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Did an inspection today and I came across this one drone that looked like it may have deformed wing virus. Will you all take a look at the photo in this link and give me your opinion? As I understand it DWV is carried by mites- Is this true? I have not seen any sign of mites in any inspections this spring- have examined the bottom board and underneath the hives (screened bottom board). Assuming it is DWV is there anything that can be done? Or just assume that it won't become a big problem if the hive is strong?

Also- All the drones have hairy butts- you can see it in the photo. Didn't notice this last year- Is it normal? Do they all have hairy butts and I just didn't notice last year?

http://www.flickr.com/photos/robertsonbees/4578595949/in/photostream/

Thanks
 

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I'm not sure if you have DWV or not, but when I had it in one hive, the wings were very short and deformed. Only about 1/8 or 3/16 inch long. Looked pretty weird. Drones are big enough that it makes their wings look smaller.

It would be prudent to do a mite test to see if you have a problem. It seems mites are the carrier of this disease. I had a large mite count when I check so I treated the hives with powdered sugar dusting once a week for 6 weeks and the mite count went down and the virus went away. Hive is still healthy today, but I monitor the mite levels and dust when needed. Good luck!

BB
 

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garprob, I have to agree with BuzzyBee. Often as I'm sure you already know during inspections and removing of frames there is often drone brood that is damaged. Check the damaged brood thoroughly for varroa mites. I peformed an inspection on one of my hives and found no mites on the sample board but did find them in the drone brood.
 
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