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Thread: Staggering bee

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA
    Posts
    28

    Default Staggering bee

    We hived a package two days ago and today I saw a bee staggering around on the landing board.
    She eventually fell of the landing board and continued staggering around on the ground.
    She appeared less hairy than the other bees.
    Other bees were doing the same a distance from the hive.
    What can this be, is this Bee Paralysis Virus?
    Last edited by Kiran; 05-14-2014 at 03:52 PM. Reason: Add line 4

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Mtn. View, Arkansas, USA
    Posts
    1,246

    Default Re: Staggering bee

    It could be, or it could be any of several that affect honey bees. Tracheal mites causes crawlers, as does Nosema. The Hairless Black Syndrome form of Chronic Bee Paralysis Virus causes bees to look shiny or greasy. I see it when a colony is very stressed, but if the colony is fed, and a frame or 2 of sealed brood is given to strengthen it, then usually it does no damage.

    There is no treatment for any of the viruses, just try to keep the colony well nourished and control the varroa mites. Watch out for the colony going queenless and usually thing work out ok.
    37 years - 25 colonies - IPM disciple - naturally skeptic

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA
    Posts
    28

    Default Re: Staggering bee

    a frame or 2 of sealed brood is given
    Unfortunately this is our only hive.
    Our first inspection is scheduled for Friday, should we perform a sugar roll mite count?
    Also is giving the bees warmed syrup a good idea?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Mtn. View, Arkansas, USA
    Posts
    1,246

    Default Re: Staggering bee

    I would sugar dust the colony while they have no brood and the mites are all on the adult bees. Using powdered sugar on a package is effective, one of the few times the mites are exposed to the dusting and not protected in the capped brood. They are exposed until there is larvae that is within 20 hours of being capped.

    You should be feeding syrup unless there is a good nectar flow in your area.
    37 years - 25 colonies - IPM disciple - naturally skeptic

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