They are all dead... - Page 3
Page 3 of 5 FirstFirst 12345 LastLast
Results 41 to 60 of 86
  1. #41
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Seattle WA
    Posts
    1,151

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Vandieman, My guess would also be mites. If you go to your state beekeeping forum, located at http://wabeekeepersforum.proboards.com/ , you will see a question regarding losses for this winter. There are some very experienced beekeepers there and so far, almost everyone has lost 25% of their hives. Like it or not, most of the losses of beehives in this country are caused by mites. The summer of 2015, due to the very early spring, the drought and all the other factors, appears to have caused the mite to multiply very early and by the time folks treated in August, the usual time to treat here, it was too late. As stated before, we all want to be treatment free but if the hives are dying from mites, treating is the only option.

  2. Remove Advertisements
    BeeSource.com
    Advertisements
     

  3. #42
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    Portugal
    Posts
    1,288

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    >>I have a friend who got me in to this who has never had a hive make it past January 1st. He loses them to mites every time. However when I question his tactics he simply states that he wants to keep them completely naturally and will not do anything (treatment, QE, Drone frame freezing, oil pans) that nature doesn't provide. >>

    How can he pretend maintain hives "naturally" if the environment has an element (varroa mites) that "naturally" should not be there?
    In my opinion this is a disproportionate requirement that he does to their bees in the light of the resources the bees have available.

    I wonder if your friend would make this experimentation with dogs or cats, for example.

  4. #43
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Algoma District Northern Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    4,743

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Were things really that idyllic back in the good old days when everything was natural? Didn't local populations get wiped out by disease or pests and geographic separation stopped the nuisance in its tracks with either, or both, host and parasite going to zero or near zero population, only to slowly be repopulated from outside.

    How can we restore "nature" to an un-natural world. Can you un- ring a bell? Some of our machinations are with us now and we can't simply wish them away. It doesn't need to stop one from wishing though!

    Refrain from an old song "The candyman can 'cause he mixes it with love and makes the world taste good"
    Frank

  5. #44
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    Posts
    141

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Vandieman,
    Beekeeping is no longer easy. You must learn bee biology, varroa biology, be able to adapt to weather patterns & how they effect your bees and pathogens. As Dudelt mentioned about 2015 being a different than normal weather pattern over a lot of the country, it's difficult for even very experienced beekeepers. A very experienced beekeeper who has never led me astray on any beekeeping issue lost 70% of his 100 hives this past fall---so far! He got busy with his business but treated as he normally does & didn't catch the unusually high late season mite loads until it was too late. Even good, knowledgable beekeepers will lose bees if they miss something. It's even more difficult for beekeepers just learning this passion. You have been given some good advice in this thread. Learn from it. We all want you to succeed no matter how you decide to keep your bees, but like they say "You have to learn to walk before you can run" Good luck & future success.

    Paul

  6. #45
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Morro Bay, California, USA
    Posts
    2,243

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Quote Originally Posted by crofter View Post
    Were things really that idyllic back in the good old days when everything was natural?
    I kept bees in the 1970's in the Virginia Shenandoah, in university labs in Pennsylvania, and in some other spots. American Foulbrood was a ubiquitous threat. The unheralded benefit of Varroa was that AFB nearly disappeared for two decades. The disease carrying hives were killed off.

  7. #46
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Suffolk Co, NY, USA
    Posts
    3,626

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Quote Originally Posted by crofter View Post
    Were things really that idyllic back in the good old days when everything was natural?
    The guy I helped a long time ago was anything but natural. I was just a laborer and box builder for him and really had no interest
    in what he was doing in the hives or why, but all was not rosy and he had his treatments in the metal cabinet and used them.
    I started building his boxes because some old stuff he'd gotten with afb nearly wiped him out and he wanted all new wood for every hive.
    That said, there seemed to be a well rehearsed rhythm to his bee keeping. And folks with a hive or two did ok too, few if any lost bees within a year like now. Since I have had my own bees and my own operation the mite has caused turmoil with management and treatments for them. The rhythm is returning but it's far from well rehearsed
    like it was.
    Other guys on here have much more to offer re the good old days and in what ways they were and were not but that's my experience.

  8. #47
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Roy WA USA
    Posts
    33

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Wanted to give one last reply to thank everyone for chiming in on my issue. I have been talking with Lauri some as suggested and am working on dissecting my hives and then will be trying to prep the equipment for another go around.

    My apologies to anyone who I was less than friendly with, I was rather upset about having just found my girls dead... It is surprising how attached I felt to that batch of insects.

    I'll be looking for advice on how to start again, which I'll start a new thread for, but if anyone wants to chime in on the best means of starting over fresh... My current theory/plan (very tentative, but with some input from Lauri thus far) is to buy package bees from Oregon, either Italians or carniolans (any input?) and immediately treat for mites upon receipt, help them build up for a few cycles before requeening from local stock soon enough that the new queen will have time to replace all the girls in the hive before the end of summer.

    Again, thanks for your help and especially to those of you who used kid gloves with me when I was fragile.

  9. #48
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Hopkins, MI USA
    Posts
    915

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Quote Originally Posted by Vandieman View Post
    Wanted to give one last reply to thank everyone for chiming in on my issue. I have been talking with Lauri some as suggested and am working on dissecting my hives and then will be trying to prep the equipment for another go around.

    My apologies to anyone who I was less than friendly with, I was rather upset about having just found my girls dead... It is surprising how attached I felt to that batch of insects.

    I'll be looking for advice on how to start again, which I'll start a new thread for, but if anyone wants to chime in on the best means of starting over fresh... My current theory/plan (very tentative, but with some input from Lauri thus far) is to buy package bees from Oregon, either Italians or carniolans (any input?) and immediately treat for mites upon receipt, help them build up for a few cycles before requeening from local stock soon enough that the new queen will have time to replace all the girls in the hive before the end of summer.

    Again, thanks for your help and especially to those of you who used kid gloves with me when I was fragile.
    The only thing I would consider adding to that advice is when you requeen, assuming you allow them to build up to six or so frames of brood AND you have drawn comb. Rather than disbatch the original queen, split her off with two frames of brood and start another hive with her. That way you end up with two hives, learn to do a split, and it will be early enough if something goes wrong you could re-combine them and possibly split again later. Good luck!!
    zone 5b
    Back in 2019!

  10. #49
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Bergen County, NJ
    Posts
    904

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    2016 will be my first year into beek and this thread opened my eyes for few thing. Hopefully I will learn. When it comes to treatment, I changed my opinions three times in the last three months :-). Couple of things stand out from this thread:

    1. Easy to get excited about Treatment Free. Who doesnt want minimal work and expenditure ? But do I understand amount of work it takes to be TF ?
    2. Manage hives similar to (or EXACTLY) as the person you got them from. If I want TF, I should get my starters from a local TF supplier and get full handle on IPM
    3. Monitor closely and do not hesitate to take action
    4. All bee management is local. If everyone else around treats, it may be years, lot of heartache, lost money before seeing a successful TF survivors. Getting from local TF beek may ease the process a bit.
    5. Chemistry is basis for Life and everything around is Chemical in nature. Some may differentiate between synthetic and naturally occurring chemicals. But I dont think I can avoid ANY treatment and still come out ok year after year.

  11. #50
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Danbury, CT
    Posts
    2,977

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Quote Originally Posted by Vandieman View Post
    ...... treat for mites upon receipt, help them build up for a few cycles before requeening from local stock soon enough that the new queen will have time to replace all the girls in the hive before the end of summer.
    My first comment would be to find who the producer of the packages is and call them directly to find out what their mite treatment procedures are. Some package producers treat right before packaging and repeating that could be lethal at the worst or set the colony back at the best.

    You can evaluate the mite load in the package before hiving them. Pull out the syrup can, use a 2x4 as a shim and tilt the package on it's side on a hard surface for 24 hrs, then do a mite drop count. You can place fondant on the screen and spritz with water to keep them in good health while they are on their sides.

    If you are starting with 4 again I would not requeen all of them with local stock, do half and see how it works out... you might find the local stock isn't all it is cracked up to be and the money spent for the extra queens was money better spent elsewhere.

    Get a composition journal and start keeping a diary of your daily interactions with each hive.... when you have failures you can compare what you did differently with the hives that succeeded.
    Always question Conventional Wisdom.

  12. #51
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Suffolk Co, NY, USA
    Posts
    3,626

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Quote Originally Posted by DaisyNJ View Post
    2016 will be my first year......
    you are on the right track and have given yourself and real good chance of a successful and enjoyable experience with honey bees
    if you implement these thoughts when the time comes.

  13. #52
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Bergen County, NJ
    Posts
    904

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Quote Originally Posted by clyderoad View Post
    you are on the right track and have given yourself and real good chance of a successful and enjoyable experience with honey bees
    if you implement these thoughts when the time comes.
    I guess the time will tell. I am bracing for impact :-)

  14. #53
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Derry, New Hampshire
    Posts
    2,295

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Quote Originally Posted by DaisyNJ View Post
    I guess the time will tell. I am bracing for impact :-)
    My lessons learnt from my first year? Treat. Better yet add in the cost and purchase the treatments in spring. Esp if you only have one or two hives it will be too late before you realize something is wrong.

  15. #54
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    10,037

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Quote Originally Posted by Vandieman View Post
    Wanted to give one last reply to thank everyone for chiming in on my issue. I have been talking with Lauri some as suggested and am working on dissecting my hives and then will be trying to prep the equipment for another go around.
    Sounds like you on the right track.

    Wonder if every thread you will start will turn into a kind of monster like this one was!

  16. #55
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Stone County Ar. USA
    Posts
    449

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Quote Originally Posted by Harley Craig View Post
    and yet she is very open and honest about her need to treat, sure she has been able to keep some colonies off treatments for extended amounts of time, but she has a very intimate knowledge of what her bees need and when. The best advice I was ever given was obtain bees locally from someone who is successful and keep them EXACTLY like they do. Once you have that figured out..... then experiment if you want.
    Retired wannabee Hillbilly Farmer in backwoods Arkansas
    Our biggest crop is rocks ...

  17. #56
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Stone County Ar. USA
    Posts
    449

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Quote Originally Posted by kaizen View Post
    My lessons learnt from my first year? Treat. Better yet add in the cost and purchase the treatments in spring. Esp if you only have one or two hives it will be too late before you realize something is wrong.
    NOW hold on there ... I bought my bees from a guy that's been TF for 13 years now I think it is . I'm coming up on my 3rd summer and have never treated ...
    BUT I did monitor mite levels the first summer . I didn't the 2nd summer because all hives (1 in '14 , splits/swarms to 4 in '15) had a brood break - AND they're supposed to be TF bees.
    I will be watching mite levels closely this summer , both because I don't plan on brood breaks in all hives and because I don't know who my virgin queens mated with . If I'm lucky , the TF beek I bought from has saturated the area with his genetics (he lives ~7 miles away and has sold colonies to others that live close to me) and my bees will keep the traits he has bred for . If I'm not , I'll be treating with OAV to keep my bees alive . <<Aside - I live in a very isolated area , only one commercial op and he's over 20 miles away . Until I got bees , I hadn't seen a single honey bee here in the over 10 years we had the property .>>
    I say there are a LOT of things to be considered , and blanket statements like that might be inaccurate . I might be one of the lucky ones that get away with TF from the start ... or I may be treating to keep them alive . Only time and inspections will tell .
    Retired wannabee Hillbilly Farmer in backwoods Arkansas
    Our biggest crop is rocks ...

  18. #57

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Quote Originally Posted by Terry C View Post
    I'm coming up on my 3rd summer and have never treated ...
    Does this mean that you are in the middle of your second winter? If so, do you understand that it's a bit early to be bragging?
    Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted. - Emerson

  19. #58
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Stone County Ar. USA
    Posts
    449

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Quote Originally Posted by beemandan View Post
    Does this mean that you are in the middle of your second winter? If so, do you understand that it's a bit early to be bragging?
    ABSOLUTELY ! However , let me qualify that . I have 4 hives , 3 are pretty strong and one is kinda puny , always was a bit behind the others . All hives were at or over 100 Lbs at the first of December - that's a deep and one medium . There has been no sign of DWV or any other indication of disease . Hives 1 & 2 are the strongest , and have a lot of activity on warm days , 3 (the weakling) a little , and #4 a fair amount . The hives have been consuming stores in a direct relationship with strength , varying from 3-4 lbs/month to 1-2 , and #3 no noticeable difference . I fully expect to lose that hive , simply because we're coming into the worst part of our winter here and from what I can tell the cluster is pretty small . But they may make it and if so , depending on how much honey they make , might be a prime candidate for after-solstice nucs . Of course that also depends on how the other 3 do too ...
    Hey , if I come out of this winter with only one colony , I can come back - and will have gained invaluable knowledge from the experience .
    I'm an optimist ...
    Retired wannabee Hillbilly Farmer in backwoods Arkansas
    Our biggest crop is rocks ...

  20. #59

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Quote Originally Posted by Terry C View Post
    I'm an optimist ...
    An important quality....whether a conventional or treatment free beekeeper.
    Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted. - Emerson

  21. #60
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Bell County, KY, USA
    Posts
    590

    Default Re: They are all dead...

    Quote Originally Posted by Terry C View Post
    I'm coming up on my 3rd summer and have never treated ...
    Keep a close eye on them.
    The third year is when they typically crash.

Page 3 of 5 FirstFirst 12345 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •