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6061Re: [beekeeping] Deformed wings

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  • George Fergusson
    Oct 2, 2005
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      At 05:49 PM 10/2/05 -0500, you wrote:
      >Hello everyone,
      >It's me again with another one of my stupid questions.

      It's me again with another one of my stupid answers!

      > Is it normal to periodically see a certain number of sick bees driven
      from a hive ?

      No, it isn't normal.

      >Is time to go to the next step in treatment ( I was hoping to go the
      natural route, maybe not ) ? Is it too late ? What should I do next ?

      Have you done any mite counts? 24 hour natural drops? A sugar roll maybe?
      Keeping track of the change in mite loads is tedious but necessary. Also,
      go through the hive, or enough of it to check some of the brood- look for
      uncapped pupae, dead uncapped brood, etc. I'm not talking healthy curled up
      white larvae swimming in their puddle of royal jelly, I'm talking larger,
      older partially formed bees that might even have purple eyes. Dig a few out
      with your hive tool or a sharp stick and check for mites. Also be on the
      lookout for bees with deformed wings wandering around the comb. I've seen
      that in a few of my hives.

      Next, if you determine you have a mite problem, is to decide what you're
      going to do. In general I'm staying away from the patently chemical
      approaches. In particular, I'm using Oxalic Acid vapor. I hope it's
      helped.. I'll lose these hives if it doesn't I'm afraid. I've done 3
      treatments to date and have just put in my screens to do drop counts.

      >I've been out of beekeeping since the middle 70's and this is my first
      year back at it. Things were different then and I'm in the steep part of
      the learning curve trying to stay alert to the threats of the day.
      Experience is the best teacher but I also like to learn as much as possible
      from the lessons that others have learned. I will greatly appreciate all of
      your advice.

      I'll take your word for beekeeping having changed in 30 something years.
      I'm sure it has. The bees are largely the same I think, but we got mites
      now.. and many of the bee diseases aren't responding to traditional
      treatments due to years and years of the effects of the use of chemicals to
      combat them. Obviously, it isn't working.

      Good luck. Let us know what you find out.


      George & Nancy Fergusson
      Sweet Time Apiary
      326 Jefferson Road
      Whitefield Maine 04353
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