Do I really need to medicate? - Page 3
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  1. #41

    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    Quote Originally Posted by crofter View Post
    ."

    Sybllle: a snip from your post> "My comment to the so called "neglected " colonies: they are our future hope.
    Iīm with a group which observes free living colonies which survive in spite of the worst circumstances and we want to find out why. They are the new "ferals" and might keep good genetics."

    From what I gather the ferals which move towards survival tend to bring out their inherent traits of smaller colonies, frequent swarming, defensive behaviour and much less honey production than our most common commercial stocks. I think that the majority of people would not thank you for your efforts to reduce the need to treat for mites if that is to be the new norm!

    I suggest that a better situation mite develop if the same effort were put into manipulating the varroa genetics but that seems not to have the same emotional appeal as so called bee improving. I would be far more likely to make contributions to some entity that was engaged in mite genetic research. Mites are the problem.
    Funny thing is, the ferals which are observed in an area near me by scientists, they are not what you claim they become. They are escaped domesticated bees and they live there for some years. They are not more defensive, they are not more swarmy, about the honey stores I donīt know. IMHO the stores and harvest mirror the flow situation and are a result of artificial feeding, propagating strengh of colony.
    Why not use their survivor traits in breeding attempts?
    And funny thing is, I quoted the scientific reserch group of Jürgen Tautz which observes the ferals. They seem to think the same as I and no beekeepers seem to have a problem with this, at least I see no protesting in the bee journal articles.

    Symbiosis is a term usually employed to describe a relationship which is mutually beneficial to both organisms. How does the presence or behaviour of the Varroa mite ever benefit the Honey-Bee ?
    LJ
    There are no communities without parasites.
    But with the treatments and the unnatural husbandry we disturb the communities.
    The book scorpion chelifer cancroides, for example, probably lives with the honey bees in community since the beginning of time, it feeds on the parasites of the bees and was always present until the long-term treatments began and the mobile frame hives were introduced.
    The symbiosis takes place over these communities and builds up again and again on new parasites, which takes many generations.

    https://chelifer.de/buecherskorpione/


    It is not very clear and tested how the artificial chemicals and management affect the bee colony.
    Bees make their own antibiotics, propolis, it is not welcome in the hives.
    Bees eat fungi, honey and other organisms that they need for intestinal hygiene, beekeepers methods of hygiene and medicines kills the helpful life.
    The honey is harvested and replaced with artificial food, also frightening is that this artificial food for the bees is healthier today than their natural diet through agriculture with their sprays.

    Bees communicate via fragrances and pheromones, which are strongly influenced by essential oils and are disturbed for hours or even days with every hive check or change of hive configuration.

    So what if this is the key to tf beekeeping? It is never tested over years with many colonies except with the feral hives in isolated areas which developed into resistant bee stock being left on their own.

    Naturally nesting colonies stay smaller, rear less brood and swarm frequently, all of which reduces the reproductive potential of Varroa mites. Beekeepers, however, usually prevent swarming and provide unnaturally spacious hives, resulting in large colonies with continuous brood rearing activity
    So beekeeping management or trait? I read herer about swarm prevention menagement all the time so swarm urge is present in domesticated colonies too.
    Although feral honey bee colonies can be a rich source for studying the natural interaction of honey bees with the forest environment (Seeley, 1985) and they can represent an important reservoir of genetic diversity
    https://peerj.com/articles/4602/
    Last edited by 1102009; 10-22-2018 at 12:02 AM. Reason: info added

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  3. #42
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    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    Hi Sibylle,
    I know absolutely nothing about book scorpions, so looked them up on Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pseudoscorpion) - this is the opening paragraph:

    Pseudoscorpions are generally beneficial to humans since they prey on clothes moth larvae, carpet beetle larvae, booklice, ants, mites, and small flies. They are tiny and inoffensive, and are rarely seen due to their small size, despite being common in many environments. Pseudoscorpions often carry out phoresy, a form of commensalism in which one organism uses another for the purpose of transport.
    Immediately one reads about beneficial behaviour towards one or other organisms - and as you say yourself, this organism is known to feed on bee parasites - so yes, I'd accept that there's evidence of symbiosis here. (Are you suggesting that book scorpions are an effective remedy for the problem of the Varroa mite ?)
    But where one has an aggressor and a victim, I don't think it's quite so reasonable to be applying the same term 'symbiotic behaviour'.

    Parasitism leading to serious injury or death of the host is - to my mind - in a much different category. Should we humans not be relieving ourselves (by whatever means necessary) of our own parasites: tape-worms, round-worms, and worms such as Onchocerca Volvulus which causes blindness ?

    The history of medicine is one of the elimination of these and similar organisms, to make our lives as healthy as possible. Of course such organisms are not completely eliminated from the face of the Earth, but enough of them are to make our lives bearable. Would you really want to go back to a life before modern medicine ?

    And - if we ourselves are so ready and willing to seek medical assistance with regard to our own diseases and parasites - ought we not to extend a similar courtesy to the animals under our care ?

    Is it not bordering on hypocrisy to be subjecting animals to a 'Live and Let Die' method of husbandry, whilst not being prepared to live by that same protocol ourselves ?
    LJ
    A Heretics Guide to Beekeeping http://heretics-guide.atwebpages.com/

  4. #43

    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    Hi LJ
    (Are you suggesting that book scorpions are an effective remedy for the problem of the Varroa mite ?)
    But where one has an aggressor and a victim, I don't think it's quite so reasonable to be applying the same term 'symbiotic behaviour'.
    Not really but the scorpion hold the mites at bay a little bit. They are bred and sold here but need some time to develop numbers and they need a habitat to breed which must be added to your hive configuration.
    You need many scorpions because they do not eat only mites.
    Well yes, you got me, itīs probably not the right term. But who knows what will be found when more information is provided about the mites. One symbiotic behaviour might be the mites make extinct the weak genetics, which is rather an advantage.

    Is it not bordering on hypocrisy to be subjecting animals to a 'Live and Let Die' method of husbandry, whilst not being prepared to live by that same protocol ourselves ?
    As I recall the beekeeping industry hoped to get rid of the mites in the beginning but never suceeded.
    believe me, if some method is found which will make the mites go away forever contrary to making it more strong and virulent I will follow and treat. So far no hope.

    With humans,
    those pests and diseases which once and again are considered extinct suddenly pop up again and so far there is no remedy to many diseases. Todayīs medicine makes it easier to bear disease and makes you live longer despite sickness. Thatīs good and may be compared with bee treatments. But then why more and more treatments on bees?

  5. #44
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    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    Quote Originally Posted by little_john View Post
    Symbiosis is a term usually employed to describe a relationship which is mutually beneficial to both organisms. How does the presence or behaviour of the Varroa mite ever benefit the Honey-Bee ?
    LJ
    According to Google:

    What are the types of symbiotic relationships?
    There are 3 types of symbiosis:

    Parasitism: parasite benefits, host is hurt. ...
    Commensalism: one species benefits, the other is neither hurt nor helped. ...
    Mutualism: both species benefit. ...
    Keystone predators may control key competitors at lower levels in the food chain, thus allowing other species to thrive.

    Symbiosis - Marietta College
    https://w3.marietta.edu/~biol/biomes/symbiosis.htm
    This brings up this question:
    - Is "parasite of your parasite" is your friend? Maybe yes.
    - Do we promote the "parasites of our parasites" or we are actually killing them off with our blind attempts to "fix things"? Maybe yes, maybe no. No idea if anyone ever checked.
    - What about "the parasites of the parasites of the parasites"? Should I continue?

    So, when doing the sledge-hammer approach of "fixing things" via some convenient chem. treatments do we have any slightest idea what the heck are we doing?
    Maybe No.
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame/chemical-free experimentations.

  6. #45
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    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    Speaking of the human and livestock worms...

    Of course, the worms have been developing resistance to drugs as well (these are macro-parasites and similar to varroa in that; not microscopic and not quickly adapting bacteria/virus, to be sure).
    Chemical sledgehammer approaches also stop working, only as expected.
    So the same - quick chem fixes turn into breeding operation for the chem-resistant worms.
    Now, this may turn out quite ugly.

    Many googles links this one:
    After many years of use of these same drugs for controlling roundworms in livestock, high levels of resistance have developed, threatening the sustainability of these livestock industries in some locations.
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3913213/
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame/chemical-free experimentations.

  7. #46
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    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    A rotation with different classes of worm treatments is standard practice and quite handily prevents the development of resistance. Resistance to a particular one is quite quickly dropped. The same appears to be true of most of the varroa treatments.

    The statement would be true in theory but it is misleading in any kind of informed useage. Scare tactics!

    As for the book scorpions idea it is mostly hogwash. They are expensive, not very effective, and if you look into what is required to propagate them you will find they are more complicated to rear than bees are. A neighboring beekeeper to my son invested time and money into that idea and that was a short lived idea! That puts money in the pocket of the promoters!
    Frank

  8. #47

    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    Quote Originally Posted by crofter View Post

    As for the book scorpions idea it is mostly hogwash. They are expensive, not very effective, and if you look into what is required to propagate them you will find they are more complicated to rear than bees are. A neighboring beekeeper to my son invested time and money into that idea and that was a short lived idea! That puts money in the pocket of the promoters!
    You need no money because the scorpions are to be found in dry barns and will enter beehives on their own if those are not treated and not kept hygienic. The adult scorpions are not killed by OA but by FA, the young are killed by OA too because they feed from microorganisms which are not present if you treat with OA. All new research here.

    And I agree the scorpion is not the golden nugget. Donīt forget the genetics of the surviving bee stock.

    I had seen a scorpion running on my hive 2014 and I found a nest in an old metal bin filled with bark I use in my garden to propagate small insects.

    But the nymphs need a long time to become adults, 2 years as I remember and to keep the scorpions satisfied you need nesting places inside the hive. So the propagating of microorganisms and helpful insects is for people only who really care for hive configurations following nature. In former times the scorpions lived in the straw and clay skeps which provided good nesting places.

    Fact is: the mites will not go away and when a new pest comes the bees still are not resistant to an old one.
    Fact is: there are commercial beekeepers working tf and sucessful
    Fact is: there is the soft bond approach which makes tf beekeeping a future possibility and avoids too many losses but treaters and treatment free beeks both fear the work of monitoring.

    And fact is: the honey taken from treatment free bees is the sweetest of all, the honey taken from varroa deadouts is the most bitter.

  9. #48
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    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    Quote Originally Posted by SiWolKe View Post
    You need no money because the scorpions are to be found in dry barns and will enter beehives on their own if those are not treated and not kept hygienic. The adult scorpions are not killed by OA but by FA, the young are killed by OA too because they feed from microorganisms which are not present if you treat with OA. All new research here.

    And I agree the scorpion is not the golden nugget. Donīt forget the genetics of the surviving bee stock.

    I had seen a scorpion running on my hive 2014 and I found a nest in an old metal bin filled with bark I use in my garden to propagate small insects.

    But the nymphs need a long time to become adults, 2 years as I remember and to keep the scorpions satisfied you need nesting places inside the hive. So the propagating of microorganisms and helpful insects is for people only who really care for hive configurations following nature. In former times the scorpions lived in the straw and clay skeps which provided good nesting places.

    Fact is: the mites will not go away and when a new pest comes the bees still are not resistant to an old one.
    Fact is: there are commercial beekeepers working tf and sucessful
    Fact is: there is the soft bond approach which makes tf beekeeping a future possibility and avoids too many losses but treaters and treatment free beeks both fear the work of monitoring.

    And fact is: the honey taken from treatment free bees is the sweetest of all, the honey taken from varroa deadouts is the most bitter.

    Yes the rearing of them in sufficient numbers becomes a whole other study. I wonder how the special places in the hive for the scorpions will work in with small hive beetle control?

    Were you not once very enamored with the ultrasonic mite killer?

    I see things stated here as fact that would have a hard time standing up to any degree of scrutiny!
    Frank

  10. #49

    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    Quote Originally Posted by crofter View Post
    Yes the rearing of them in sufficient numbers becomes a whole other study. I wonder how the special places in the hive for the scorpions will work in with small hive beetle control?

    Were you not once very enamored with the ultrasonic mite killer?

    I see things stated here as fact that would have a hard time standing up to any degree of scrutiny!
    >>> the special places must be controlled by the bees. They are good hiding places for the SHB I fear. The scorpion eats wax moth larva and hive beetles too as Iīm told. We have no experience with hive beetles and thatīs one of my goals too to propagate mite biting because I believe it will help with the beetle. Propolis collecting traits might be of help too when bees start to cover parasites.

    >>> I was not enarmored with the ultrasonic unit, I was ( and I am still) interested in non chemical treatments. Our bees are not mite resistant yet and need some years to be regressed.
    The unit works somehow but is not practical. It must be used all the time and you canīt leave on the honey boxes while treating. Otherwise it would have been a fine IPM method.
    But nobody tested on the beneficial organisms which might be disturbed and killed by the unit.

    This fall I treated one colony with thymol. I will not do it again, itīs just something which I donīt feel comfortable with. I saw the bees desperately trying to propolise the pads which means they want to get rid of them.
    To me brood culling is a better way. Sugar shakes too but it was too late in year to do that. I still have to improve many managements and learn much more.

    >>>coming to things stated here: I see that you follow some of my doings, thank you for the attention. I see many trying or being interested in tf beekeeping or they would not tell of their failures. Why did they try if they believe it an absurdity and not an attraction? Every beekeeper has a location where he might make some experimental tries to propagate more resistant genetics without jeopardizing income if he lives of the bees.

    I love to watch the videos of Sam Comfort or other tf beekeepers. They are so much more relaxed and happy. My co-workers who still treat tell me all the time they want to keep bees like they did before varroa was set free. I donīt know about that time but it seems to me they were very content with beekeeping then, as they are not with today`s constant struggle against mite infestations.
    Last edited by 1102009; 10-22-2018 at 11:28 PM.

  11. #50
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    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    Sibylle, will it help that I don’t clean off bottom boards. Can these beneficent guardian predators live in a Langstroth if they are not molested?
    David. Cheerful beekeeping

  12. #51
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    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    I don't see a lot of them, but I see them from time to time. I saw a pseudo scorpion in a hive again a week ago.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 42y 40h 39yTF

  13. #52

    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    Quote Originally Posted by Riverderwent View Post
    Sibylle, will it help that I don’t clean off bottom boards. Can these beneficent guardian predators live in a Langstroth if they are not molested?
    https://beenature-project.com/epages...re-project.com

    They need rough interior walls and follower boards filled with dry wood/bark chips
    They can not live in Styrofoam, as they are guided by electrostatics
    They have to be able to move from the walls to the honeycomb
    You need a climate ventilation lid otherwise the hive interior is too wet
    You must not toss the honeycombs
    The bottom boards are too wet and cold

    Be welcome to pm me for more information.
    Last edited by 1102009; 10-23-2018 at 10:49 AM. Reason: corrected

  14. #53

    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    I don't see a lot of them, but I see them from time to time. I saw a pseudo scorpion in a hive again a week ago.
    Here a picture of the one I saw on my hive wall, sorry, I was kind of shaking with excitement....while taking it.

    Pseudoskorpion.jpg

  15. #54
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    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    Thank you, Sibylle.
    David. Cheerful beekeeping

  16. #55
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    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    Here is a wall design I am testing - I mean it to be full of ants, scorpions, fungus, mold, whatever.
    Moth? Fine, whatever.

    Idea is not mine; there is a good blog from Denmark, I believe, where I got the idea.
    1/2 mesh and packed wood shavings.
    The wall is passable by the bees.
    The bees can crawl inside as well.
    Up to them to do whatever the heck they want with these walls.
    May propolise it if they want.

    20180924_111209.jpg
    20180924_120233.jpg
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame/chemical-free experimentations.

  17. #56

    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    We avoid metal as much as possible in the hives.

  18. #57

    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    Iīm thinking about using thin mats of hemp or straw to glue to the interiour wall sides and cover this with clay but not completely so to have nesting places for useful insects, but one has to be aware of the SHB when it appears.
    The bees need to have access to all parts of the hive and easy access it must be. They must be able to propolise whole areas if they want to and the metal mesh walls are not easy to control for them.
    They are good against wetness though.

  19. #58
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    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    Here is the original source: https://chelifer.de/tree-hive/
    He is using metal mesh and so far no comments that I could find (bad or good).
    I am just testing the idea and we'll see.
    Applied melted old wax to the mesh walls as a sort of cement to hold the shavings inside.
    Just some, not too much.
    In round one of this testing the bees were trying to pull the smaller shavings and toss them out - hence some "cement" added.
    Former "smoker boy". Classic, square 12 frame Dadants >> Long hive/Short frame/chemical-free experimentations.

  20. #59
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    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    I saw a couple in my hives this weekend and I see them fairly regularly. Not in any large numbers. Just scurrying across an inner cover or frame top bar.

  21. #60
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    Default Re: Do I really need to medicate?

    [QUOTE=GregV;1676157]Here is a wall design I am testing - I mean it to be full of ants, scorpions, fungus, mold, whatever.
    Moth? Fine, whatever.

    I would be interested to see how that would work if at all here. We have such a long summer and significant amounts of propolis I doubt it would stay open for a season. I also am not sure how these mite eating bugs are going to be able to do anything when my hives are literally killing lizards, mice, wasp, and carpenter bees left and right.
    Splitting a first year hive successfully https://youtu.be/ZfRTreQ-S9c

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