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Author Topic: Mites, SHB and things  (Read 360 times)
Steel Tiger
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« on: April 20, 2013, 12:43:46 AM »

Is there anything that can be put on the ground under the hives that'll either kill or chase away mites and pest that fall through the SBB?
I'm planning on keeping cinnamon around to chase away ants, is there anything else that may help?
I decided that the bottom of the hives will be 12 inches above the ground, so I don't want to use anything that may fume up into the hives.
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brushwoodnursery
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« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2013, 07:06:48 AM »

My understanding from reading here and several other sources is that mites won't climb back up a distance after falling through the SBB. Doesn't make sense to me but that's what I've read.
 SHB must spend a portion of its life cycle in the ground. There are chemical insecticide Sad treatments for the ground around your yard. I'm going to try parasitic nematodes around mine. SHB will fly in from a distance using smell of the hive but why not treat? I'm going to be applying it and so is the only other beek I know within miles of here. Considering the lack of feral hives these days, it could reduce the chances. Then again, my girls have been very good at keeping them in check so far.
 Another interesting thing I found last year was a few wax moths on top of my screened inner covers. The smell drew them in up there but they couldn't get in to the combs.
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Steel Tiger
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« Reply #2 on: April 20, 2013, 09:56:08 AM »

 Yesterday I had to lay down grubx. I have a few spots on the lawn that turned to bare dirt because of grubs.
In the field, I want to stay away from pesticides. I've heard sprinkling diatomaceous earth on the ground around the hives will kill SHB and other things on the ground. I might give it a try.
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Intheswamp
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« Reply #3 on: April 20, 2013, 10:21:49 AM »

Ditto what Brushwood said about the mites' inability to climb back up...they're too small and the distance too great, plus I'm not sure if their sense of direction is that great, either.

Treating the ground is ok if you need it and shouldn't hurt anything.  If you actually *need* the ground treatment then you've already had one or more hives slimed by the beetles...the situation  being kinda like "after the cows out of the barn".  Things that will defend against them *before* they are a problem:  strong hives (mentioned a lot, but truly are medicine for several ailments), in-hive beetles traps such as Beetle Jail Juniors, etc., oil tray traps on the bottom, fine screening over the inner cover holes, a finger or hive tool smashing them when you see them.  For a hive that already has a strong population of beetles a guy came up with the idea of placing some screen mesh (I'd say #8, he says #6 I believe) across the top of a large container and putting an inch or two of soapy water in the container.  Then go through the hive shaking and bumping each frame over the screen...bees will bounce off the screen and fly whereas beetles will hit the screen and mostly go through into the soapy water and die.  Kinda time consuming but if the hive is being overrun..... ?

Cinnamon *may* help with the ants.  Different people have different results.  I smear it around on top of my inner cover...seems to help, but sometimes some stubborn, tough ants deal with it and come into a hive.  What I've started doing is setting boric acid bait traps beneath the hives...that seems to have worked the best for ants.

What size screen are you using on your screened inner cover?  I've found that wax moth can and will pass through #8 mesh.

Best wishes,
Ed
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10framer
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« Reply #4 on: April 20, 2013, 10:50:45 AM »

you can get the nematodes from a place in perry georgia but if you have larvae in the ground you've taken a big hit already.  the beetles fly in from other areas. 
i've never seen wax moth damage a healthy hive. strong colonies cure a lot.  managing the space seems to be more important than it used to be. 
my bees came from two different beekeepers hundreds of miles apart and one didn't treat but neither had any mite issues.  in the late 90's i didn't have a single hive that didn't have mites.  all my stock was feral back then though and varroa was still fairly new to the area. 
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