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Author Topic: chalkbrood  (Read 5750 times)
tig
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« on: December 18, 2007, 05:38:02 AM »

i have some colonies infected with chalkbrood.  i've done the double shake method on new foundations and it still comes out, although not as bad as before. the other day i received a call from the university microbiology department saying they have a possible "cure" for chalkbrood.  they want to experiment on 3 of my colonies, which i happily agreed to sacrifice since they aren't taking off like the others which aren't infected with chalkbrood.

because of the upcoming holidays the trial was postponed till after new year.  i can't wait for the trial to start and will post the results here if it works.  i know chalkbrood isn't considered a serious disease of the bees, but if a colony is severely infected, you may as well consider that colony a write off since it will take forever to reach a ten framer and honey production with be minimal if at all!
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #1 on: December 18, 2007, 07:37:46 AM »

http://www.bushfarms.com/beespests.htm#chalkbrood

I've heard of people mixing bleach and water and spraying it on the broodcombs and feeding syrup with bleach in it too.  I have not tried it and probably won't as I don't want to upset the balance of what lives in a hive.
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Michael Bush
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"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
Finsky
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« Reply #2 on: December 18, 2007, 08:08:57 AM »

i have some colonies infected with chalkbrood. 

In every research it is said that there is no chemical treatment against chalkbrood.

Best (= only) way is to change the queen.
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tig
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« Reply #3 on: December 18, 2007, 08:10:25 AM »

i'm a bit wary of using chemicals in my hives but the microbiologists assured me it was natural.  i'll learn more about it when they come over to make the trials.  maybe it's something like BT for cabbage moth control.
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Cindi
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« Reply #4 on: December 18, 2007, 09:10:23 AM »

Tig, I think that that would be an interesting thing and will be interested in hearing the results.  I have had chalkbrood a couple of times.  Changing the queen did not make one little bit of difference, by the way.  I ended up uniting this colony with another colony and things went wonderful.  I had killed both queens.  Have a great and wonderful day, Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #5 on: December 18, 2007, 10:41:31 AM »


I had bad chalkbrood 20 years. Then I decided really to do something.  Durng 4 years I when I raised new queens, I kept teh fist in contaminated nucs. All which showed tendenmcy to chalkbrood, I killed. 

One year I took queens from 2 good hives. Another's daugter showed 80% chalkbrood and another's 20%.

I casted away over 50% of my new mated queens.

Now, last year I did not found any more harmfull signs.

You may kill even 2 queens and still chalkbrood remain. But continue it.

I bought from 2 professional breeders queens and they bot showed awfull tendency.

***********

One sign of tendency is that only drone pupae have the disease. Try to eliminate those  too because they have not enough genes to resist the disease.

***************

I saw an reseach in Brasilia or in some warm country, that they had contaminated with chalkboord all hives but it did not add disease. Only those who were sick continued their disease.
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kathyp
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« Reply #6 on: December 18, 2007, 02:31:34 PM »

please keep us posted.  i had some problem with it this year also.  even changing queens did not solve it, although it seems to have gone away over the summer.  i suspect it will be back after the long, wet, winter, and i do not want to requeen again this year if i can help it.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
tig
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« Reply #7 on: December 18, 2007, 05:13:13 PM »

from what i've read up on chalkbrood, the queens can be the carrier.  when my queens all came from kona, i never had chalkbrood.  it only appeared when i got a batch of queens from australia.  interhchanging combs spread the problem thru the apiary but i did notice that combs with chalkbrood given to the kona queens didn't let those colonies have chalkbrood.  i think they have a more hygienic behavior.

requeening can help but if you use old combs that were infected with chalkbrood and the new queen doesn't have the hygenic behavior, i think it would be an exercise in futility.  i'm told that you have to be careful in cleaning out the bottom boards of mummies because if they fall to the ground, you will just be spreading the fungus.  considering this scenario, once you have chalkbrood in a location, i don't think you can make it sterile because the bees themselves will throw out the mummies from their boxes.  i was even told that foraging bees that drink from the same location can spread the problem.

frankly its a royal pain!  which is why i'm keeping my fingers crossed that what the lab has developed works!  will keep everyone updated.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #8 on: December 18, 2007, 10:10:33 PM »

I find putting the hives in full sun helpful.  I find requeening can be helpful sometimes.  You might also look at any supply of pollen you're feeding as pollen traps can get chalkbrood mummies in them.  Hygienic behavior is very helpful.
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Michael Bush
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Cindi
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« Reply #9 on: December 19, 2007, 09:11:37 AM »

I need to further elaborate on my issue with the one colony with chalkbrood last summer.

All 4 nucs and 4 package bee colonies all had Kona queens.  There was one colony that had chalkbrood and it had this extremely bad.  After some time I replaced the queen.  The chalkbrood continued.  It was near the end of the season when I finally gave this next queen the axe and united the colony.  There was no transference of disease whatsover.  The chalkbrood issue was gone and I did not see it again.  Period.  Maybe I was lucky that the chalkbrood was not brought into the united colony, but it was not.  Now, not to say that over the winter this issue may arise with the same colony again, but it is a marked colony and I will keep an eye on it.

My hives are in full sun, from sunup to about two hours before sundown.

The previous year I had queens from Australia.  Two colonies had chalkbrood badly, which resolved on its own throughout the summer.

The previous year to that I had one colony with chalkbrood, requeened with Australian queens.  Chalkbrood disappeared.  Have a wonderful and best of this day.  Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
kathyp
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« Reply #10 on: December 19, 2007, 05:08:26 PM »

cindi, did you buy a queen for your chalkbrood hive this year, or raise your own.  i let my hive requeen itself.   the queen was a great layer, but the chalkbrood continued.  i thought maybe i'd made a mistake by letting the hive make it's own queen?  as a reproducer, daughter was far superior to mom.  i hope she makes it through the winter!
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
Cindi
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« Reply #11 on: December 21, 2007, 08:30:55 AM »

Kathy, yep, I bought a queen, waste of money.  I hope that your hive does well this year coming up, good that the daughter was a better performer than her mother, yeah!!!  Beautiful day, great life. Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
mark
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« Reply #12 on: December 21, 2007, 08:56:38 PM »

i believe another factor with chalkbrood is ventilation.  too much moisture in the hive promotes chalkbrood and no matter how good or hygenic your bees are they may not be able to stay ahead of it.  make sure your hives are not located in low areas where moisture from spring rains or fog collects.  when i went to screened bottom boards the chalkbrood disappeared - better ventilation and cleanliness.
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Cindi
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« Reply #13 on: December 22, 2007, 08:12:58 AM »

Nope, I switched the colonies all to screened bottomboards last year.  The chalkbrood issue still remained with this colony.  The was the only colony out of 10 that has issues.  The hives were all situated on a grassy knoll, sitting on bricks, sun from sunup to sundown.  We live in a moist climate, yes, but this was just a non-resistant hive.  Period.  When I united it with another colony that chalkbrood disappeared and did not come back.  The hive was so weakened by the loss of so many colony members, it was not very big when I united it eventually.  I should have not been so neglectful about this chalkbrood issue.  I just got busy and figured after requeening with a new purchased queen it would clear up.  Never did.

Something I learned very recently and must be imparted.  When chalkbrood is present in a colony, never allow the bees to raise a new queen from the larva from this hive, the genes of non-resistance to chalkbrood will be with the daughters of this colony and the chalkbrood disease issues may quite probably still remain.  Breeding poor genetics.  Bring new stock into this chalkbrood colony only.

I am referring to you KathyP when I said this previous sentence.  You said that you allowed the chalkbrood colony to requeen itself.  You say that it is doing OK.  Hopefully next year the hive won't be weakened by low resistance to chalkbrood disease.  Keep a close watch on this colony, girl.  First sign of chalkbrood, "off with her head", like you said so many posts ago, and purchase a new queen, she will have offspring that should be resistant to this malade. 

Spring is coming, quickly, we will all be busy and happy looking after our girls, and having fun, fun, fun!!!!!  On to another year of bee worship and addiction!!!!  Hee, hee.  Have a wonderful and greatest of days, Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
Kirk-o
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« Reply #14 on: December 22, 2007, 11:04:40 AM »

Sometimes natue does what she wants reguardless of what we do.I had chaulk brood .I improved the ventalation put them in the sun.Got better I have no idea if this was why they improved.I think we beekeepers have a impulse to help or bees.I try to do backwards beekeeping like Charles Martin Simmon wrote Bless his soul
kirko
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"It's not about Honey it's not about Money It's about SURVIVAL" Charles Martin Simmon
mark
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« Reply #15 on: December 22, 2007, 08:05:32 PM »

 cindi    one colony does not give enough information to say nope or yes.  that colony by your own admission was too weak to bounce back and overcome the chalkbrood. that is exactly how too many haywire untried remedies get spread about to no good end.
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kathyp
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« Reply #16 on: December 22, 2007, 11:00:36 PM »

i will watch it.  all other hives did well even though i went through some queens.  this one, is the one box hive that seems to be doing ok so far this winter.  i have hopes that they will rebound in the spring.  if not, i will commence with the regicide and perhaps combine them with others.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
rdy-b
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« Reply #17 on: December 22, 2007, 11:15:05 PM »

< When I united it with another colony that chalk-brood disappeared and did not come back.  The hive was so weakened by the loss of so many >                                                                           cindi-when you united the colony-did you give them any of the honey from the brood nest of the infected colony?when i have a case of persistent chalk brood i find if i get rid of all the old honey food stores and start them with fresh sucrose or frames of honey from a healthy colony -that it will help jump start them to wellbeeing-chalkbrood is a fungus and can overwhelm a colony -even if the queen has resistance-it effects the larva so resistant bees with hygienic behavior can clean the mummies -but the larvae have no resistance -if the bees keep feeding the larvae from fungus exposed honey -they will keep re-infecting the colony     RDY-B
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Cindi
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« Reply #18 on: December 22, 2007, 11:35:17 PM »

Mark.  Yes, by my own admission, the colony was terribly weakened and I should have reacted much sooner, but simply, got to busy with work on the farm.  Mistakes made, lessons learned, always, I am one to readily admit to this.

Rdy-B.  When I united this weakened chalkbrood colony with a very strong colony I combined the entire brood chamber.  It was only one chamber, of course,that is a given, and there was really not an awful lot of bees, nor stored honey.  They never had a chance to store very much. The entire contents of this colony's box was combined.  I did not experience any chalkbrood after that, period.  Now...not to say that during the spring this colony may have the disease present, which would have been in the honey.  Entirely possible and only time will tell that tale.  I have marked this colony and will keep a close eye it in the spring time. I believe what you are saying to be true, it does make excellent sense.  If a chalkbrood issue arises again and there is a need for unition of colonies, I will keep this in mind, prevention of disease transference is premium.  Agreed.  I am still learning, I am listening.  Have a great and wonderful day, Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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