treatment free bees in ireland
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    jackson county, alabama, usa

    Default treatment free bees in ireland

    "In North County Dublin, Ireland, a region that has a relatively self-contained beekeeping regime with little movement of colonies or queens into the area, tolerance (co-adaptation) to varroa mites is becoming established. This has occurred without any mite treatment since 2010, and no bee breeding or special colony selection."

    journaling the growth of a (mite) treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Rosebud Missouri

    Default Re: treatment free bees in ireland

    I read it, thanks for posting.
    zone 5b

  4. #3

    Default Re: treatment free bees in ireland

    many thanks for posting.
    It confirmes the path the Lusbys and many other took.
    Hence, the use of open mesh floors exposes colonies to greater thermal risk in temperate areas during the critical spring build-up period, and from the foregoing also gives varroa mites a potential reproductive advantage.
    Narrow bee space between frames, small cell breeding more bees in a smaller area needs a smaller number of bees to stabilize boodnest temperature.

    However, increasingly in North County Dublin drone brood is being observed higher up the brood combs and closer to the centre of the brood nest, thereby exposing it to a higher brood cell temperature.
    Drone corners cut out of foundations on every frame, no drone frames at the outside to breed mites ( or use those to cull as IPM by the treaters), on natural comb this is natural arrangement by the bees, therefore my claim that bee colonies in warré hives are better protected and easier to keep tf.

    have demonstrated that varroa mites have a preference for cells cooler than 33°C,
    use as mite traps, healthy workers and sick drones, sick drones have no chance in matings

    During the early stages of the non-treatment period, clinical signs were high and late summer purges with dead and dying bees in front of the hives common.
    To start resistance and tolerance every colony ( and beeyard) has to go through a crisis and this triggers mite fighting, as Kefuss said: there must be mites present all the time.

  5. #4

    Default Re: treatment free bees in ireland

    New cases of scientifically proven success stories of bees surviving without treatments keep popping.

    Again it was interesting to notice that it seems to take about ten years. The author had been TF for 7 years, but he states:
    "By 2010 a more benign mite/honey bee relationship was becoming evident in the region. "

    So there had been happening some positive things before 2010.

    Quote:" Migratory beekeeping is not common and overall there is limited movement of colonies into or within the region.
    By May 2017, almost two thirds had adopted a non-treatment approach. Colonies typically raise their own queens, as in the case of the parent hive in a swarming colony, after the beekeeper has removed a second colony with the old queen that then remains within the region. The large increase in beginner-beekeepers (Association membership has more than doubled since 2010) and the policy of providing starter colonies from within the region have resulted in a large increase in colonies, with almost all of them arising from within. "

    Beginners, open to new ideas, are maybe playing more important role than we realize in the future transformation from T to TF beekeeping.

    When I started 2001 I was told that our bones will get white before any progress in varroa resistance will happen. Encouraging, uh ?

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Denver Metro Area CO, USA

    Default Re: treatment free bees in ireland

    Yep, as I have been harping on lately Step one is to stem the flow of outside genetics, that takes local propagation and distribution. Clubs working to organizing members to pull a late summer nuc instead organizing bulk package buys for there members would be a huge start.
    Last edited by msl; 06-12-2018 at 01:34 PM.

  7. #6

    Default Re: treatment free bees in ireland

    Quote Originally Posted by msl View Post
    Clubs working to organizing members to pull a late summer nuc instead organizing bulk package buys for there members would be a huge start.
    Yes. But it´s not reality here. It will need many more years, still there are some long time tf beekeepers hiding behind the public screen. How can they be tf for years? What are the parameters?

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Hamilton, Alabama

    Default Re: treatment free bees in ireland

    The bees in question are A. m. Mellifera. I've mentioned before that the first resistant colony I found was strongly influenced by AMM. My bees still carry a strong dose of the genetics as shown by their behavior.

    He posits reduced mite virulence as one mechanism in colony survival. Based on his description of numbers of mites per colony, it is a reasonable theory. The article does not provide enough information to conclusively determine if this is a factor.

    Winter survival rates are very similar to what I observed from 2004 though 2010. I was experiencing moderate loss until 2010 when colony winter survival went to about 90% and has stayed near there since. 2005 was my first full year with zero treatments.

    The one consistent theme is that bees left to adapt to varroa eventually do so.
    NW Alabama, 50 years, 20 colonies and growing, sideliner, treatment free since 2005, 14 frame square Dadant broodnest


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