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Author Topic: Russians... advice needed/wanted  (Read 2635 times)
New Bee
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Posts: 4

Location: Belews Creek, NC

« Reply #20 on: December 03, 2012, 09:37:17 PM »

From Ray Bayless...
I could tell the difference in mite load between my Italian and Russian hives this year. I didn't do a sugar shake but the only hive I had come down with deformed wings were Itallian. I don't think Russian bees are mite free but they are supposed to be resistant to both trachea and varroa mites. Have you seen a difference?"

Hey, Ray...
   I really can't say quite yet.  Again I'm a first year beek and I've only had my Russians since June.  I will say this...I was under the (incorrect) assumption that new hives rarely get heavy mite loads during their first year.  As I said before, I have 2 Italians and 2 Russians and they are all grouped within a few feet of each other.  Just for the heck of it I slid in the white grid IPM sticky boards under all the hives and then pulled them 3 days later.  No sugar dusting or anything.  1 Italian and 1 Russian hive had huge mite drops.  The other 2 had practically none.  The Italian with mites showed some DWV, but the Russian did not. far as I can tell so far, I don't see a lot of difference between the two breeds as to how they deal with mites.  I'm pretty sure that if I had not treated them, the mites would have won.  Maybe after I keep them another year I will have a better feel for their differences.  Hope this helps.

lazy shooter
New Bee
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Posts: 49

Location: W Texas

« Reply #21 on: December 05, 2012, 10:54:33 AM »

I hate to answer a question with a question, but has anyone ever successfully raised Russian Bees in the deep south or the southern part of Texas
Galactic Bee
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Posts: 3773

Location: Lewisberry, PA

« Reply #22 on: December 05, 2012, 10:59:27 AM »

Charlie Harper raised Russians in the deep south for many years.

Of course the whole idea of taking a cold winter hardy bee and propogating them in Louisiana for many years was questionable to me. But that is the Government for ya!  grin
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