By: Dawn CoganScience-Based Art of Alaska, LLC&UndesirableHiveProblems
NosemaA spore-forming parasiticprotozoan that chieflyaffects insects.
Nosema arises mostly in the spring after periods ofbad weather, although it may also be a winter diseasethat is only noticed in the spring when beekeepersfirst inspect their hives. The female worker bees aremost strongly afflicted, less so the drones. The queenbee is rarely infected since afflicted bees rarelyparticipate in feeding the queen. The most notablesymptom is dysentery. This appears as yellow stripeson the outside of the hive and in severe cases, insidethe hive. Bees may be unable to fly ("crawling") dueto disjointed wings. If the queen is infected, herovaries degenerate and ovum production drops dueto atrophy of the ova, after which she is likely to besuperseded.
Fumagilin®-BNow more than ever it is important totreat for Nosema. Fumagilinsup>®-B fedin sugar syrup both spring and fall willhelp keep your spore counts low.Easy to Mix.Dissolves without heating and mixesdirectly into syrup.NosemaPrevention:
VarroaMitesA reddish-brown, oval mite(Varroa jacobsoni) that is aparasite of honeybees.They are about the size of apeppercorn.
VarroaMite DetectionSticky BoardThis sticky board can be used with orwithout the screen to monitor or diagnosea varroa infestation. If placed directly onthe bottom board, the screen will beneeded to keep the bees from the adhesive.When used in conjunction with a screenedbottom board, the replacement stickyboard can be used alone. The sticky boardis conveniently printed with the grid linesto aid in determining the number of mitespresent.
Varroa Mite Detection:Paula Macedo, a U of Nebraska Graduate Student, found a new way tocheck colonies for Varroa mites that is more efficient than ether roll,and NOT necessary to kill bees to conduct the test.MATERIALS:A wide mouth canning jar (quart or pint) with a two piece lid.#8 mesh hardware cloth (or any mesh that will retain bees, but passvarroa)Window Screen (or any fine mesh that will retain Varroa, but passpowdered sugar)Retain the metal ring of the two piece lid and discard the centerportion.Cut a circle of #8 mesh hardware cloth to fit the inside of the ring.Collect 200-300 bees in the jar. Add powdered sugar (enough to coatthe bees, about 1 tsp. to 1 tbsp.) through the #8 mesh hardware clothlid.
Roll the jar around to distribute the sugar. Allow the jar to sit for a few minutesThen invert the jar over a piece of paper and shake to recover the mites. The beeswill remain in the jar, but the mites and sugar will pass through the #8 mesh to thepaper.The sugar will make it difficult to count the mites. Hence, pour the sugar and mitesinto another jar with a fine mesh. lid. Shake again and allow the sugar to escapethrough the mesh. A brief shaking will usually recover about 70% of the mites, butlonger shaking will produce about 90% recovery. Dump the mites on a clean sheetof paper and count them.3 possible reasons for the efficacy of this technique:1) Varroa mite legs have a sticky pad called the empodium that helps them adhereto their host bee. The presence of powdered sugar could make it difficult for mitesto adhere to their host bee.2) Powdered sugar stimulates the bees natural grooming behavior.3) The powdered sugar on the mites body stimulates mites to release from feedingon the host bee to groom themselves.Varroa Mite Detection Continued:
Natural or "essential" oils produced by plants assist inrepelling predatory insects or to render the plant in some waytoxic to the insect if ingested. Essential oils have been shownto have antimicrobial, antifungal, insecticidal and miticidaleffects on various pathogens and pests under both laboratoryand field conditions.Essential oils have been used for treating honey beeafflictions, including infestations of parasitic mites (varroaand Acarine (tracheal) mites). Laboratory and field tests haveshown that they are between 50% and 95% effective in thisrole.Mite Prevention& Treatment
Organic Method ofRemoving VarroaMites:Pierco Green Drone Comb
MiteZapper® - Chemical Free Varroa Mite Control - Without OpeningYour ColonyResembling a heating element, the MiteZapper® is a hive frame that isbuilt as a Drone Foundation. Varroa mites are 10 - 12 times more likelyto prefer drone cells. Install the MiteZapper® into the super as easily as aregular frame. After the bees seal the brood, the beekeeper connectsthe frame to the control box, which is then connected to a 12 voltvehicle battery (not included) for about 8 minutes. The electricityproduces enough heat to kill both the pupae and the mites. The beesthen remove the dead brood/mites within 24 - 36 hours. Treatment isperformed approximately 5 times per year.Chemical Free Mite Control:
APIVAR DRAMATICALLY CUTS MITE POPULATIONA study conducted by the research arm of the USDAin the spring of 2012 shows that Apivar® wasresponsible for a 52-fold drop in mite populationcompared to an untreated hive. This demonstratesthe effectiveness of Apivar’s® controlled-releasetechnology.APIVAR STRIPS SAVE TIME AND EFFORTApivar® is packaged in vacuum-sealed foil pouchestha each contain 10 strips. A single application of twostrips per brood chamber is sufficient to treat a hive,so you spend less time and effort treating your bees,and there is less disruption of the bees than withmany other treatments.Apivar® has been approved under Section 18 emergency use exemptions in select states. Apivar® does nothave Section 18 approval in all states. Prior to using this product, contact your local Department ofAgriculture or Mann Lake at 800-880-7694 to determine the status of Section 18 authorization in your state.Treating Mites withChemicals from Mann Lake
Mite Away II ™ Quick-Strip (MAQS™)The Quick Strips have a treatment period of just 7days. Daytime temperatures must be between 50 -92ºF. Strips are laid across the tops of the broodframes and they can be used during a honey flow ifnecessary. A spacer rim is no longer needed for thesestrips but you still need to wear the recommendedsafety equipment for acid. Now available in all states!Update! Formic acid, the pesticide in Mite Awaystrips, has been approved for varroa and trachealmite control in organic honey production. Read thedetails of the new ruling athttp://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=AMS-NOP-11-0058-0027
Api Life Var® Thymol StripsAn alternative product for Varroa treatment.Up to 95% efficacy, most effective when thetemperature range is 65º- 95ºF (18º - 35ºC).Three applications are necessary at 7-10 dayintervals. When treating using 3 wafers percolony, the 10 pack will treat approximately6 colonies and the 100 pack will treatapproximately 66 colonies. Not available forsale in HI or CA.
Caution:They do cause contamination of wax and honey,but the levels are minimal. Three delivery methods are used in bee hives... Slow fumigation, fastfumigation and admixture with sugar syrup feed, which has both a direct ingestion componentand a certain amount of slow fumigation.The terms slow and fast are used here to indicate the differencebetween passive fumigation by a bottle with a wick (or a felt pad in a honey jar lid) and theburning of pungent leaves in a smoker or delivering an aerosol of the oil compound.Historically Oil of wintergreen (methyl salicylate) has been usedagainst acarine mites for a century or more. Although thyme oil and eucalyptus oil have also beenused. Menthol crystals at a rate of 50g per hive are most favored in USA. There is a newlyformulated micro encapsulated version of menthol which is now being added to honey bee feed.This material has shown promising results so far.The commonly used essential oils for varroa control, arethymol, eucalyptus, and wintergreen. These oils can be applied singly or in concert. Whenapplied as fumigants, the effectiveness of thymol and other essential oils against varroa mitesdepends greatly on temperature, time of the year and colony strength. Due to the inconsistencyand unreliability of essential oils for mite control, they cannot be used alone. However, their usedoes fit well into Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programs for alternating use with othercontrol measures.
Mann Lake Medication Kit:1 ten pack Check Mite+ Strips (V. Mites)1 ten pack MiteAThol Menthol (TrachealMites)1 Terra Patties Mix (10) (Foulbrood)Price: $55.00
HONEY-B-HEALTHYA honeybee feeding stimulantcomposed of lemongrass andspearmint oil concentrate.HONEY-B-HEALTHY helpspromote healthy vigoroushives when used as a feedingstimulant.Developed in 1995 by acommercial beekeeperRich in essential oils!Dadant & Sons
Essential OilsFrom Mann Lake· feeding stimulant composed oflemongrass and spearmint (essential oilsconcentrate)· helps promote healthy, vigorous hives ·when used as a feeding stimulant duringlate winter, early spring and duringdearths of nectar· natural calming effect when sprayed onthe bees· antibacterial, antifungal andantimicrobial which aids in the overallhealth of the bees· helps build up packages, nucs andswarms· prevents syrup fermentationwhen used as a spray, stimulates bees todraw out new foundation faster
Chalk BroodThe most common brood disease found in most areas.Caused by a fungus (Ascosphaera apis).Found in colonies which are stressed by:· humid weather· low colony population· American foulbrood· mite infestation· poor nutrition· poor hive management· weather extremes (cold clustering and heat fanning)· unattended brood & insufficient nurse bee #’s
Most often the first larvae affected are those thatmay be unattended regularly around the edges ofthe brood where the brood temperature may notbe consistent.CHALK BROOD TREATMENT:There are no medicationsBest organic treatment is to eliminate stress factors.Get bee population up in the spring and keep it up!!Cleaning behavior of the workers maybe only second orthird to good ventilation and hive population, to resistchalkbrood.http://www.beecoolventilators.com/chalkbrood.php
Chalk Brood Infestation
Small Hive Beetles
8+Use this trap any time beetles are present.However since Small Hive Beetles (S.H.B.)are temperature sensitive it will be far moreeffective during late spring to fall when beetlesare out of the cluster and most active. Includedwith your West Beetle Trap are woodenspacers needed to modify your bottom board,to allow the honey bees to enter and exit thehive while the West Beetle Trap is in placeHive Beetle Aid:
Mini Beetle BlasterMini-Mating Nucs are primetargets for the hive beetle. Fillthe Mini Beetle Blaster with oiland the beetles wont be able toget out of the trap.
Para-Moth® Wax Moth ControlPara-Moth® is used to control wax moths instored supers. Place 3 oz. (85.04g or 6tablespoons) on a paper plate and place on topbars of uppermost super. Stack 5 deep supersor 9 shallow supers and cover with a tarp.Equipment should be aired for several daysbefore use.Do not use in the hive or with cutcomb honey or unextracted combs of honey.Wax MothControl:
Wax MothsVery destructive insect pest in the beehiveAdult is heavy-bodied, small moth about ½”to ¾” long, wings vary in color from grayishto brown and the underside is light gray. Themated females will fly into a colony 1 to 3hours after dark and lay their eggs and thenleave before daylight. The eggs are laid inmasses and are light in color.
A fat larvae worm will be visible.Larvae is pointed at both ends with a brownhead and can get up to 1" in length Willstay in the larvae state from 18 days to 3mos. Prefer darker comb and will chew outoval depressions throughout your hive Willdestroy the comb and woodenware. Waxmoths begin spinning a cocoon that cancover your frames .Wax Moths Continued;
Treating Wax MothsThere are no chemicals approved to killthese wax worms while in your hive. Theonly sure way to keep this from becoming aproblem in your hive is to keep your beesstrong and healthy so they can managethem successfully on their own.
Several options; remove the infectedsuper and add it to a very strongcolony that will clean it up, place thecomb inside a plastic bag and place in afreezer for 2 days, or some in the deepsouth, will place the infested combsover a fire ant nest for a day or so toclean up.Wax Moth Problems:
If you make cut comb honey it is necessaryto freeze your comb for at least 2 days, thiswill kill the eggs and prevent them fromhatching inside the packaging.Extracting supers can be treated withParadichlorobenzene (PDB). Simply stackthe extracted dry supers about 5 high (hivebodies) or 10 high (supers) and place 6 oz.of the crystals on top of a square ofnewspaper in the top super. It is necessaryto make sure that all cracks are taped shut;
you are basically making a fumigationchamber. Check stacked supers every 6 wksin warm climates as moths may get backinto the stacked supers and lay more eggswhen the PDB has vaporized. Make surethat the supers are aired out for several daysbefore placing back on the hive. Use onlythe PDB, DO NOT use commerciallyavailable moth balls; it has other chemicalsthat are unsafe for bees and humans.
Erratic or uneven brood pattern · Twisted larvaew/ creamy-white guts visible through the bodywall; melted down, yellowy-white larvae ·Unpleasant, sour odor · Loosely-attached brownscalesUnlike AFB, the remains of larvae that die fromEFB do not rope when drawn out with amatchstick.European Foul Brood
IdentifyingAmerican Foul Brood
American Foulbrood (AFB)* most fatal of honeybee brood diseases• Spores germinate in the gut of the larva and thevegetative form of the bacteria begins to grow.• A good field test is to touch dead larva with atoothpick or twig. It will be sticky and "ropey"• Has a characteristic odor, - experienced beekeeperswith a good sense of smell can often detect thedisease upon opening a hive. The most reliabledisease diagnosis is done by sending in somepossibly affected brood comb to a laboratoryspecialized in identifying honey bee diseases.
American Foul Broodspores are extremely resistant todesiccation and can remain viable for morethan 40 years in honey and beekeepingequipment. Therefore, honey from anunknown source should never be used asbee feed, and used beekeeping equipmentshould be assumed contaminated unlessknown to be otherwise.
When cleaning infected cells, beesdistribute spores throughout the entirecolony. Disease spreads rapidly throughoutthe hive as the bees, attempting to removethe spore-laden dead larvae, contaminatebrood food. Nectar stored in contaminatedcells will contain spores and soon the broodchamber becomes filled with contaminatedhoney..American Foul Brood
As this honey is moved up into the supers,the entire hive becomes contaminated withspores. When the colony becomes weakfrom AFB infection, robber bees may enterand take contaminated honey back to theirhives thereby spreading the disease to othercolonies and apiaries. Beekeepers also mayspread disease by moving equipment(frames or supers) from contaminated hivesto healthy ones.American Foul Brood
The only way to get rid ofAmerican Foul Brood is toburn all your equipment!
All-inclusive liquid protein with 20 aminoacids vital for bee health. Protein Benefits:Stimulates brood rearing when there is nonatural pollen or nectar, Simulates a nectarflow and pollen bloom when using 1:1sugar syrup with Honey-B-Healthy plusprotein, Provides all vital amino acids plus9 more, reinforces worn-out, stored pollenfor late winter brood rearing. When fed insugar water with Honey-B-Healthystimulates rapid build-up of nucs, swarms,package bees and weak colonies. It can beused to help produce high quality queensby providing protein for royal jelly.