Presentation on theme: "Bee Hive Manipulation and Maintenance Throughout the Year - Louisiana"— Presentation transcript:
1Bee Hive Manipulation and Maintenance Throughout the Year - Louisiana Hive MaintenanceandUpkeep
2Agenda I. Seasonal Maintenance II. Maintaining healthy hives/apiary III. What to look for regarding hive problemsand pests/diseasesIV. Additional diseases and complicationsV. Differences between commercial and hobbybeekeepersApproaches to beekeepingReasons for differencesVI. References
3I. Seasonal Maintenance Fall – September into OctoberLate Fall/Winter - October through FebruarySpring March through AprilSummer May to/& incl. September
4Fall Months – September through October Slide 1 of 2 Maintain weekly checkingHarvest honey (mid-September for CENLA)Identify weak colonies: combine/ destroy/decide which to do based upon hive conditionInventorying equipment: plan for rebuilding and/or replacementContinue treatment of vegetation within bee yardsRotate brood boxes
5Fall Months – September through October Slide 2 of 2 Add supers as neededPrepare hives for winter months:Maintain sufficient honey stores in hiveApply pesticides as neededDisease Prevention/Treatment(ex. Foulbrood & Nosemia)Treat for varroa; tracheal mites(ex Apistan / Cumaphos; (Mite-a-thol); Apivar ®(Amitraz)? - follow labelsReduce entrances
6Winter Months – October through February Check hives (at least once a month) and check for:Strength (health and vigor)Honey reservesYard maintenanceRepair and/or replace equipment
7Spring Months – March through April Slide 1 of 2 Begin weekly maintenanceCheck colony strength and honey storesInitiate feeding to build up hive strength (ex. BeePro patties)Treat for varroa and tracheal mites if neededDisease Prevention if neededRotate deep boxes and remove entrance reducerTreat vegetation in yardsRepair and/or replace equipment if you haven’t done so already
8Spring Months – March through April Slide 2 of 2 Make colony increases (splits); capture swarmsContinue feeding until honey flow is onAll equipment should have been repaired/replaced but if not, do so nowCheck Queens: commercial beekeepers often replace her every year; hobbyist may choose to keep her (Note: a young queen is a better producer) – plan on replacing Queen before the honey flow in your area beginsProvide additional supers as needed
9Summer Months – May through August/September Maintain weekly checkingTreat vegetation within bee yardsAdd supers as needed (When 7 out of 10 frames are full, add a super)Harvest honey (June and September for CENLA)
10II. Maintaining a Healthy Hive/Apiary Placement: Location, location, location!Manage vegetation around hivesMaintain hive bodies and framesMaintain healthy beesPractice IPMRemember: an ounceof maintenance isworth a pound oflive bees.
11Maintaining a Healthy Hive/Apiary (continued) Location, Location, Location:Best: morning sun – mid-day shade - afternoon sun; Worst: full shade or sunAvoid flood zonesInaccessibility in inclemental conditionsAreas prone to pesticide sprayingHighly visible to public or in close proximity to public/neighbor (esp. if they don’t want them there)Close to clean water and year-round food
12Maintaining a Healthy Hive/Apiary (continued) Manage vegetation around hivesSpay, mow, but do something to keep the vegetation under control
13Maintaining a Healthy Hive/Apiary (continued) Maintain hive bodies and frames:New hives should be dipped/painted inside and out – Note: some bee keepers choose to not paint insideEverything wears out – decide when to repair or toss
14Maintaining a Healthy Hive/Apiary (continued) Maintain healthy beesFor best brood production, requeen yearlyTreat for varroa mites (spring and fall)Treat for all other pests as needed (small hive beetles, nosemia, tracheal mites, American foulbrood, European foulbrood, chalk brood, wax moths, etc.)
15III. What to look for – Hive Problems/Pests/Diseases Queenless hivesPresence of only drone brood and/or multiple eggs laid within individual cells
16What to look for – Hive Problems/Pests/Diseases (continued) Queenless ConditionLaying worker bees, in absence of queen begin laying eggs – problem: infertile bee laying eggs with haploid DNA produces dronesUnless treated, hive will dieRemedies:Introduce new queenCombine hive with queen-right hiveDestroy (due to additional problems seen)
17RequeeningOptions:Purchase mated queens with known genetics/breeding stock from reputable dealerRaise your ownAllow hive to requeen itself through supercedure (look for swarming queen cells)If old queen isn’t producing she can be killed and replaced.
18Indications of poor queen Patchy brood pattern on combs
19Requeen or “do something” when you see the following: You can requeen or let the bees do it for you – sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’tRequeen or “do something” when you see the following:
20Maintaining a Healthy Hive/Apiary Wax Moths (Lesser and Greater) (Lesser: Achroid grisella;Greater: Galleria mellonella L. )HEALTHY HIVES WILL KEEP WAX MOTHS AT BAY!Declining/stressed hives are prone to wax moths infestationHive might abscond if not die out altogetherCan degrade woodwork of hive and framesNote: some people raise them for bait and food!
21Maintaining a Healthy Apiary Wax Moths (continued) PreventionProper storage of hives and framesWhen building hives, provide for bee space (so bees can reach and remove wax moth eggs and larva)Storage: fumigation should be considered whenever wax moths are present.MisconceptionsWM’s do not kill honeybeesCannot infest a healthy hive (more often than not, these hives have problems preceding the WM infestation)Will not infest frames stored inside
22Maintaining a Healthy Apiary Wax Moths (continued)
23Maintaining a Healthy Apiary Small hive beetles (SHB) (Aethina tumida ) Exotics from S.Africa into U.S. in 1990’sFeed on multiple nectar and pollen sourcesIn the hive they feed on brood, pollen, honey and defecateThe bees may abscond or succumb but in either case, the hive is lost
24Maintaining a Healthy Apiary (SHB - continued) They are omnipresent in LouisianaEven healthy hives can succumb to unchecked/managed beetle problemsAnswer: manage the beetle populations in your hives/apiary!
25Maintaining a Healthy Apiary SHB Management options IPM: predatory soil nematodes*, hygienic queens that kill/remove SHB, non-pesticidal trapsSoil nematodes infect the pupa with bacteria, which eats the tissue and causes septicemia in the SHB. The beetle dies, and the nematodes live inside the decaying carcass.Traps, baiting, poisons, etc.West Traps: black plastic trays with powdered lime or vegetable oil placed on bottom board.Better Beetle Blaster with apple cider vinegarBeetle Barn traps (GeorgiasBees.com) baited with attractant (CombatR (a.i.=FipronilR)), CriscoR with boric acid, etc.
26Maintaining a Healthy Apiary SHB (continued) Management options (continued)Baited jars located outside the hives – apple cider vinegar; Crisco, etc.SHB traps from cut up (3’x5”) advertising signs (Boric acid & Crisco) – FatBeeMan videos on YouTube.comRoach traps placed around base and below hivesGuard Star drenching on ground around hivesPhysically smashing the little buggers when seenPraying, Crying, Cursing, etc.PrayingForget beekeeping and herd sheep instead
27Maintaining a Healthy Apiary SHB (continued) Pictorial of various SHB control techniques:
28Maintaining a Healthy Apiary SHB (continued) Pictorial of various SHB control techniques:
29Tracheal mites (Acarapis woodi ) Slide 1 of 2 Mated females migrate from old bees to young bees; reproductive phase occurs inside the tracheaColonies in the sun tend to have lower levelsColony Symptoms: Bee population dwindles in fall and winter months resulting in colony death; heavily infested colonies do not build up in spring and usually don’t make a honey crop
30Tracheal mites (Acarapis woodi ) Slide 2 of 2 Treatment Options:Use of genetically selected mite-resistant stocks: Russians, Buckfast, ARS-Y-C1, etc.Prolonged contact with vegetable oil (extender patties); use of “essential oils”Mite-A-TholR (menthol):Treatment Time Frames: One annual treatment –late fall to early winter, November to DecemberNon-chemical Options: Use resistant stock; treat with vegetable oil extender patties; maintain young queens
31Varroa mites (Varroa jacobsoni ) Slide 1 of 2 Feed on sealed brood and adult beesMated females move from brood cells to adults, then to reproduce, move to new brood before sealing of cellsColony symptoms:Bee population declines rapidly during winter or after honey flow, during the summerTreatment Options:Use of genetically selected mite-suppressant stocks: Russians, Hygienic queens, etc.Mite fall traps (screened or sticky bottom boardsTrapping mites in drone brood (mites tend to infest drone brood 10X more than workers)
32Varroa Mites (Varroa jacobsoni) Slide 2 of 2 Treatment Options (continued):Heating of bees and brood (ex. placement of hives in sun vs. shaded conditions.Use of essential oils; plant smokes (toxic knockdown methodology)ApistanR, CheckMiteR and or Formic acid (this latter chemical is not recommended by USDA).Apivar ® (Amitraz)Treatment Times:two annual treatments – early to mid-summer, mid-June thru July & early to mid-winter, mid-January to early FebruaryNon-chemical Option:Heat treatment and use of drone-brood frames/removal and reentry.
33American foulbrood (Paenibacillus sp. ) Slide 1 of 3 Spore-forming bacteria; spores accumulate in the comb;SymptomsCapping of diseased cell becomes moist and darkens in color.As larva shrink, the capping is drawn down into the mouth of the cell so the normal convex capping becomes concave.Death of infected larva takes place after the cell has been sealed and the cocoon has been spun.
34American foulbrood (Paenibacillus sp. ) Slide 2 of 3 Symptoms ( continued)At death, diseased larva changes from a normal pearly white color to a creamy brown, and then gradually darkens.Larval remains can be drwn out into a brown thread or rope.As larva dries, it becomes dark brown.Final state is very dark brown scale that lies uniformly on the lower side of the cell and extends from just below the mouth of the cell down to the base.
35American foulbrood (Paenibacillus sp. ) Slide 3 of 3 Treatment Options:Antibiotics prevent germination but don’t kill sporesUse of Oxytetracycline (TerramycinR) - an antibiotic used to PREVENT A.F.; [antibiotic resistant strains of A.F. exist]; do not use on a regular basisBurning of combs/scorching hive bodies is only reliable way to eliminate A.F. once it has formed in a colonyUse of hygienic queens,Eliminate old dark comb and rotate new combs into brood nestBurn infected combs and scorch interior of hives
36European foulbrood (Melissococcus pluton) fungi; infection is seasonalTreatment OptionsUse of hygienic queensChange queensClean bottom boardsEliminate old dark comb and rotate new combs into brood nestBurn infected combs and scorch interior of hivesUse of TerramycinR
37Nosema (Nosema apis) Slide 1 of 4 Protozoan; widespread; may also be responsible for some supersedure of queensSymptoms: no symptoms specifically indicative of Nosemiainability of bees to flyexcreta on combs or lighting boardsPile of dead or dying bees in front of hiveFailure of colony to build up in spring
38Nosema (Nosema apis) Slide 2 of 4 Transmission:spores enter body of adult bee through mouth and germinate in gutActive phase of organism enters digestive cells that line the mid-gut where it multipliesContents of these cells are used as food supply until cell ruptures and sheds new spores which pass down through small intestine to rectumSpores accumulate and are voided in the excreta of the beeCycle begins againSpores can remain viable for months in dried excreta
39Nosema (Nosema apis) Slide 3 of 4 Cyclic effect within hive(s):Near end of winter, combs are often soiled with excretaOther bees become infected as they clean soiled combs during spring expansion of the brood nest.Thus, disease within the colony increases rapidly for a time leading to a dwindling of the colony in the spring because of premature death of the overwintered bees.Usually, the colony survives and the proportion of infected bees begins to decline rapidly.This decline occurs because the excreta are normally voided away from the hive when regular flights become possible in the spring.
40Nosema (Nosema apis) Slide 4 of 4 Cyclic effect within hive(s) (continued):Since the old bees now die off & are replaced by healthy bees emerging from the brood combs, the disease may not be detectable in the colony by the end of the season.However, enough spores remain on the combs from the previous winter to infect a few bees in the cluster that form when winter sets in again thereby forming a nucleus for a repetition of the cycle.Treatment:FumidilR is the only chemical approved for the control of NosemaShould be used in cell builders prior and during queen rearing schedules to protect queen honey bees from the disease.
44V. Differences in Hive Mgmt. /Mtnc V. Differences in Hive Mgmt./Mtnc. between Commercial and Hobby Beekeepers Slide 1 of 2Beekeeper’s objectives and goals for beekeeping:Money (ex. Pollination vs. Honey production)EnjoymentPersonal fulfillmentJob location and/or availability (beekeeping as a 2nd job position)IncentiveTimeIgnorance – lack of knowledge
45Differences in Hive Mgmt. /Mtnc. between Commercial vs Differences in Hive Mgmt./Mtnc. between Commercial vs. Hobby Beekeepers Slide 2 of 2Commercial beekeepers often feed their bees all winter and re-queen yearly – reason: Pollination requires well-stocked hivesHobby beekeeper may or may not do thisPest & disease monitoring & treatmentsMaking colony increases/splitsElimination/replacement of weak queens/hives and replacement of damaged/contaminated equipmentKeeping informed of beekeeping knowledge, organizations, laws, regulations, etc.Staying involved with other beekeepers, beekeeping organizations and the like.Registration/Licensing of hives/yards with state
46Similarities in Hive Mgmt. between Commercial & Hobby Beekeepers Repair, maintenance & replacement of equipmentInventorying and replacement of equipmentChecking colony strength and honey storesChecking queen productivityVegetation management in bee yardsAssuring adequate space (supers) as neededManaging of weak hives: replace/combineManaging for and harvesting of honey
48Reference Sources (continued) Page 2 of 3 Documents and Fact Sheets
49Reference Sources Page 3 of 3 VideosMiscellaneousCapital Area Beekeepers Association’s “An Annual Beekeeping Task & Mgmt. Calendar”
50The EndGoodbye, au revoir, farvel, nakemin, auf wiedersehen, avrio, qualcuno, Auf wiedersehn, gudbai, do widzenia, adeus, adios, despedida, hej da, gule gule.Hit the road Jack and don’t you come back no more no more, What’d you say?, I said, Hit the road Jack and don’t you come back no more.