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Author Topic: What says the grapevine?  (Read 1644 times)
BjornBee
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« on: April 11, 2012, 03:05:38 PM »

Had an interesting conversation with a couple beekeepers over the past day. Not sure if this is rumors gone wild, or perhaps there is more to the details. I'm just looking for some information if it is out there.

Some details....

Seems there have been more than a few beekeepers who got packages this year in the Philadelphia area, who have very aggressive bees. And now there is at least one concerned breeder in Tennessee that is concerned due to his proximaty to another breeder who brought in large numbers of bees from a breeder in Georgia who is being "looked" at for possible aggressive bees, possibly AHB. Seems this breeder in Georgia may of thought it was a good idea to prop up his own stock by bringing in genetics from Texas. This may of also been all compounded since some package producers pass along packages for those producers needing help which happens all the time. One breeder passing along queens or packages this year means getting help when they in turn are beiind.

The chatter behind the scenes on the breeder in Georgia is not good. And when something like suggestions of a breeder having AHB being passed along to end consumers, it is not good. Due to this, I will not mention names or businesses. I am just trying to confirm or deny what is being passed along. I was asked to see if I could find out anything one way or another. Might just be over-reactive beekeepers, or even started by someone who as an itch to scratch. Might be true. Not sure at this point. Commercial guys can rally and close any further leaks of information rather quickly as it can be harmful to many beekeepers. So after the initial leak or chatter, it seems difficult to get confirmation on details.

Has anyone heard anything along the lines of the details I mentioned? Feel free to email privately at mikenida@ptd.net

Thank you.
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BoBn
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« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2012, 03:16:03 PM »

If I ask someone:
Does the water taste funny?
Have you noticed?

Guess what I get for an answer. rolleyes

Bob
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"Millions of innocent men, women, and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined, and imprisoned; yet we have not advanced one inch toward uniformity. What has been the effect of coercion? To make one-half the world fools and the other half hypocrites."
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iddee
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« Reply #2 on: April 11, 2012, 05:21:07 PM »

There were over 300 packages from Ga. brought into this area the last few days of march. I have been in contact with a number of the receivers, mostly newbees. I know there are more than one breeder in Ga., but these are from one of the largest and so far, no reports of aggressive behavior.
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Ken
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« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2012, 05:26:15 PM »

If I hear any reports I'll PM you.But I have not heard of any incidents locally.
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BjornBee
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« Reply #4 on: April 11, 2012, 05:31:06 PM »

This was just sent to me:
http://www.wate.com/story/17368825/partially-africanized-bees-now-in-east-tennessee

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G3farms
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« Reply #5 on: April 11, 2012, 05:49:35 PM »

What really bothers me about this is nobody is telling the other side of the story...........when did this keep open his hives, was it one of the cold, cloudy, rainy days or could they have been queenless or was there a skunk or other pest bothering the hives (yes there is bears in some parts of Monroe county), is the keep a bumbling type of fella, etc, etc.

I almost think this is getting a little blown out of proportion myself...........just my opinion only.

Monroe county is the next county over from me so I am hoping it is just a fluke.
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see my swarms and cut outs at https://www.youtube.com/user/soapy22bullet?feature=mhee

those hot bees will have you steppin and a fetchin like your heads on fire and your @ss is a catchin!!!

Bees will be bees and do as they please!
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« Reply #6 on: April 11, 2012, 05:54:15 PM »

G3,
It may be worth a call to your state Apiarist if you have one. If it turns out to be a widespread event,the state should be responsible enough to notify people.
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AllenF
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« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2012, 05:56:54 PM »

17% AHB.   Is that 17% from the mean side of the bee?    Several, several years ago I bought some queens from one of the larger Texas breeders.   Designer queens to solve everyones woes.   Great bees until the second generation.   The queen daughters were as mean as could be.   You could not walk out in the yard without getting hit.   I torched the leadership and they saw the light and are nice to today.  I would bet you could find 17% AHB in just about any bee yard on America now with the way bees travel north to south, east to west through the year.
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G3farms
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« Reply #8 on: April 11, 2012, 06:06:37 PM »

Allen that is kind of how I felt about it.

Buzzbee I might give Lynda a email, that is the lady in the news interview. She lives in the next county over (Blount), kind of to the upper side of Monroe and Loudon. Our state man is almost impossible to get a hold of and he lives in the same county as Lynda.
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see my swarms and cut outs at https://www.youtube.com/user/soapy22bullet?feature=mhee

those hot bees will have you steppin and a fetchin like your heads on fire and your @ss is a catchin!!!

Bees will be bees and do as they please!
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« Reply #9 on: April 11, 2012, 06:12:38 PM »

When I lived in Connecticut in 1978, I had a hive of Italians (from an unknown swarm ) that just about killed my neighbor's dog and stung people walking along the road about 300 feed from my hive.  They were constantly trying to rob my other hives.   My neighbors and my wife complained about always having bees trying to get in their cars.  I kept getting nailed.  Several times a week I was getting stung.  The bad hive also had a bad effect on my other 10 hives. It seem like everytime I thought about working the bees, I would get stung. I ended up taking almost all the stores from the hive and moving the hive a few miles away (during the day) and re-queening.   It was a devilish hive.  Also one of the few times that I have been stung by a queen.

It seems like right now, there is a problem in Pennsylvania.  Are these hot bees that were shipped in the package (which is common and I have seen it before many times),  or the new offspring  of the package queen?
It makes a difference.
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BjornBee
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« Reply #10 on: April 11, 2012, 07:40:42 PM »

All bees are at least 17% AHB. I did not know that. Can anyone confirm this? Seems many folks have been testing and developing procedures to identify AHB over the years. But I never yet had a confirmation that all bees were at least 17% AHB. Or is this just slice & dice rationalization?

BTW, Yes, the packages from one of the suppliers here in Pa. has been confirmed as packages originating from the same producer in Georgia and the same as the operation in Tennessee.

When you have been in bees for a long number of years, I agree you probably have seen everything. So it begs to make one wonder when this same beekeeper has hives hot enough to pick up the phone and call in the state, that perhaps....just maybe....all bees up to that point were not 17% AHB. To have bees all those years and have hives go ballistic that they need testing....it is hard to rationalize that the bees have been like this for the past 20 years. Something happened, even if some want to minimize it.

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G3farms
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« Reply #11 on: April 11, 2012, 07:53:18 PM »

Where did you come up with "all bees are 17% AHB"?

Back in 1978 I would say they were probably black German bees, I use to have them in the late 70's and early 80's, I think it would have been easier to have kept yellow jackets sometimes.

If you are referring to me as wanting to minimize it, as I stated that is just MY opinion.
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see my swarms and cut outs at https://www.youtube.com/user/soapy22bullet?feature=mhee

those hot bees will have you steppin and a fetchin like your heads on fire and your @ss is a catchin!!!

Bees will be bees and do as they please!
BjornBee
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« Reply #12 on: April 11, 2012, 08:00:49 PM »

Relax G3. I did read from Allen that he was betting that every bee yard in the states were at least 17% AHB. I would easily take that bet for an easy grand.  grin That was the source of the comments.
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AllenF
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« Reply #13 on: April 11, 2012, 08:03:56 PM »

Beat me down and take my money.   I just got my taxes filed today.   
Back to where the bees came from.  With really hot bees, possible AHB, I think most anyone would take the loss on the bees to keep AHB out of your hands and causing you to have a bad name with most everyone.  Did they know about the attitude of the bees before they were shipped?  Early enough to requeen or torch the lot? 
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hardwood
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« Reply #14 on: April 11, 2012, 08:42:32 PM »

We don;t sell packages (quick dump into a box and close them up so you never really have a chance to see their true attitude), but we do sell bunches of nucs every year. With nucs it's a good bit different...they are checked several times (for mated queens/population/laying patterns etc) and temperment can be judged to an extent. Even though temperment can and does change with colony strength if a nuc is anywhere near hot I won't sell it!

Here in FL I am required to have my breeder colonies (the ones I graft from) be DNA tested for AHB BEFORE I can graft from them. I still open mate my queens and have to saturate the area with tested drone doner colonies to hedge my bet against the AHB genetics creeping in.

I can't say if GA or TX have the same programs or not.

In the end I would say that this (these) package supplier(s) have to have known at some point that they had aggressive bees in their yards and chose to shake the packages anyway...maybe thinking that the queens they gave them would change all that??

Scott
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« Reply #15 on: April 11, 2012, 09:02:26 PM »

I still open mate my queens and have to saturate the area with tested drone doner colonies to hedge my bet against the AHB genetics creeping in.

Scott, where do you position your drone donor hives to place the DCA in the queen's flight path?   Do you assume that the queen flies further from her hive than the drones fly from theirs?
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Jim 134
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« Reply #16 on: April 11, 2012, 09:12:52 PM »

I have not heard of any incidents locally.There were over 1,000 packages from Ga. brought into this area the last few weeks and more to come by the end of April at will bee 5,000 or so.



            BEE HAPPY Jim 134 Smiley
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hardwood
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« Reply #17 on: April 11, 2012, 09:45:21 PM »

Frame, I put my drone hives both in the same yard and, if I can get other yards in the near vicinity, space them out through the area. The hardest thing here in FL is finding mating yards that are any distance from other beekeeper's yards trying to "own" an area. I've got two yards that I use the most. One is surrounded by other commercial beekeepers (I'm talkin' 10-12) yards within 1/4 mi during our spring (northern beekeepers that stick hives without regard to anyone for the winter). I can only hope that these northern drones are ok. The other is very remote and I haven't been able to find any other hives within many miles...not that there aren't any...I just haven't been able to find them. On this second yard I have drone colonies in the same yard as well as 4 other yards all about 1/2 mi away.

Scott
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"In the first place, we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin. But this is predicated upon the person's becoming in every facet an American, and nothing but an American...There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn't an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag...We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language...And we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people."

Theodore Roosevelt 1907
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