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Author Topic: Cold Winter-SHB  (Read 958 times)
jclark96
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« on: February 22, 2010, 08:01:38 PM »

I know I don't see all of them, but everytime I have checked the tray under my hive there are a few more dead SHBs in there. I don't know if they have a natural attrition rate through the winter, or if the cold is getting to them? Good news? Maybe?
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doak
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« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2010, 09:21:11 PM »

I don't know but one of my die outs had 4 boxes of capped honey and no hive beetles. I also got to it before the wax moth did. Also no dead bees inside. The disappearing act.HuhHuh?? CCD?
I think they have to have the warmth of the bees to survive. :)doak
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David LaFerney
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« Reply #2 on: February 22, 2010, 10:22:44 PM »

This is only speculation based on what I know about similar insects, and what little I know about SHB.

After SHB lay eggs in a hive they hatch out into a maggot looking larva which feeds in the hive until it is ready to metamorphose (?) through a pupa phase into an adult. Just like bees do inside of capped brood.  Except hive beetles pupate in the ground, so they crawl out of the hive - probably attracted to light - drop to the ground where they turn into an adult beetle, mate, and fly back up into your hive to start all over again.

During cold weather I'm going to guess that those tender larva can't survive the weather long enough to crawl out and get into the ground.  So I speculate that the adults either don't lay eggs during cold weather - or they lay eggs but the eggs don't hatch until it warms up.

The resident adult SHB have decreasing shelter as the cluster gets smaller, and the weather gets colder - they also have empty comb to hide in as stores get used up.

Again, largely guess work.

If you have a SBB/Oil trap and a single well guarded entrance that forces the SHBs to cross the trap while running a gauntlet of guard bees you will not only trap a lot of adults before they can get into your hive, but you will also kill a lot of the larva before they can leave the hive - before they become adults.

Maybe a hygienic trait for hive beetles will eventually emerge.
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"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." Samuel Clemens

Putting the "ape" in apiary since 2009.
tillie
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« Reply #3 on: February 22, 2010, 10:50:39 PM »

The last few weeks in Atlanta have been extremely cold for us - 20s and low 30s.  We had a 55 degree day on the weekend so I opened my hive.  I had one dead hive - bees lying dead in the hive and hive beetles who must depend on the bees for warmth and survival also lying dead in the hive.

My other two hives were alive.  They are full of bees and hive beetles.  I lifted up the baggie feeder to replace it in each hive and at least 50 beetles were under the baggie.  Last year I saw no beetles in the hive at the beginning of the season.  Beetles appeared around late June.  I hope this doesn't mean I am now going to have year round SHBs.

Linda T in Atlanta
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David LaFerney
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« Reply #4 on: February 23, 2010, 09:02:22 AM »

They are full of bees and hive beetles.  I lifted up the baggie feeder to replace it in each hive and at least 50 beetles were under the baggie.  Last year I saw no beetles in the hive at the beginning of the season.  Beetles appeared around late June.  I hope this doesn't mean I am now going to have year round SHBs.

Linda T in Atlanta

Do you do anything to try to control them?  I really don't look forward to finding nasty masses of beetle maggots in a hive.
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"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." Samuel Clemens

Putting the "ape" in apiary since 2009.
tillie
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« Reply #5 on: February 23, 2010, 10:34:06 AM »

When they are out in force I use all kinds of IPM measures - the Freeman beetle trap on the bottom, AJ's beetle traps inside between the frames and when they are really out there, I put the homemade Sonny-Mel trap that I made following their directions (see my blog) on the top of the frames.

Linda T
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