Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers - Page 3
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  1. #41
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    "If they know their diseases, and make sure to manage foulbrood if it ever shows up, I don't really care."
    Sheer profundity.
    David Matlock

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  3. #42
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    then a new guy gets a deal at a barn find. puts bees in some and left over old stuff gets hung up in trees near my yards trying to get my swarms. my bees clean the box out and I get afb in my yard. probably I would not be thrilled with the new guy.

  4. #43
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    I do not know much about the specifics of varroa...whether it be applied to treatment free or not but do have a few questions...or wonderings if you may.

    I keep hereing that there are very few, or no, feral bees. Yet this is off set by folks setting out bait traps to catch the non existant bees.

    I must say that a swarm I lost from a hive last year set up in a hollow tree. It thrived over the summer but failed come winter. The " mother hive" in the apiary has lived.

    If the mite treatments and management plans are actually working surely the population mite load should be diminishing. It doesn't seem that it is. Are we simply propagating bees that can't deal with mites on their own? Is all money and effort spent on battling mites on behalf of bees a wasted effort?
    If no one treated would bees die out or would the survivors carry on in balance with the mites.
    Are himans to blame for this parasite:host imbalance with their artificial husbandry manipulations and efforts to artificially push production?
    As much as I enjoy working with and observing bees I can't help but think in the long run we may not be doing them any favours.
    Janne....first hives April 2013, 19 hives, treat, plant zone 8b, at sea level, latitude 49.13, longitude 123.06

  5. #44
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    At WAS this past fall, in a comment session (not a formal talk) Zach Huang stated specifically that if we had not been using miticides all these years, that we would have gotten over the varroa issues by now.

    Jerry Bromenshenk was visibly unhappy and cut him off.
    Sometimes the lights all shining on me
    Other times I can barely see. -The Grateful Dead

  6. #45
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    I really think we should squash a few things.

    Up front I have to say that I am attempting to have a TF apiary. Now this doesn't mean I let mites or disease run rampant. If I ever suspected I had AFB I would do something about it, whether that be burning or treating, it would be dealt with. I don't let hives die from mite loads either. Any hive with a heavy mite load goes to my other yard and gets an OA regiment. The hives in the treated yard are still good hives that I can requeen or use as cell builders, production, or whatever. This is more a matter of people who actually inspect their hives and that falls under 'general beekeeping' practices that should be exercised by both TF and T people.

    My opinion is that if one doesn't care about one's livestock, why keep livestock. It's a dis-service to the livestock and other concerned parties. The only real difference between myself and someone who treats is the practices I employ (splits, queen pinching, brood breaks, etc) to control mites rather than treating for them, even though I will treat so I won't lose viable colony that can be utilized next season.

    Both my yards have gone 2 years TF. I will treat for EFB, AFB, or pretty much anything that would cause major losses to my own stock, another beekeeper's stock, or the feral population of bees if such a disease were to present itself in my apiary. This will be my 5th year as a beekeeper so I'm not an expert but I do have a good grip on the basics and have been successful so far
    Zone 5 @ 4700 ft. High Desert

  7. #46
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    I can see how that statement might play out Deknow, but it would be a tough pill to handle for the commercial industry. What would the estimates on loss be if you were to let varroa play out like that?

  8. #47
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    With a good 5 year plan and using stock that is already available, it would be possible to convert entirely to mite tolerant lines of bees with no actual loss of production. It would require the commercial queen breeders to switch to mite tolerant stock. I would qualify this by adding that there are some changes in management required when running treatment free. Commercial beekeepers would have to modify a few things about the way they do business.
    NW Alabama, 50 years, 20 colonies and growing, sideliner, treatment free since 2005, 14 frame square Dadant broodnest

  9. #48
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    I'm not proposing it....but no matter what the problems are, identifying what extreme measures might achieve is a good exercise to help understand the problems....and if we can realize that treating for mites is keeping the bees from adapting, then maybe we can come up with a more sane middle ground plan than 'treating a little' or 'treating with natural things'.

    If we can't acknowledge that treating is the problem, then it is hard to even have a conversation.

    When I heard about Obama's 1 billion dollar initiatave to fight antibiotic resistant bacteria, that voice in my head screamed at me...
    "Now those bacteria are going to be funding resistant on top of being antibiotic resistant." ...if no one else has made this prediction....you heard it here first.

    I keep thinking about Teela Brown.
    Sometimes the lights all shining on me
    Other times I can barely see. -The Grateful Dead

  10. #49
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    I'm all for mite tolerance, but I've tried a few 'mite tolerant' stocks, haven't found one that actually tolerates mites here yet.

  11. #50
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    Quote Originally Posted by dadaas View Post
    I would like to know how do you handle conventional beekeepers when they come to you and say that your beehives are spreading varoa and that they will report you for not treating the bees?

    Not sure what are laws at your place. But in my country we need to treat by a law. And most of the beekeepers use Amitraz.

    I give idea to few beekeepers that i m thinking to go with top bar beehive and treatment free beekeeping, but they said i will lose all beehives and that i will spread varoa in the area.

    Can someone with more experience answer my concerns?


    dadaas

    What are the terms if you get caught not treating beehives or following bee keeping laws where you live ?
    I do realize you can do anything you want long as you're willing to pay the price. You sure would like to know what the prices before you decide not to treat your bee hives.





    BEE HAPPPY Jim 134
    Last edited by Jim 134; 03-04-2015 at 06:31 AM.
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  12. #51
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    >>My main concern with some treatment-free advocates is the mentality of "since I won't be treating diseases and pests, I don't need to know to identify them".
    >Can you name one such 'TF advocate'?

    Yes. Can you? I can't, and I know a lot of them.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 42y 40h 39yTF

  13. #52
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    Quote Originally Posted by Fusion_power View Post
    With a good 5 year plan and using stock that is already available, it would be possible to convert entirely to mite tolerant lines of bees with no actual loss of production. It would require the commercial queen breeders to switch to mite tolerant stock. I would qualify this by adding that there are some changes in management required when running treatment free. Commercial beekeepers would have to modify a few things about the way they do business.
    I know quite a few queen Breeders and mite resistance has been a top priority. The resulting genetic MUTTS produced are nearly brood less wimpy dinks.
    Less brood = Less mites not good for pollination or honey production.

    Commercial scale pollination beekeeping could not cope with TF management required
    John Pluta http://GeorgiaBees.blogspot.com Common Sense KISS Beekeeping Treated Boxes Bees Full Frames Foundation

  14. #53
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    Quote Originally Posted by deknow View Post
    Can you name one such 'TF advocate'?
    I would not. I'm not saying that everyone who is treatment-free is this way. I do hold treatment-free to be a goal to reach for.

    Quote Originally Posted by Riverderwent View Post
    "If they know their diseases, and make sure to manage foulbrood if it ever shows up, I don't really care."
    Sheer profundity.
    I think we have enough people telling others how to live their lives, thank you. Varroa in endemic, now. Everyone has it. And it's treatable, there are multiple different products with high efficiency against it, both synthetic and "organic". If it was a pest we were trying to contain and against which there was no pesticide, then I'd care more. But a small back-yard apiary, with 1-4 hives, even overrun with varroa will not be significantly affecting nearby 20+ hive commercial apiaries. That's just absurd. Unless it has foulbrood.

    Quote Originally Posted by WBVC View Post
    I do not know much about the specifics of varroa...whether it be applied to treatment free or not but do have a few questions...or wonderings if you may.

    I keep hearing that there are very few, or no, feral bees. Yet this is off set by folks setting out bait traps to catch the non existant bees.

    I must say that a swarm I lost from a hive last year set up in a hollow tree. It thrived over the summer but failed come winter. The " mother hive" in the apiary has lived.
    Are there a lot of feral bees, or not? There's not much reliable data to answer that question.

    I think the answer partly lies in what one defines as being a "feral colony". Is a colony living in a hollow tree "feral", if two weeks ago, before it swarmed, it was living in a commercial apiary? Technically, it's feral, but it doesn't deserve any of the praise from those who advocate "feral stock". A couple of weeks back it might have been on antibiotics and synthetic miticides, for all one knows.

    There are certainly a lot of escaped swarms to be found in the wild. But how many survive past a year? Who knows. The claim that varroa killed them all off seems dubious to me, as feral bees tend to be swarmy, and swarming is a powerful tool to survive varroa.
    www.apisrustica.com Bee Breeding: Canadian nuclei & queens
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  15. #54
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    Quote Originally Posted by deknow View Post
    At WAS this past fall, in a comment session (not a formal talk) Zach Huang stated specifically that if we had not been using miticides all these years, that we would have gotten over the varroa issues by now.

    Jerry Bromenshenk was visibly unhappy and cut him off.
    We all have our own unique peptides. Open breeding and open feeding make beelosophy interesting.
    David Matlock

  16. #55
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    I keep thinking about Teela Brown.
    Not many readers here also have read Ringworld and the selection of the luckiest of the lucky.

    The Achilles heel of bee breeding is that the queens mate in the air with whatever drones are available. This leads to a conundrum that putting mite tolerant queens into your colonies will not be effective so long as the apiary is surrounded by treated bees. Any time the queen is replaced, the virgin queen is likely to mate with a large percentage of drones carrying susceptible traits. The result is a colony of susceptible bees.

    The only way treatment free stock will become the standard is if beekeepers insist on treatment free stock. The only way beekeepers will insist on treatment free stock is if traits for honey production and pollination are at least equal to existing susceptible bees. Which gets back to the complaints listed above that treatment free bees tend to be less productive. This suggests a breeding program for both production and mite tolerance should be implemented. There are a few breeders doing this already.
    NW Alabama, 50 years, 20 colonies and growing, sideliner, treatment free since 2005, 14 frame square Dadant broodnest

  17. #56
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    I am not treatment free. I do not have enough hives to risk losing a lot of them nor do I have the skills to manage my hives well enough...yet.

    I aiming towards choosing my reproduction hives and Queens from hives that have lower mite loads, are not nasty and produce adequate honey. I think the hives that are least able to cope are self limiting and die off over winter despite my efforts.

    This is not ideal but I don't think one can get to successful treatment over night. I also think it is difficult to do with many small back yard hives in the vicinity.
    Janne....first hives April 2013, 19 hives, treat, plant zone 8b, at sea level, latitude 49.13, longitude 123.06

  18. #57
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    I have a lot of respect for Randy Oliver, he starts his article off with a rant, this is part of what he says in the March 2014 issue of ABJ.:
    Do not disillusion yourself. Allowing domesticated package colonies to die year after year is not in any way, shape, or form a contribution to the breeding of mite-resistant stocks. There is a vast difference between breeding for survivor stock and simply allowing commercial bees to die from neglect! By introducing commercial bees year after year into an area, and then allowing those package colonies to first produce drones and then to later die from varroa, these well-meaning but misguided beekeepers screw up any evolutionary progress that the local feral populations might be making towards developing natural resistance to varroa. Not only that, but those collapsing "mite bombs"' create problems for your neighbors. Referring to yourself as a bee-keeper confers upon you a responsibility to the local beekeeping community. Allowing hives to collapse from AFB or varroa makes you a disease-spreading nuisance!
    But every sunday afternoon he is a dirt track demon
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  19. #58
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    Quote Originally Posted by Dominic View Post
    I would not. I'm not saying that everyone who is treatment-free is this way.
    I'm asking that you please do. You have said quite plainly that such "TF advocates" exist and that you have a problem with them.

    I don't know of any, and I don't believe you do either. Obviously there are kooks out there, but I'm asking for even a single name of a single beekeeper that meets the criteria you say is a problem.
    Sometimes the lights all shining on me
    Other times I can barely see. -The Grateful Dead

  20. #59
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    Quote Originally Posted by Colino View Post
    I have a lot of respect for Randy Oliver, he starts his article off with a rant, this is part of what he says in the March 2014 issue of ABJ.:
    Do not disillusion yourself. Allowing domesticated package colonies to die year after year is not in any way, shape, or form a contribution to the breeding of mite-resistant stocks. There is a vast difference between breeding for survivor stock and simply allowing commercial bees to die from neglect! By introducing commercial bees year after year into an area, and then allowing those package colonies to first produce drones and then to later die from varroa, these well-meaning but misguided beekeepers screw up any evolutionary progress that the local feral populations might be making towards developing natural resistance to varroa. Not only that, but those collapsing "mite bombs"' create problems for your neighbors. Referring to yourself as a bee-keeper confers upon you a responsibility to the local beekeeping community. Allowing hives to collapse from AFB or varroa makes you a disease-spreading nuisance!
    ...but those same drones are spread by commercial beekeepers.....and if 1 out of every 200 commercial hives swarms in a year (.5%)...then that is well over 12,000 swarms of these same package bee genetics polluting the feral population.

    If the problem is drones and escaped swarms, then let's look at the major contributors to these problems....after all, it is only about 1000 operations that are responsible for 99% of the bees in the US. if we want to keep suceptable drones and swarms under control, then it is the commercial beekeepers that should be targeted....it is much lower hanging fruit and would be more effective than trying to shame 10,000 hobbiest beekeepers.
    Sometimes the lights all shining on me
    Other times I can barely see. -The Grateful Dead

  21. #60
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    Default Re: Conventional Beekeepers Bashing on Treatment Free Beekeepers

    Quote Originally Posted by Colino View Post
    I have a lot of respect for Randy Oliver, he starts his article off with a rant, this is part of what he says in the March 2014 issue of ABJ.:
    Do not disillusion yourself. Allowing domesticated package colonies to die year after year is not in any way, shape, or form a contribution to the breeding of mite-resistant stocks. There is a vast difference between breeding for survivor stock and simply allowing commercial bees to die from neglect! By introducing commercial bees year after year into an area, and then allowing those package colonies to first produce drones and then to later die from varroa, these well-meaning but misguided beekeepers screw up any evolutionary progress that the local feral populations might be making towards developing natural resistance to varroa. Not only that, but those collapsing "mite bombs"' create problems for your neighbors. Referring to yourself as a bee-keeper confers upon you a responsibility to the local beekeeping community. Allowing hives to collapse from AFB or varroa makes you a disease-spreading nuisance!
    ...but those same drones are spread by commercial beekeepers.....and if 1 out of every 200 commercial hives swarms in a year (.5%)...then that is well over 12,000 swarms of these same package bee genetics polluting the feral population.

    If the problem is drones and escaped swarms, then let's look at the major contributors to these problems....after all, it is only about 1000 operations that are responsible for 99% of the bees in the US. if we want to keep suceptable drones and swarms under control, then it is the commercial beekeepers that should be targeted....it is much lower hanging fruit and would be more effective than trying to shame 10,000 hobbiest beekeepers.
    Sometimes the lights all shining on me
    Other times I can barely see. -The Grateful Dead

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