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Tim B, I have heard other beekeepers speak of persisting EFB but have never had anything like it. I had one friend, whose opinion I trust, say that eventually she shook out all her bees in an effected yard, removed and burned their comb and gave them all new foundation....and the problem finally disappeared. It made me wonder if it was actually EFB or some other exotic brood disease. Might be worth sending a sample to Beltsville.
Again, I've never had a hive or yard that needed treating again after the first round. And the comb from those hives surely made its way throughout my hives as a normal part of business. And I haven't had a case of EFB in a number of years. Clearly, I never moved frames from a hive actively showing symptoms.
Yes Margot1d, EFB can spread in a yard. Drifting bees mainly, I suspect. The bacteria is carried within the bees. I've seen it show up in a hive and before I could treat, the adjacent hives were showing sypmptoms.
 

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What I am dealing with definitely responds to oxytetracycline (so it isn't a virus) and definitely isn't afb. It is indiscriminate among various queen lineages. Apparently the uk has the same problems because they recommend burning efb hives. Without doing preventative treatments in the late winter it will affect about 20% of my hives. I'll be more religious about preventive treatments and will see from there. My opinion is that this is a significant cause of late summer hive collapse that often remains unidentified. Retrospectively I began to see that in my fourth or fifth year of beekeeping and always attributed the problem to mites. (I believe that there is at least anecdotal evidence that efb and parasitic mite syndrome are probably connected) Many times the only symptom is a very spotty brood pattern as the bees are adept at cleaning out dying larva so you never see a lot of brood meltdown in the summer that you sometimes see in the spring. If it is not addressed a generation of bees are lost and the hive dwindles rapidly.

It appears that I have been able to turn around the typical 20% of hives dwindle and/or die in the late summer to nearly zero dwindling by treating mites earlier, dusting tm for 4 weeks in July and feeding light hives. I have one nuc (out of 90 nucs, singles and doubles) that had shown efb in early June that had a recurrence which if not identified would have collapsed within another brood cycle. I also have two other hives that had symptoms after the spring flow that showed a minor recurrence. Other infected hives have shown no symptoms. No other hives are dwindling as I have seen at least some every year for the past fifteen years.
 

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Retrospectively I began to see that in my fourth or fifth year of beekeeping and always attributed the problem to mites. (I believe that there is at least anecdotal evidence that efb and parasitic mite syndrome are probably connected)
Absolutely! So many beekeepers look at each set of symptoms individually as though they have no influence over each other. Which, in turn, often blinds them to some of the underlying causes and those consequently never get resolved.
 

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Is it the white twisted larvae (like a copperhead snake ready to strike) that make you think that this is EFB? That is what I see in your picture. Is this what you are referring to?
P.S. Sorry about the post. It is just that I saw the same thing in one of my hives. It makes me think it may be Efb with my hive. The fifty dead bees in front of the hive was what alarmed me-plus the fact that the bees were foragers.
 

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I know this conversation is old, but I've had EFB on my mind lately after hearing some horror stories.

I found this study from 1983 about EFB and nutrition. Colonies that pollinate blueberries apparently have a really high percentage of EFB compared to other colonies. The researcher found that blueberry pollen is almost ph neutral compared to many other pollens, which tend to be acidic. I quote from the abstract: "Control of EFB was attained by the feeding of low-pH (4.4) lactic acid-acidified soy-supplement diet during blueberry pollination." Notice, he didn't control the disease with a natural diet, but just with artificial pollen with a low ph. Isn't that interesting? If I ever have a major EFB problem like msl, I think I'll start by putting lemon juice in my pollen patties and go from there.
 

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Sean:
There has been a lot of research about blueberry pollination and bees recently. Meghan Millbrath of Michigan State University has been working with this issue which is very specific to blueberry pollination. The phenomenon they are seeing is not definitively diagnosed solely as EFB. They seem to be calling it "Snot Brood" unofficially until they can get a better handle on exactly what is taking place. I say all of this only because the information contained in your 1983 study has likely been supplemented by this newer research.

I have had only one instance of EFB in one hive. I found it in early spring. I took the hive out of production, fed it even though we were in a flow, and it cleared up. Don't know if I got lucky or if plentiful resources corrected it.
 
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