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No varroa in wild bee brood

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dudley 

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It is not offen you get to see wild comb but I had the opportunity to inspect a mass of brood comb for varroa that had naturally fallen down a chimney the other day. (photos are on my recent thread) And quess what? When I broke open the drone cells I couldn't find a single mite. There were plenty of cells to choose from, but each time I opened them up, no mites to be seen.

If i am correct and they have zero or a really low varroa count do you think this is to due to the bees cleaning themselves and dropping the mites some 6mts to the ground down the chimney or simply that wild bees dont have varroa?

I have still kept the brood and wondered if my bee inspector would want to take a look to confirm my findings, I will call him tomorrow.
Steve.
 

Onge 

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Wow that's good news :)

Keep us updated.
 

Hivemaker. 

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Or could it be that the bee's took up residence not that long ago, and came from a well managed (in respect of varroa ) hive,or have these same bee's been continuously in the same place?
It was varroa that wiped out the feral colonys.
 

MuswellMetro 

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or it could be that coal tar and other coal based such as naphthalene and aromatic hydrocarbons from the old fire place below have similar effects to thymol
 
T

Tom Bick 

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Dont know if this is of interest but at Stoneleigh this year I had a chat with a chap who was trying to sell what he considered to be a new product to reduce varroa it was a powder placed at the entrance and the bees walked through it and that somehow got rid of the varroa or so he claimed I have an open mined on this.

However he said that the powder was based on the soot and chemicals found up old chimneys as colonies in chimneys have been found to have lower counts of varroa when they are removed.
 
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dudley 

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Or could it be that the bee's took up residence not that long ago, and came from a well managed (in respect of varroa ) hive,or have these same bee's been continuously in the same place?
It was varroa that wiped out the feral colonys.
Bees have been there 2 years at least, It was sheer size and weight of comb and colony that brought this lump to the ground. There is still masses up the chimney.
 

MuswellMetro 

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Dont know if this is of interest but at Stoneleigh this year I had a chat with a chap who was trying to sell what he considered to be a new product to reduce varroa it was a powder placed at the entrance and the bees walked through it and that somehow got rid of the varroa or so he claimed I have an open mined on this.

However he said that the powder was based on the soot and chemicals found up old chimneys as colonies in chimneys have been found to have lower counts of varroa when they are removed.

I have just had soil contamination test done on an old Metropolitan railway coal/ash dump, it was so contaminated with coal tar naphthalene and aromatic hydrocarbon that we had to wear protection siuts on inspecting..and not the bee type ....so coal tar residue in honey is a no no
 

dudley 

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Dont know if this is of interest but at Stoneleigh this year I had a chat with a chap who was trying to sell what he considered to be a new product to reduce varroa it was a powder placed at the entrance and the bees walked through it and that somehow got rid of the varroa or so he claimed I have an open mined on this.

However he said that the powder was based on the soot and chemicals found up old chimneys as colonies in chimneys have been found to have lower counts of varroa when they are removed.
Really interesting. I must say that I had to stick my finger in and taste some of the honey that was oozing onto the carpet and it had a very strong sooty taste (not nice at all) even though it had no soot or mess on it.
 

Brosville 

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could it perchance be that bees if left alone are innately healthy, and such things as varroa only get a hold as a result of the constant faffing and interference that cause the natural balance of bacteria and natural nest heat and atmosphere to be destroyed in innumerable voyeuristic "inspections"?
But than that'd mean those drippy 'ippy natural beekeepers got it right..... surely not! :svengo:
 

Hivemaker. 

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Thats why all the feral colonys living in holes in tree's were not affected by varroa....because they were never tampered with........they must of all died out round here of some other cause that just happened to be at the same time varroa arrived on the scene.
 

dudley 

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could it perchance be that bees if left alone are innately healthy, and such things as varroa only get a hold as a result of the constant faffing and interference that cause the natural balance of bacteria and natural nest heat and atmosphere to be destroyed in innumerable voyeuristic "inspections"?
But than that'd mean those drippy 'ippy natural beekeepers got it right..... surely not! :svengo:
And lets guess what type of hives you have, eeeerr TBH Yep! Good for you, you may be right. I have just set my stepson up with a swarm in a TBH.
 

Brosville 

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Was the advent of varroa and the use of neonicotinoids not roughly concurrent?
(the "icide" weakens the bees, varroa administers the coup de grace and gets the blame......)
You'd tend to get very little pesticides in a chimney (unlike a hollow tree in our now barren green concrete chemicalised "countryside")
 

Hivemaker. 

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The countyside where you live Bros sounds like hell........pleased i don't live in that kind of countryside.
 

Brosville 

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Round here it's a patchwork quilt, some of it's wonderful - fields unsprayed for decades which are full of butterflies, sadly bordered by monocultures where the same crop is grown year after year with a constant barrage of toxins....
When ploughed the only sound is that of the tractor - never a bird in sight........the land is stone dead....
A beekeeper to whom I gave a swarm last year lost it through spray drift on the field adjoining her hives not far from here..........
 

tony350i 

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It is not offen you get to see wild comb but I had the opportunity to inspect a mass of brood comb for varroa that had naturally fallen down a chimney the other day. (photos are on my recent thread) And quess what? When I broke open the drone cells I couldn't find a single mite. There were plenty of cells to choose from, but each time I opened them up, no mites to be seen.

If i am correct and they have zero or a really low varroa count do you think this is to due to the bees cleaning themselves and dropping the mites some 6mts to the ground down the chimney or simply that wild bees dont have varroa?

I have still kept the brood and wondered if my bee inspector would want to take a look to confirm my findings, I will call him tomorrow.
Steve.
I would be interested in the cell size of the brood comb it you still have it, if you could find the smallest group of cells and measure across ten of them

Thanks Tony
 
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