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Author Topic: AFB control by shaking bees onto new foundation or combs  (Read 3077 times)
Bill W.
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« on: August 14, 2008, 10:58:53 PM »

I just got the August Journal of Economic Entomology, which has a study entitled _Evaluation of the Shaking Technique for the Economic Management of American Foulbrood Disease of Honey Bees_ by Pernal, Albright, and Melathopoulos.

The short version of their results is: shaking all of the bees into a hive with unused foundation resulted in complete or nearly-complete suppression of the AFB and shaking all of the bees into a hive with drawn comb lead to continuing light infection of AFB which came to an end within three months.

Given the production advantage of the drawn comb and the fact that the AFB infection burned out within a few months of the shake-down, shaking AFB-infected bees into a new hive with drawn comb appears to be a good method for both clearing the infection and keeping some productivity.

This also leads me to believe that burning a hive, bees and all, may be an outdated method of AFB control.
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annette
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« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2008, 12:43:32 AM »

This is extremely interesting and gives us hope.

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Bill W.
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« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2008, 12:52:45 AM »

It turns out the whole article is available on-line for free if you want to read it yourself:

Edit:

I guess they don't like direct linking to the articles or the indexes.  To get to the article, go to the following link.  Then, click on Online Edition, followed by Journal of Economic Entomology, then Number 4, August 2008, and you will then find the article last in the Apiculture and Social Insects section.  Click on the title and scroll down to find the Free PDF link.

Link
« Last Edit: August 15, 2008, 01:27:37 PM by Bill W. » Logged

Moonshae
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« Reply #3 on: August 15, 2008, 07:32:15 AM »

Our inspectors recommend shaking onto foundation, burning the old frames, and scorching the rest of the woodenware.
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BenC
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« Reply #4 on: August 15, 2008, 12:14:02 PM »

I can't get the link to work.

This also leads me to believe that burning a hive, bees and all, may be an outdated method of AFB control.

In someways it's outdated as some consider it wasteful of resources (I see the word economics in the journal and study titles) but it's certainly quick, easy, and effective, and that's what matters to inspectors, as well as keepers who can't afford to take on risks associated with "nearly-complete suppression" or "continuing light infection of AFB which came to an end within three months."  Of the 2 control methods you mention in your "short version" sentence: Personally I would never shake an infected colony onto drawn comb. 

Some states (I think Md is one) have the capability of irradiating equipment but I really don't know what that entails and the inspector would probably insist the colony get closed up and burned, or the bees irradiated (killed) too but I don't know.
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Bill W.
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« Reply #5 on: August 15, 2008, 01:36:16 PM »

Sorry about that.  The direct link expires.  I fixed it in the post above.

I think I would do a shakedown onto foundation, but the drawn comb results are very interesting, because they add to the idea that we don't really know what causes an AFB break-out.  I can culture AFB from used brood comb in my hives, yet they have no symptoms.  I have read the same kind of results elsewhere, indicating that AFB may be present in just about every hive, yet not active.  I could see why shakedown onto foundation might interrupt the infection, but I would expect shakedown onto comb would result in a quick build-up of AFB and a return to foll-blown infection.  That fact that it did not in this study is very interesting.

We still have to wonder what set of conditions actually allows AFB to get the upper hand in a hive.
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rdy-b
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« Reply #6 on: August 15, 2008, 03:01:02 PM »

I have not read the article -but i do know this when you shake them down onto new foundation -you must have one frame of drawn comb in there -so the bees can expel the honey in there honey gut -that honey which they are carrying from the infected hive will start the process all over again-its just a matter of time and conditions for the spores to sporulate -they should expel with in twenty-four hours -then that frame of comb is removed -and sugar syrup is feed-this technique is not new -RDY-B
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SlickMick
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« Reply #7 on: May 28, 2009, 05:09:16 AM »

Again I find myself resurrecting an old thread as AFB has reared its  head in one of my hives.

Having read only the abstract of the research it appears as though the technique may be an appropriate way of dealing with AFB. It appears as though the only loss to the beekeeper apart from time and cost in sterilizing the hive being the loss of frames, brood and some time in production.

It is an interesting process and one worth considering within the wider context of treating the disease.

Mick

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On the outer Barcoo where the churches are few,
   And men of religion are scanty,
On a road never cross'd 'cept by folk that are lost,
   One Michael Magee had a shanty.

Now this Mike was the dad of a ten-year-old lad,
   Plump, healthy, and stoutly conditioned;
He was strong as the best, but poor Mike had no rest
   For the youngster had never been christened,
A BUSH CHRISTENING - A.B. "Banjo" Paterson http://www.middlemiss.org/lit/authors/patersonab/poetry/christen.html
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