupt the cycle nor what happens to them. Several weeks ago I covered the ground around and under the hives with table salt. Hopefully that helped as well.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    St. Louis, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    626

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    I opened up a nuc this afternoon to refill some syrup and my bees were attacking a SHB. One would wrestle it, trying to sting it, then she would lose hold of it (because I was trying to help by smashing it) and another bee would pounce and do the same. This has been my weakest nuc but they were downright serious about killing that beetle. I finally succeeded in crushing the beetle and not the bees. I was really happy to see that behavior because I put a portion of pollen patty in there this morning and I don't want it fouled.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Kingston Springs, TN
    Posts
    117

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    I use diatomaceous earth around my hives to interrupt their life cycle but I still have them in all my hives. Something that really surprised me though, I few weeks ago I got a call about a hive on a tree branch (and I thought they were crazy). So I went to get it thinking it would be a swarm. To my surprise it was an exposed hive on a low branch with emerging brood. Anyways, when I was cutting the combs off the branch, there were SHB scurrying around in the top cells.

    A picture of the hive if you want to see http://fromthehive.org/open-air-exposed-honey-bee-hive/
    My blog and website: FromtheHive.org

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Cordova, TN, USA
    Posts
    162

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    IMO it's fruitless to use anything on the ground around the hives. Yeah you might knock down a few larva but if the larva hit the ground they've slimed and pooped in your honey already (they've been in the combs long enough to mature). You've already lost the war if larva get that far.

    I think those ground treatments are pushed by people trying to sell us something useless and make money off of us unethically.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    27,210

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    I'm thinking in northern climes like ours that maybe many SHBs from different hives get together in just a few hives. I'm seeing more of them too, but not in a number of hives. Then, maybe they are hanging out in open empty cells. So you don't see them.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    havana fl
    Posts
    1,358

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    Rweaver is right. If larva are making it to the ground they have already trashed a bunch of honey and you should notice it during an inspection before they leave the hive. If ya don’t check your hive for weeks at a time then a drench mite help. The latest research is that the bees will coral a bunch of beetles in a corner or under top bars and frame rest’s or in empty comb away from honey stores so they can’t reproduce. The beetles once cornered will use their antenna to stimulate the bees into feeding them. Go figure. A strong hive will be able to keep them under control better than a week hive. You can save a hive if ya catch it soon enough. I have lost some and saved some.
    I’m really not that serious

  11. #11

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    Small hive beetles are a tropical pest. Most that somehow find their way to northern climates will not survive until the following spring. With a longer winter to survive and shorter reproductive season (warm soil) I wouldn't expect shb to become a long term problem in Michigan.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    27,210

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    Update Dan. SHB do survive the Winter up North. They don't have to be in beehives to do it either.

    At a bee meeting Wednesday evening a cpl w/ two hives in a place quite isolated from other managed beehives they were talking about seeing SHBs unlike anything last year.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  13. #13

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    Update Dan. SHB do survive the Winter up North.
    I'm sure some do survive...just not enough to become a serious problem...in my opinion. Remember, it's a double whammy. A few survive the longer winter...and then have a significantly shorter time to reproduce. Now...when we add it migratory beekeeping....let's say moving hives south to take advantage of shorter milder winters...and we both know at least one beekeeper who does that....all bets are off.....
    Again...just my opinion.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    McClure, OH
    Posts
    1,017

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    frankthomas:
    I am surprised you are still seeing them this time of year. I saw them in early spring and summer while I had patties on, but then the pretty much went away.

    Steve Johnson:
    This is one cool discovery! Thank you for the picture!

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    KC, MO, USA
    Posts
    1,188

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    >So I finally break down and buy 10 Better Beetle Blasters. I open the hives to install them and between the two hives I see a grand total of 1. Uno.

    They know!!!


    >I use diatomaceous earth around my hives to interrupt their life cycle

    I would not use DE where bees could come in contact with it, on the ground around your hives.
    "It remains effective as long as it is kept dry" Do you reaply after morning dew?


    In Missouri I don't see any until mid summer and their numbers slowly increase. So I don't think very many are wintering in hives at least not in my hives. After a few cold snaps I find allot dead SHB in the SBB. I will have to check to see if the dead beetles die all at once or if they die continually trough the winter.
    I think any time it warms up the bees will chase the beetles around the hive forcing them hide, if they don’t get back to the cluster before it get cold again their done.
    I bet most are spread each year by migratory bees.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Auburn, NY
    Posts
    487

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    Update Dan. SHB do survive the Winter up North. They don't have to be in beehives to do it either.

    At a bee meeting Wednesday evening a cpl w/ two hives in a place quite isolated from other managed beehives they were talking about seeing SHBs unlike anything last year.
    I am seeing more this year also. Many more. Last hive check a week ago showed me more than I have ever seen. I am thinking the warm weather this late is helping them. Supposed to be high 73 Sat and 70 today.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Athens, OH
    Posts
    2,698

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    In my deadouts this spring I noticed dead SHB on the debris tray under the SBB. They must have been living in or near the cluster and croaked when the colony died. I'm still seeing more than I care to.
    Politics is the entertainment branch of industry. -Frank Zappa

  18. #18

    Default Re: SHB increasing then....

    I, too, am seeing loads of shb this year....even more than usual, it seems. I’m doing my end of season inspections and typically see dozens on the inner covers or tops of frames. This time of year I only remove the innermost frames as the outside frames will often have hundreds….and I don’t want to disturb the balance in the hive. Basically the bees have driven them to the furthest reaches of the hive…and if I pull those outer frames I’ll release those hundreds of beetles. By late March there’ll only be a dozen or so remaining. I figure that hives overwintering up north should have much less by spring. And, I believe that the further north you go, the smaller the populations…..at least until some migratory beek brings a truckload or two to the neighborhood...not naming any names, you understand
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

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