Welcome, Guest

Author Topic: Bee Viruses  (Read 1342 times)


  • Super Bee
  • *****
  • Posts: 2011
  • Gender: Male
Bee Viruses
« on: February 11, 2008, 04:25:49 PM »
I had the opportunity to attend a lecture by Dr. Judy Chen of Beltsville, Maryland labs on bee viruses. For us keepers, a few lessons i took away from the lecture.
1.Bees under stress succumb to viruses(68% of all hives tested positive for two or more viruses in a random sample in MAAREC states.)DWV and Black queen cell virus being most common two.
2.Mites are biggest transfer vector followed by food.
3. get rid of old comb, and stop stressing bees(pollination and migratory beeks take note).

Regarding mites, in a test she took mites w/ Kashmir virus and installed one mite per cell in thirty cells per hive. W/in one week over 60% of mites and bees tested postive w/ kashmir virus. She also added two per cell up to five. Didn'rt mater. It just spread a little quicker. Soo, it only takes thirty mites in a whole hive to infect hive w/in one week. If your bees are stressed, the virus will express itself and kill your bees and hive

stop stressing our bees is the moral I guess. Lots more was learned but its hard to recall and put into organized thoughts w/o a recording of lecture. I was very fascinated by this lecture and the one on bee feeding which I wrote a little about in another thread,.
"The more complex the Mind, the Greater the need for the simplicity of Play".

Offline NWIN Beekeeper

  • Professional Beekeeper
  • House Bee
  • **
  • Posts: 338
  • Gender: Male
Re: Bee Viruses
« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2008, 07:26:23 PM »
Thank you very much for posting what you gleaned from the lecture.

Many folks attend them and then keep everything to themselves - like its a secret.

The sharing of information is what this site (and what we) are about.

A lot of the viruses that varroa carry are very contagious.
I have read these same facts from some college white papers about this study or that.

I believe few people realize just how few bees, spores, or bacteria it takes to create a problem.

I would be curious to know the recommended protocols to eliminate the viruses we frequently cross.

The first step in most would include the obvious reduce stress.
While vague, the idea does make you think about how the bees are living.

There is nothing new under the sun. Only your perspective changes to see it anew.


  • Super Bee
  • *****
  • Posts: 2011
  • Gender: Male
Re: Bee Viruses
« Reply #2 on: February 12, 2008, 04:42:25 PM »
she suggewsted generally good bee management techniques and removing old comb. She also mentioned that frames and boxes could be irradiated w/ gamma rays. Some states have this available. Some businesses can provide this service as well. NJ is investigating whether the DEP will buy one and provide this for comm beeks for a fee to help reduce disease transfer.

I learned a lot, and realize I know so little which is why I shared info. I was blown away by the fact it took literally the insertion of 30 mites in a whole two deep hive and w/in one week 68% infection rate.
"The more complex the Mind, the Greater the need for the simplicity of Play".

Offline Cindi

  • Galactic Bee
  • ******
  • Posts: 9825
  • Gender: Female
Re: Bee Viruses
« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2008, 09:38:21 AM »
Konasdad, good, keep us informed of things that jump out at you, we all need to learn more.

I read somewhere that if you see 1 mite, you can expect 100 within cells.

Now picture this, if this is a reasonably accurate statement -- 100 mites hatch, they lay some eggs (lets say 5 to make it simple), that is 500 new mites to make 5 mites each, that is a very loose statement of numbers, but that gives kind of the picture of how fast they can take over, I hate the varroa mite, and I don't even like the word hate, it is a very strong and ugly word, but I do  :evil: :evil: :evil:  Have an awesome and wonderful day, love our life on this earth. Cindi
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