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  1. #21
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    The main point was the need to teach mite monitoring and intervention to stop mite bombing as good beekeeping.
    How to stop the mite bomb is left up to the beekeeper-sugar shakes every 4 days, OA, or a block of dry ice and some sheet plastic are some options. In a perfect world the mite monterning and stacking on manipulations will alow to BYBK to escalate the use of force to head off the mite bomb before the use of chemicals becomes needed

    secondary was to point out that going full IPM to the point of pestisides to save and re queen in no way sets back a BYBK's path to TF any worse then letting the hive die. The effect is the same, the non resistant queen dies and her genetic line ends. The added advantage is it is also the end of those verilant mites, and the BYBK needs only buy a $30 queen instead of a $130 package or a $180 nuc.
    As you point out sticking there head in the sand is a problem, I was totally that new beekeeper.. that why I went TF, that way I didn't have to worry about mites and all that work and expensive treatment and my losses were going to be about the same either way, just ask the inter net......yep there is one born every min Hook, Line, Sinker.

    i don't see michael bush deserving the label of 'taliban' for being passionate about his take on bees. jmho
    .
    nor do I, witch is why in the 1st post I referred to him as what he is, a
    highly respected TF advocate
    and only unmasked his identity to counter point the "I have never seen a sane TF proponent advice on BS to get commercial bees and "let them die"
    It was meant to drive the point home that some very sucessfull, and very sane TF advocates do indeed despence said advice.
    It was not to my intent to call MB any sort of overbearing TF overlord, I have edited the post for full context.. I was focused on making one point, with out catching the insinuation of anther
    SP thanks for pointing that out so this thread doesn't take an unintended turn

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    it seems to be the hardest thing, for a person who got bees, went TF, and it just worked without much effort or even knowledge, to accept that it is not always like that for everyone.
    there is so much truth here, all beekeeping is local
    A lesson that Solomon Parker reinforced for us all when he moved his bees to CO and was crushed by the climate change http://forum.tfbees.net/viewtopic.php?t=165
    Last edited by msl; 03-31-2017 at 06:19 PM.

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  3. #22
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    Quote Originally Posted by msl View Post
    The main point was the need to teach mite monitoring and intervention to stop mite bombing as good beekeeping.
    i agree 100%

    Quote Originally Posted by msl View Post
    going full IPM...
    i agree 100%

    everyone brings something unique to the discussion. i respect your point of view and i'm proud to have the opportunity to converse with you here msl.
    journaling the growth of a (mite) treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  4. #23
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    ipm is an important conversation that needs to be had.

    https://www.beesource.com/forums/show...treatment-free

    Quote Originally Posted by squarepeg View Post
    as we have seen from several recent posts, one of the bigger challenges for those desiring to be treatment free is that tf stock is not always available for purchase.

    we also see the many reports of limited success when beekeepers, beginners in particular, attempt to withdraw treatments cold turkey from colonies that come with a history of being treated...
    ruthie, do mind giving us another cliff note synopsis on how you and your group are achieving varroa control using nonchemical ipm techniques?

    any input from other contributors experienced with nonchemical ipm approaches would be welcome as well.
    journaling the growth of a (mite) treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  5. #24
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    Quote Originally Posted by squarepeg View Post
    ipm is an important conversation that needs to be had.

    ruthie, do mind giving us another cliff note synopsis on how you and your group are achieving varroa control using nonchemical ipm techniques?
    Took me a bit to find the topic, I'm #53 if this link isn't working right. I'll also copy and paste my response here. https://www.beesource.com/forums/show...56#post1507956

    I had been asked to share my track toward "treatment free". I will tell you all up front that I don't ever expect to fall into the Solomon Parker's category for truly Treatment Free, but I have no intention of ever putting a miticide or organic acid on my bees.

    I had wanted to keep bees for over 20 years, but had a young family and someone else in the house that was against it. Circumstances changed by 2013 and the kids grew up so I went looking for what's new in beekeeping. In the mean time, I had spent those years planting up my yard with lots of trees and shrubs for all the pollinators and didn't use chemicals in the garden or on the bushes (mainly because I was too thrifty to spend the money).

    In my bee research, I found a topbar hive kit from Beeline Apiary for $150 and I thought I'd give it a try because I wasn't all that sure I really wanted to be into beekeeping and I wasn't quite as spry as I had been all those years ago so the No-lifting, no-bending sounding like a very good benefit. I never bought into the concept that topbar hives were somehow "more natural" or "more healthy" for bees, but I do think the "single story" beehive might behave a little bit differently than the multi-storied Langstroth hives.

    So in 2013, I convinced a longtime Lang beekeeper to get my topbar hive started with his bees. He makes nucs for many people in the Hampton area, but I have no idea if he was using chemicals on his bees. From what I understand, most of the veteran beekeepers in this area do not use them.

    First year was 1 colony. Second year (2014), I bought a package from Oliverez in California. Couldn't believe how huge that queen was compared to the local mutt in my other colony. Funny thing was, the California bees just sat in their hive on 45 degree days in the winter while the local mutts were out collecting from the mahonia and camellias that were blooming. In 2014, I did splits and bought a second local mutt queen from the guy who got me started, so I had 5 colonies going into winter. I also started holding a monthly meeting for beekeepers that wanted to keep bees in topbar hives so we could all talk about our successes and failures, and gain from each other's experiences.

    That's when I started honing in on what my management practices were so that I could communicate them with other people. These were mostly gardeners like me who liked the idea of having a backyard beehive or two. They wanted a little bit of honey to harvest for themselves and friends, but they were not raising bees for "Honey". I also realized that if the topbar beehive group was to grow, I was going to have to raise the nucs to get these people started so I began making 10 nucs a year and raising the queens for them.

    All my colonies are on screened bottom boards with a solid IPM board underneath, that I keep installed as long as the heat of the summer will allow. Each IPM board is covered with diatomaceous earth, and refreshed as often as weekly if necessary. The bees run the small hives beetles down there and stuff the larvae of SHB and wax moths down there. any mites that fall off are also trapped in the dust and don't return to reinfest the bee colony. Very important that the bees don't roll around in the dust.

    Each colony is also treated monthly with powdered sugar on each comb. (Not the brush-it-between-the-frames stuff that Randy Oliver talks about and then so easily dismisses as something that doesn’t work.) Each comb is turned on its head and liberally coated taking care not to get it in the cells with developing larvae. Special care is also taken with the comb the queen is on so she does not lose her footing and fall outside the hive. But she gets dusted right along with the rest of them. After an hour, I remove the solid IPM board that had DE dust on it, and is now covered in powdered sugar and any mites, and discard the dust in the trash can so I don’t draw ants. The DE is reapplied and the board slid back into place.

    I will also cull capped drone comb at certain times of the year after I am done with the majority of my queen rearing, or if the colony gets too ambitious with raising a ton of drones. And the fact that I raise my own queens, means I am using locally adapted survivor bees from my own hives. No special breeder queens, although I do bring in a treatment-free queen here and there from Sam Comfort and Wildflower Meadows to introduce those genes into the local pool of bees.

    I also like most of my large hives to undergo a mid summer brood break by pulling the queen over to a nuc and letting the main hive requeen with "planned" emergency queen cells. Meaning, they have soft new comb with fresh eggs to easily rework into queen cells. During the requeening, I do weekly powder sugar shakes to really knock back the mite population before fall.

    And I do not use a smoker, but rather a spray bottle with water and anise oil. There is an Egyptian study that says Anise Oil is one of the essential oils that helps control mite reproduction. There are only a few drops per bottle, so I'm not sure if that has anything to do with controlling the mites, but it could be small piece of it. In any case, the anise oil is primarily used to cover up the bee pheromones as I work the hives, which is usually work them weekly.

    I’m sure some of you will wonder if I do sugar shakes or ether rolls to measure the mite count, and I don't do them. Maybe someday if I get to switch jobs, but far too busy for that. I will say I had a Control Hive this past 2016 season. Someone gave me a miter biter queen and I installed her in a hive, still with the screened bottom and IPM board with DE dust, but I did not give her the brood break or do the frequent powder sugar shake on that hive. The hive was fantastic, even ran a pollen trap on it, and I did uncap drone brood at various points in the year to check for mites, which showed a very low level.

    Thought maybe these special queens were the “silver bullet” in varroa control, but during the January blizzard, that was my only hive to perish. The queen survived with about 50 workers, but the rest were dead on the bottom. I did do a sugar roll on them at that time, because I could see mites on the bees (including the queen) and deformed wings on one worker. After the sugar shake and getting 4 mites, I followed up with an ether roll on the same group of bees and got 2 more. Then I counted the bees since I was guestimating that I had a half a cup of bees. Turns out I only had 175 bees, and they had 6 mites in the group, so really high mite numbes. I moved the queen and remaining workers over to a nuc and did a powder sugar shake on them. Checked on her 2 weeks later and they had groomed the mite off of her thorax and they seem to be plodding on, even while getting robbed out by the other bees in my apiary.

    My overwinter hive losses to mites are usually zero. This year, it will be the one hive, but I almost don’t count that one since I wasn’t using my usual methods on it. I lost 2 hives last year that were very tiny splits that froze, and were not varroa related losses. (my small splits all have heaters this year). I currently have one queen from spring 2014 and one from fall 2015. Had another 2014 queen, but she flew the coop this fall when I moved her out of the main hive and into a nuc to requeen the main hive. I will be making my spring nucs from queen cells of the 2014 queen that I still have. She was a great honey producer as well, although the levels of honey in a topbar hive don’t equate to what a Langstroth hive might make.

    So all those different steps are things I teach the newbee backyard beekeepers. It may not be truly treatment free, but I don’t want these people to stick their head in the sand and ignore the problem of mites and run-of-the-mill packages from down south. I hope the Beesource Treatment Free forum will find ways to engage the basic beekeeper in helping them understand the problem and even the small steps they can take toward being part of the solution.

    It’s next to impossible to take a beginner beekeeper who would love the idea of “treatment free” beekeeping (because they think that means “hands off” beekeeping) and tell them “expect to lose over half your hives each year and just breed from the survivors” and think that they are going to want to get into that type of beekeeping or even do that for more than a year or two. We need to be realistic in our expectations and provide a reasonable path for them to follow. More treatment free nuc producers would be great, but if they can’t be found, then requeen early in the season with a treatment free or hygienic queen. But that alone is probably not enough.

  6. #25
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    awesome post ruthie, many thanks!

    let's see if we can move this discussion forward using ruthie's approach as a starting point to hash out the nonchemical ipm options.

    Quote Originally Posted by ruthiesbees View Post
    All my colonies are on screened bottom boards with a solid IPM board underneath, that I keep installed as long as the heat of the summer will allow. Each IPM board is covered with diatomaceous earth, and refreshed as often as weekly if necessary.

    Each colony is also treated monthly with powdered sugar on each comb,
    after an hour, I remove the solid IPM board that had DE dust on it.

    I will also cull capped drone comb at certain times of the year after I am done with the majority of my queen rearing, or if the colony gets too ambitious with raising a ton of drones.

    I also like most of my large hives to undergo a mid summer brood break by pulling the queen over to a nuc and letting the main hive requeen with "planned" emergency queen cells.

    My overwinter hive losses to mites are usually zero. This year, it will be the one hive, but I almost don’t count that one since I wasn’t using my usual methods on it.
    journaling the growth of a (mite) treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  7. #26
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    Quote Originally Posted by msl View Post
    next we have scope creep




    This post is in regards to new BYBKs. Yes they could help by accepting QCs and trying them in their hives, but they are not going to be breeding or developing stock.
    BYBK, as I use the term, is a suburban/urban beekeeper with 2 or so hives, in my area most are limited by zoning laws to 1-3 hives, as such even adding a cell builder, much less a few mating nucs is an imposailty for many not just from a leagle stand point, but from a resources one as well . Furthermore given the reinstrest in the hobby and change in zoning laws there are a LOT of BYBK were they are allowed(at least in my locacation), I am aware of 6 of them within 2.25K of my hives( totaling about 25 colonies),
    I see scope creep as an issue that keeps poping up when addressing this subject, its meaning less to talk about “selection” to a BYBK, too often advice given is not geared to the OP’s situation, people seem to forget what its like to be new with 1-2 hives, to many of us the loss of a few hives is no big thing, to them its their whole world..
    Now a RBK (rural beekeeper) with a few years’ experience and 10 or so hives, Or a group with a club apiary, that is a completely different situation when you are talking about selection and propagation
    .






    I should clairfie that I am not saying you need to treat on your way to becoming TF, I am saying montor your mites and don't let mite bombs happen, there rest is between you and your bees and you leave mine out of it
    I read the paper and i don't think that was an argument about mite bombs. The definitive conclusion was that horizontal transmission occurs, something self evident, (but anecdotal) based on rapid spread of mites in North America. In the big picture, the authors were perhaps (my interpretation) more concerned about apiary and industry practices that created the means for mite diversity to spread. That is movement of bees between regions and between hives by beekeeping practices and hive density. This would have implications for instance in spreading chemical resistant mites from one region to another. I didn't see feral or TF beekeeping on the list of explanations. Its probably there but insignificant on a bigger scale. It also stated that hive to hive drift and robbing is of yet poorly understood.

    Also the exact layout of the experiment wasn't laid out (ie distance between groups of hives, and the history of the bees that were used, beyond they came from one source (but where did the source get its bees?). They also stated that they didn't not have enough time to get a handle on the influence of drifting and robbing.

    Now wouldn't it be even more interesting if this was done in a TF apiary and nature was allowed to take its course?
    So on the list of explanations of mite diversity the authors proposed, beekeeping practices by CONVENTIONAL beekeeping were high on the list, not beekeeping that is more sensitive to ecological dynamics and more self sufficient in terms of raising their own stock. So once again it becomes more important to look at ones own practices in how it affects horizontal transmission, not just of mites but all hangers on including viruses, hive to hive, between apiaries, and between regions.

    But I can think of a number of improvements to my own practices. I bring in very few queens/packages from the outside, so I think that is OK, but there is room for improvement for hive to hive transmission within my apiary. So I'm going to implement robbing screens more intensively this year that will be put on at the beginning of our August dearth.

    I also want to dispel the notion of backyard keepers not making contributions. A net work of TF keepers selecting for survival and production, raising their own queens and supporting each other a bit, would be ideal. It should be actively encouraged and supported by bee clubs. It would broaden the base of selection, reduce the import of new challenges and would stabilize disease dynamics, enhance genetic diversity and over many years, create more genetic diversity. More like how nature does it. She has tricks up her sleeve we are only faintly aware.

  8. #27
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    Jim lyon give the best sumation of my view on the mighty mite bomb thread.
    There is no way of knowing what level of mite invasion comes from where. I don't obsess about things I can't control. I would hope neighboring beekeepers would make an effort to be responsible in their beekeeping practices, including placement of hives, regardless of their philosophy. One is best served worrying more about their own hives and less about others.
    Mls
    You can hope all you want, blame if you want but not control but your own bees and those willing to work with you and so adding mite bomb to the equation for you to be successful makes you unsuccessful before you start. My opinion of course.
    Cheers
    gww
    zone 5b

  9. #28
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    Mite bombs from beekeepers who are not responsible is one of my biggest problems.
    Hope all you want, a significant number out there make little effort and either don't care or don't understand or both.
    Beekeeping is not a 'game' to everyone and more people should understand that.
    MTCW

  10. #29
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    Quote Originally Posted by clyderoad View Post
    Mite bombs from beekeepers who are not responsible is one of my biggest problems.
    Hope all you want, a significant number out there make little effort and either don't care or don't understand or both.
    Beekeeping is not a 'game' to everyone and more people should understand that.
    MTCW
    when you put it like that clyde it's totally understandable where the disdain comes from. i would feel the same way if i were in your shoes. there's no excuse for not caring or not understanding.
    journaling the growth of a (mite) treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  11. #30
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    ruithie, again i very much appreciate the effort you put into this morning's post. best i can tell, you are our resident expert on the successful implementation of nonchemical ipm, or at least you are one of the few willing to share your experiences with it here.

    this thread has taken some twists and turns, so i am going to repost yours in the other 'ipm' thread.
    journaling the growth of a (mite) treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  12. #31
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    Recently did the fall mite treatment round on all my hives. Most bees in pretty good shape, maybe 1/2 the hives showing some evidence of mites such as the odd chewed larva.

    Except for one site, every hive in the yard near death, no live brood left, crawling in mites, few bees. There is no way this site could have got so bad so quick by itself. Virtually certain I know the suspect, a site around 1/2 mile away where a large commercial beekeeper dumped a load of dinks not suitable to go to the manuka. Did a drive by and could see some hives no activity. IE, most likely dead and probably by mites.

    So commercials can be a problem to others around also, although this guy sadly is got old and is not the beekeeper he used to be, and has hired flunkies.

    Did manage to save the hives by the way, treating alone would have been too late for them, but raided another site and got a good comb of near hatching brood to put in each of the sick hives plus put in mite treatment, the bees from the good brood comb were just enough to keep the hive alive for the 3 weeks needed to get some brood of their own coming through, hives now small but will make it, didn't lose a single one.

    But that was definately a case of bees being overwhelmed by mite invasion. Hate to think what the other guys hives are like.
    Last edited by Oldtimer; 04-01-2017 at 05:30 PM.
    "Every viewpoint, is a view from a point." - Solomon Parker

  13. #32
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    Squarepeg
    when you put it like that clyde it's totally understandable where the disdain comes from. i would feel the same way if i were in your shoes. there's no excuse for not caring or not understanding.
    Not as a counter point but more of a reconization of fact. Wether there is excuse for it or not or if you just live in an area of unmanaged excape bees, it still is a fact that can not be controlled with just good will and wishing. Plus the fact that differrent bees live with differrent levels of mite infestation (Maby because the diseise level of the mite is differrent in some areas).

    Since these things can not be controlled, all that is left is to find what works under the conditions that you find yourself in and maby even to reconize that things out of your control can come along and change even those conditions.

    So if it relies on other peoples bees to make you be sucessful with your bees, then you have failed before you start.

    In the end, finding out what you can make work or what does not work for you ends up really being the only real thing that can be effectively adressed. You may promote better to others and have small impact. You may give queens to everyone who will take one in a 20 mile area. You may hand out seeds to your neibors. Enough may respond to make a differrance or may not if you even have the effort to do all of that. If they do and you are watching your bees and can see it, then you can adjust accordingly. In the end it will still be about the what you see in your bees.

    I like what oldtimer said about differrent experiances being what makes a persons mind up (my word) forever. As long as those differrent experiances happen, no one can ever say they are right or the one with the differrent experiance is wrong. Tell kirt webster that he is wrong and is making mite bombs when he is running 600 hundred hives or tell michael palmer he is wrong when he is running 2000 hives. Why would your imput change them into thinking you know more then them and so they should change.

    Better time is spent on working on what you need to do with out them except maby to steal the things that they are doing that will help you with what you want to do.

    I understand the sentiment but wouldn't want to be the one to sit in judgement of who is right. If I did, I would probly pick the one who is closest to how I do it.

    I know the feelings are strong and am glad that I am too dumb at this time to have a firm belief of who is going to end up in beekeeping hell.

    It is very interesting to me, the arguements all around though perk my anti athourity streak and gets me leaning harder evertime somebody says I have to not make bee bombs or I have to quit putting weak bees in the breeder pool. Luckily, that is two things that I am confident will never happen no matter who wants it bad enough.

    Now I can get to watching and stealing Ideals and tactics from successful people and quit worrying about who I want to control and who wants to control me.

    Cheers
    gww

    Ps Posted before seeing oldtimers post, Oldtimer, good thing you were watching your bees so you could adjust to what your bees needed.
    Last edited by gww; 04-01-2017 at 06:08 PM.
    zone 5b

  14. #33
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post

    Except for one site, every hive in the yard near death, no live brood left, crawling in mites, few bees. There is no way this site could have got so bad so quick by itself. Virtually certain I know the suspect, a site around 1/2 mile away where a large commercial beekeeper dumped a load of dinks not suitable to go to the manuka. Did a drive by and could see some hives no activity. IE, most likely dead and probably by mites.

    So commercials can be a problem to others around also, although this guy sadly is got old and is not the beekeeper he used to be, and has hired flunkies.
    Be interesting to see if ANY of those dink hives survived. Hard bond at its hardest.

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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    understood fellers and i appreciate the replies.

    msl, jump back in here and please forgive me if reacted too harshly.

    being in a relatively isolated location i'm somewhat immune to those scenarios, and believe me i'm thankful for that.

    but it kind of gets back to the chicken and eggs dilemma for us all, i.e. on the one hand mite bombs can happen most anywhere to most anyone and if that should happen at an inopportune time one may or may not be able to recover from it.

    one strategy would be to get everyone everywhere to kill every mite they can, and call the orkin man to deal with colonies that have ended up dwellings and trees to eliminate that threat.

    this approach sounds a lot like what sibylle describes as the state of affairs with beekeeping in germany.

    on the other hand, and considering that we are finding more metapopulations of resistant honeybees and hearing more reports from folks like some of the tf contributors here clearly demonstrating that are bees which are not fazed by varroa,

    with bees like this the whole discussion becomes mute.

    it seems like there would be more interest and support for those willing to work toward developing that kind of stock. i'm not sure why the disconnect, but i was informed early on by someone seasoned and wise that beekeepers tend to be a peculiar lot.
    journaling the growth of a (mite) treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    msl I appreciate your common sense approach.

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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    TF?

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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    TF=Treatment Free
    Quote Originally Posted by squarepeg View Post
    msl, jump back in here and please forgive me if reacted too harshly.
    Still here and no you weren’t, you corrected a quote that could have been misinterpreted and have a demtmantral effect on this thread. I have just been spending some time choosing my words carefully

    Quote Originally Posted by gww View Post
    Tell kirt webster that he is wrong and is making mite bombs when he is running 600 hundred hives or tell michael palmer he is wrong when he is running 2000 hives.
    Once again, scope creep, this isn’t about a beekeeper with 2k hives, 600 hives, or even 10-20 hives, this is about the BYBK with1-3 hives
    2nd, if you refer to the video link in the OP, MP treats once a year, and is a outspoken critic on mite bombers


    Quote Originally Posted by lharder View Post
    I read the paper and I don't think that was an argument about mite bombs.
    I think it was very much about mite bombs
    In terms of relevance for beekeeping practice, we could demonstrate that effective Varroa treatment at the end of July, when undertaken alone, is not sufficient for successful overwintering if the mite invasion pressure is high. It is likely that a high density of Varroa infested honey bee colonies within Fight range will increase the invasion pressure
    Even colonies that are largely mite-free at the beginning of August can build up threatening Varroa populations by the beginning of winter. Our data on overwintering also emphasize the risk of high Varroa infestations late in the year.
    our study points out some general aspects that should be considered for the implementation of Varroa treatment concepts. First, IPM programs should be coordinated region-wide to reduce the Varroa reinvasion pressure. Second, additional Varroa diagnostic measures are recommended during the period after summer Varroa treatment. This is the only way for the beekeeper to detect and then react to unexpectedly high mite infestations
    Hey were all have our own opinions based on our experiences and our inherent bias to data, I know I am bias to mite bombs are an issue, If you have a study showing the mite bomb is nonissue I would love to read it so I can adjust my stance, for me it’s not about being right, it’s learning.
    Also keep in mind if its not an issue for you, doesn't mean its not an issue in a different location, and I am focusing on a very particular location were it is an issue.

    So to head back to the direction SP is requesting as the mite bomb subject is getting in the way of information that is likely useful to both sides of that debate.

    Great post Ruthie!

    As we move in this direction I think it would be good to read Randys work on sugar dusting, He just updated it last month with the improved mite modeling and there are some good take homes on the treatment schedule to achieve meaningful impact on mite
    One study he sighted is showing 3.5% adult bee mortality rate at 4 days after treatment and a 50% mite kill per sugar treatment, couple that with Randy’s suggested treatment schedule and you’re not killing an insignificant amount of bees. 7% a month to just hold the mite pop stable with 2X treatments, and up 17-18% to hit the mites hard and really knock them back with 5 treatments 4-5 days apart. That a bit of a staggering number, better then losing the hive for sure, and it looks like it may be possibly to save it with sugar, but……I sure wasn’t expecting that kind of mortality rate. .
    One of the studies discussion points reminds us there is (almost) always a cost and some of this “feel good” stuff isn’t always effective and or negtivitaly impacts the bees much more so then we think.
    Our data further suggest that those products which people feel are “natural” varroa controls (for example, the dust controls) may affect bees negatively in other ways. We do not feel that all natural varroa control methods are inherently harmless to bees
    Does anyone have a link to a good study on OA treatments bee mortality rate? It would be interesting to run the numbers on % of bees killed to achieve mite reduction below threshold

    SP, for the sake of discussion how do we define chemical free?
    I don’t see a difference whether it’s SiO2*nH2O, C12H22O11, or H2C2O4 being put in the hive (DE, sugar, OA), they are all chemicals and all three can be acquired as food grade. OA and sugar are both plant based products (or synthesized and chemical the same) and part of our normal diet.
    DE is a registered pesticide, so I see little difference between using it vs OA.

    Perhaps it may be better to draw the line as nontoxic or bio mechanical ? it doesn't have the marketing buzz of chemical free, natural, or organic, but it is probably more descriptive of the intended use.
    Last edited by msl; 04-01-2017 at 09:34 PM.

  19. #38
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    Quote Originally Posted by msl View Post
    SP, for the sake of discussion how do we define chemical free?
    definitions are a pain in the toe msl.

    i've been using 'nonchemical' to describe ruthie's methods even though sugar and diatomaceous earth are certainly chemicals.

    i guess for me a chemical would be something that would directly kill organisms in the hive thereby changing the biological landscape in there.

    there is some thinking that the hive has good bugs as well as bad bugs just like our g.i. tract does, and those good bugs are necessary to keep the bad bugs at bay.

    i asked ruthie about that on the other thread, because i wasn't sure if the powdered sugar dusting had been shown to change the hive flora, and she didn't think that it does.
    journaling the growth of a (mite) treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  20. #39
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    mls
    I have three hives, surly this thread is about people in my situation.

    1. You did bring the topic of mite bomb.
    2. Most bee keepers are told if they want to be successful they should immulate successful bee keepers. Most would consider michael palmer and kert webster as successful.

    3. You pointed out a study to back you position.

    When I pointed out my position that trying to control mite bombs is impossible and all you can do is worry about your bees and the rest can not be controlled by you and so is a waste of energy, I used reasons why just as you used a paper to back your reasons.

    Because I used 600 hive and 2000 hive aperies to make a point it is no more scope creep then using a paper that says reigional controls would help.

    Then to use a quote that is a portion of the context of my post and say that those names don't matter because one is a treater that speaks the same language as you that mite bombs are bad but to discount that the other bee keeper says he doesn't do counts and would not now think of killing a mite because he is a good beekeeper and does not have a mite problim then seems to hide the point that I was making if I don't clarify.

    Clarification. Kirt webster does not take mite counts and would not think of killing a mite now.

    That way the point I was making about calling who is wrong has more to do with belief system of the caller.

    Then you make your point to Iharder that the paper is about mite bombs to reinforce your origional position and which again would make kert wrong.

    The papers over all point that I get from you highlighted portion basicaly makes my point also in the last sentance. It tells you that mites are going to be transfered and the last sentance says
    Varroa diagnostic measures are recommended during the period after summer Varroa treatment. This is the only way for the beekeeper to detect and then react to unexpectedly high mite infestations
    In a nut shell, you need to watch your bees.

    I got my bees from a non treater and he may have sole me a mite bomb, but they are still alive and I don't hold it against him cause he didn't lie about it and I didn't have to buy them.

    My whole post was basically that learning what it takes to keep your bees alive in the circumstances you find your self in and not worrying about controlling the world around you was all you could do. If you live in a area with a lot of excaped bees that set up shop near you and it infects your hive with mite, better time is spent reacting to that affect on you bees, if lucky in a differrent area then react to that, but relying or blaming others actions doesn't make you bees healthy, only you can do that.

    Mls, I love your post even if I have a differrent position and say so on some things, I figure you are helping me learn and I may someday change my mind and I know you have a lot to offer on things I agree with. I hope you see that I am just making a point that there are a lot of people out there with some success who feel differrently then others and I am unwilling to call them wrong or try to make them act like me. I want to know what they are doing so I can learn more of what I can try and do.

    Cheers
    gww

    PS mls I see you edited out your kirt webster remark where you indicated he didn't have a mite problim because he was a good bee keeper.
    Last edited by gww; 04-01-2017 at 10:05 PM.
    zone 5b

  21. #40
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    Default Re: A shift in message? The case for IPM instead of bond as the path to TF for new ba

    It is very interesting to me, the arguements all around though perk my anti athourity streak and gets me leaning harder evertime somebody says I have to not make bee bombs or I have to quit putting weak bees in the breeder pool.
    They can take our hives, but they'll never take our freedom.
    David. Cheerful beekeeping

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