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Author Topic: Threshold for SHB  (Read 4010 times)
Animator
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« on: September 26, 2009, 07:38:52 PM »

I have always had SHB. It's never been a problem until I decided to try and build up brood and add some patties.  I wanted to get more bees for the upcoming season.  Well I added pollen patties to 2 hives and now they have quite a few more beetles than I am used to seeing.  I suspect that these patties my have made conditions better for the beetles. I removed the patties and am wondering.  Is there a treatment threshold ?   Should I wait and see if the bees can deal with this.  I really don't want to add checkmite.  I was also considering putting these hives in my patio for a while (concrete floor) to break up their larva cycle.  I live in south Florida

Thoughts ?   Thanks in advance.
Mike 
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asprince
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« Reply #1 on: September 26, 2009, 08:20:05 PM »

Greetings Animator. I see that this is your first post.......WELCOME.

I hear that pollen patties will put the SHB into high gear. You may want to rethink their use. Concrete under the hives may help break the cycle but it will do nothing for the ones flying in from other areas.


Steve
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« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2009, 08:20:50 PM »

Yes, they love the pollen patties.  South Florida is gonna be beetle central, so you may want to get some beetle traps as a precaution.  There are lots of types of traps available, you don't need checkmite.

Don't bother moving to the cement, just make sure that the hive is in full sun.  The larvae can wriggle a ways to find dirt, but they don't seem to like sun so much.

Rick
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« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2009, 09:13:00 PM »

if your hives have top entrances, will that break the cycle since the larvae can not get to the ground?  I know this has come up before but I wonder about new research or answers.
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« Reply #4 on: September 28, 2009, 09:06:50 PM »

   I don't know anything about number of beetles as a threshold, if she starts laying and the grubs get going the hive can easily be run off.  I have lost hives to these little curses and have seen many to almost none adults in the before they run off my bees.  I then need to rinse the combs before bees will use them again.

     I seem to remember reading somewhere about using a tray outside the hive entrance.  The tray was a few inches deep and wide and spanned the front of the solid bottom board.  It was filled with sawdust and then FGMO or such was added.  When the larvae came out the hive to pupate they wound up in the sawdust and drown/died/croaked... evil  Since I only now have screened bottom boards I am going to try a below hive tray filled the same way and use an in hive trap to try and maintain. huh
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« Reply #5 on: September 28, 2009, 11:18:24 PM »

I am going to roll the dice and wait and see. This will be a learning experience. I will hope the bees can deal with the problem. I may go ahead and move them later this week, I am not sure what the threshold is for these things, but there is only one way to learn. Some of the pics I have seen look like worse SHB problems than I might have, so I have my fingers crossed.

I tried the link on the trap but it wouldn't open.

Thanks all
Mike
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SlickMick
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« Reply #6 on: September 29, 2009, 04:06:32 AM »

I am going to roll the dice and wait and see. This will be a learning experience. I will hope the bees can deal with the problem. I may go ahead and move them later this week, I am not sure what the threshold is for these things, but there is only one way to learn. Some of the pics I have seen look like worse SHB problems than I might have, so I have my fingers crossed.

I tried the link on the trap but it wouldn't open.

Thanks all
Mike


That's a pretty risky approach, Mike. The SHB is able to wipe out your hive in a week if they get a head on. Do yourself a fabour and get some traps in. Also do a search on shb and check out other things you can do to manage the pest

Mick
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« Reply #7 on: September 29, 2009, 04:19:55 AM »

I agree, but its 2 hives only. I have 50. I have a sneaky feeling it's too late anyway. It's almost a week. If the SHB looks worse, I'll act. If its the same, I'll wait.  It's about the experience. Will I be upset if it goes bad ? Yes....  I'll bring some traps when I stop to check them Weds afternoon. I don't want to use an organophosphate.

Keep your fingers crossed.
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« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2009, 08:47:35 PM »

I'm heading out tomorrow to check on my wayward hive.  I'll try and get some pics and post them here. 
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« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2009, 04:06:19 PM »

UPDATE:

Went in today to check things.  As I walked up to the hive, I sighed relief not seeing grubs or goo oozing out of the hive. (Some of the pics posted in this website as an example). I saw lots of bee's doing their thing. So far so good.... As I walk up to the hive, I see a SHB walking on the outside- not good..

First hive opened and low and behold, I end up killing about 10 beetles. I also see the bees actively grabbing (or trying to grab) them and fly them away. The beetles have wings like ladybugs. I've got good brood in the lower chambers and lots of activity.  Without actually having a perfect way to count, I'd guess I see less beetles than last week in the first hive, but I am disturbed that there is no new build up in the empty new box I placed above the older one...hmm

Second hive, open the top and check the frames....new honey...go to lift the honey super off, wow- its heavy - Thats good too!I checked the empty hive body I added and sure enough they are building up the new frames. So that seems good.  So I remain hopeful and optimistic. Seems like less beetles in the hive but it's strictly by guess. 
Mike
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SlickMick
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« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2009, 05:16:13 PM »

That  is good news. Hope that it continues for you

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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« Reply #11 on: October 05, 2009, 05:37:07 PM »

I worry about it -believe me.  The nursery where they are at is tooafraid to approach the hive and just take a peek now and then.   I guess that's kinda funny to me ! 
Prognosis.   Guarded.
Mike
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Animator
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« Reply #12 on: October 24, 2009, 06:35:39 PM »

Update 2:
I checked today.  Still too many beetles for my personal taste but the bees are thriving , drawing out comb and are full of a bright yellow honey.  I've never tasted or seen honey so yellow ! Further check revealed a squash harvest down the road.  I also have never seen no much activity in a hive.  Hundreds of bees flying out and in. All coming and going in one direction.  The honey is a yellow golden and super thin and sweet. 

Anyhow as I am still building up hives I went ahead and got some of those new cutts beetle blasters and will put a few in the hive as soon as they come in. I don't want to contaminate this awesome honey and believe these traps will help.
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« Reply #13 on: October 25, 2009, 12:44:53 AM »

   Hope it stays that way (Good). 
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« Reply #14 on: November 04, 2009, 03:45:40 PM »

I have not used pollen patties just for this reason although I plan to for 2010 season. 

I would only put on enough for a few days at a time and keep traps of some sort in the hive.   
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« Reply #15 on: November 04, 2009, 04:35:30 PM »

Grrrrrr! The beetles have been the only real problem for me this year, seems like they have a new General or something! I've been keeping my hives as crowded as I can with very little space not covered by bees which seems to help a lot. I started using boric acid traps and they seem to be working out great.

Scott
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« Reply #16 on: November 04, 2009, 06:46:24 PM »

as for beetle thresholds, I not sure there is one, it mainly depends on the hive, on some hive's at UGA they introduced beetles in a good number of hives, each hive received 2500 beetles each and and all hives did fine (these were all healthy strong hives), it just when weak hives get beetles the loses became high, beetles are attracted to pollen patties, if you feed patties only put enough in at one time to last a single day or you could get beetle larva explosion.

These are the new traps most around here are praising. and the bait tube he sales is a must, beetles love the stuff.

http://georgiabees.blogspot.com/2009/10/video-on-filling-and-installing-traps.html
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« Reply #17 on: January 24, 2010, 06:58:38 PM »

As far as I know, there hasn't been a threshold established for shb like it has for varroa (3000).  I think the reason is there are too many variables to set a number, as just a few will over-run a weak hive withinn a few days, while a large, strong hive can have lots crawling around in side it with no apparent ill-effects.  My personal threshold is ONE is too many!  I would put screened bottom boards (SBB) of the type that the screen encompasses the entire bottom rather than just a "trap door".  Since installing sbb's I haven't seen a single shb in my hives.  So. FLA is crawling with the little bastards and I have lost 5 or 6 hives to them before installing the sbb's.  Everything else I've tried heretofore ended up in failure.   I just installed a new hive from a cut out I did.  Typically this weakens and stresses a hive allowing them to get a foothold.  The shb's were moving in in large numbers since this was a small colony to begin with.  The sbb saved my Obama  afro  grin  I went from the hive being lousy with them to none within a few days in spite of feeding them syrup (which usually causes a spike in shb numbers).   As for feeding pollen patties,  I wouldn't if they have any pollen stored in the comb.  The shb produce a yeast that combines with the pollen that produces a pheromone that mimicks the bees alarm pheromone.  This pheromone not only attracts other shb's but it sets off the alarm that builds until it makes the bees bail out.   
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« Reply #18 on: January 24, 2010, 07:46:00 PM »

you could always use guardstar as a ground drench to kill the larva and pupa and break their cycle.... It never gets into the hive and kills the SHB when they try to pupate...
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« Reply #19 on: January 26, 2010, 11:42:19 PM »

you could always use guardstar as a ground drench to kill the larva and pupa and break their cycle.... It never gets into the hive and kills the SHB when they try to pupate...
This only works for the shb larvae under your hive.  Generally there are other hives in the area (both feral and domestic) that breed them.  They fly in from everywhere.  The key is to keep them from setting up housekeeping inside the hive to produce larvae.  No larvae exiting the hive negates the need for gardstar underneath. 
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