Need a Diagnosis
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Covington County, Alabama, USA
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    1,541

    Default Need a Diagnosis

    Inspected all of my hives yesterday. Found one hive that looked great, but had three frames of brood that had dead pupae still in cells that looked shriveled. Mind immediately went to EFB. Neighboring frames within the hive have good patterns with healthy-looking capped and uncapped brood. When I turned the affected frames on their sides, a dozen or so dry and shriveled pupae fell out of the frames. They also "rattled" (similar to chalkbrood) when you shook the frame a little. The pupae were very dry and easily removed, but did not have the mummified look of chalk brood. Population is great. Queen is still laying eggs. Scheduled to pull my Apivar out of the hive next weekend.

    We are in a hellish drought with temps remaining in the upper 90's, which is unseasonably warm for even this place (South Alabama). Don't know if that could have anything to do with it.

    Any ideas?

    092919C4-1.jpg092919C4-2.jpg092919C4-3.jpg092919C4-4.jpg

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
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    8,127

    Default Re: Need a Diagnosis

    Have they got anything to eat?

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    Default Re: Need a Diagnosis

    My guess also, some bees will suck the larvae dry when they are starving.

    Not going with mites based on the pics anyway, because would expect to see some more mature dead larvae plus younger dead ones. Looks like the bees have already consumed the pre pupal larvae. It's not chalk brood either.

    Without seeing more of the hive, starvation is my best guess.
    "Every viewpoint, is a view from a point." - Solomon Parker

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Covington County, Alabama, USA
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    Default Re: Need a Diagnosis

    I have a Medium super full of capped frames above it. But I agree with you both, that is exactly what it looks like.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    10,131

    Default Re: Need a Diagnosis

    Were the dead brood under a mite strip?
    "Every viewpoint, is a view from a point." - Solomon Parker

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Covington County, Alabama, USA
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    Default Re: Need a Diagnosis

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    Were the dead brood under a mite strip?
    I found this on three frames together on one side of the bottom brood box. There was an Apivar strip on that side somewhere (not sure where). There is a large pond about 1/2 mile away and I am not aware of other water sources closer. Again, we are in a drought. No rain to speak of for well over a month. Temps have been 95F plus since May.
    Could I be looking at water deprivation?

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    kincaid,il.
    Posts
    20

    Default Re: Need a Diagnosis

    I had the same thing on 3 hives mite count was over 10

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Mtn. View, Arkansas, USA
    Posts
    2,751

    Default Re: Need a Diagnosis

    To me, the photos look like PMS, DWV killed larvae and pupa being removed by workers. I wonder what the varroa count was before the mite treatment was started.
    42 + years - 24 colonies - IPM disciple - Naturally Skeptic

  10. #9

    Default Re: Need a Diagnosis

    Did they get anything to eat?

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    8,127

    Default Re: Need a Diagnosis

    Quote Originally Posted by AR Beekeeper View Post
    To me, the photos look like PMS, DWV killed larvae and pupa being removed by workers. I wonder what the varroa count was before the mite treatment was started.
    Me too

  12. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Covington County, Alabama, USA
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    Default Re: Need a Diagnosis

    Quote Originally Posted by AR Beekeeper View Post
    To me, the photos look like PMS, DWV killed larvae and pupa being removed by workers. I wonder what the varroa count was before the mite treatment was started.
    Could be. I don't do a pre-treatment mite wash after my supers come off. I know I have mites by the end of July that exceed the threshold. So I could have had a good viral load going by the end of July. I have had mite loss hives before, and some of the frames are indeed similar.

    The differences I am finding with this hive is that (1) population is booming and looking great; (2) multiple brood frames that are completely unaffected with good-looking brood in all stages of development; (3) not the typical perforated cappings look. Yes, some have been uncapped or not fully capped, but no pin holes or typical PMS cappings; (4) No dead emerging bees with their tongues out. In fact, I sat and watched bees emerge that looked like normal emerging bees.

    If PMS, I suspect that my mites have been killed off from the Apivar (though I will confirm with a mite wash this weekend). However, the viral load may remain and that is what I am now seeing.

    This hive was a fly-back split (2018 queen) which I made broodless in March and treated with OAV when broodless.

  13. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Covington County, Alabama, USA
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    Default Re: Need a Diagnosis

    Thanks for the responses. Hive continues to thrive despite these three frames. Frames seem to be clearing up and bees clearing out the "affected" cells, but it is still evident that there was a problem. I might have had a little PMS that the Apivar strips eventually took care of. I also had about 6 or 7 active brood frames going during a late season drought. I wonder if maybe the queen got out a little ahead of the hive and they could not support all of the brood with the lack of water. I will continue to monitor. Thanks again.

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