Small Cell not effective.

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Hivemaker. 

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IMPACT: 2008-10-01 TO 2009-09-30 The work supported by the grant has now shown conclusively that providing honey bee colonies with frames of small-cell (4.9 mm) combs does not depress the reproduction of Varroa mites relative to giving colonies frames of standard-cell (5.4 mm) combs. These results match those of parallel investigations on this topic that were conducted independently in Georgia and Florida. It seems clear, therefore, that despite much interest by and discussion among beekeepers in using small-cell combs to control the nites without chemical, this approach is ineffective. The studies that have been supported by this grant will be reported through a publication in a peer-reviewed scientific journal (Apidologie) and a beekeepers' magazine (Bee Culture).

http://www.reeis.usda.gov/web/crisprojectpages/211868.html
 

Poly Hive 

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Thanks Hive maker. I rather suspected that this would be the case, as it was just too simplistic I thought to defeat such a foe.

PH
 

Brosville 

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I'm a little at a loss to completely understand their methodology, and what looks strongly like a deeply pseudo-scientific "conclusion" that they based upon their incredibly limited and skewed research.......
(I should say at this point that I've never particularly subscribed to the theory that small cell sizes are the ultimate in varroa control).
BUT, in my understanding, the theory goes that bees have "got larger" over many years, and it takes some seasons to fully regress bees to their more natural size - these tests seem to demand reversion over a season, which (as far as I understand it) was not deemed possible by those who practised and preached it......... which rather says to me that these experiments were deliberately designed to give a negative result (which is not truly scientific!)
I get rather cross at "research", that uses scientific tools, and tries to dress up "stitch up" results as "facts".
I'm keeping an open mind, and as with much in beekeeping I'm firmly in favour of letting the bees decide what comb and size they require, by leaving them completely alone to build what they want - I suspect that over several seasons, they will probably end up in smaller cells sizes - I'm certainly not going to dictate the size................I suspect that small cell sizes may play a part in dealing with varroa, but there are many other factors involved as well......
 

Hivemaker. 

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Who knows,if a World Renowned Bee Researcher does not know what he's talking about.
 

Brosville 

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As I said, I've got an open mind, but these tests look very flawed to me - the Lusbys took ages to get their bees into smaller cells, these guys are trying to force them to do so in one season, which is not even trying to reproduce the earlier work - it'd need enormous tests over many years to do so.......
SO, either the tests are flawed, OR they're jumping to conclusions far too early, having not followed the original methodology at all............or it's being misreported..........
I'm no respecter of academic qualification if they do sloppy/flawed work.
I think all that they could reasonably say after such limited tests is
"having forced reversion into one season, rather than the several recommended, we can see no difference as yet", NOT "it doesn't work"......
Its a bit like some learned Professor setting out to prove that your Missus' cake recipe is rubbish - he uses the same ingredients, and microwaves the result, then announces the recipe is cr*p, having ignored the need for allowing the yeast to work first, "knocking it back", allowing it to rise again, and finally oven cooking it for a fixed time.............:biggrinjester:
 

marcros 

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IMPACT: 2008-10-01 TO 2009-09-30 The work supported by the grant has now shown conclusively that providing honey bee colonies with frames of small-cell (4.9 mm) combs does not depress the reproduction of Varroa mites relative to giving colonies frames of standard-cell (5.4 mm) combs. These results match those of parallel investigations on this topic that were conducted independently in Georgia and Florida. It seems clear, therefore, that despite much interest by and discussion among beekeepers in using small-cell combs to control the nites without chemical, this approach is ineffective. The studies that have been supported by this grant will be reported through a publication in a peer-reviewed scientific journal (Apidologie) and a beekeepers' magazine (Bee Culture).

http://www.reeis.usda.gov/web/crisprojectpages/211868.html
Interesting article. thanks for posting.
 

Brosville 

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Putting my "scientific head" on for a moment, and having carefully reread the link, what it actually boils down to is that they've proved conclusively that just shoving bees into smaller cells doesn't work as a cure for varroa...... - my earlier cake analogy is in fact remarkably apposite! Even the strongest proponents of the technique wouldn't expect it to work...........
 
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Hivemaker. 

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Can't see as small cell is the answer to the varroa problem somehow,or else everyone would of changed to this, and the worlds varroa problems would be over. What happened to all the feral bee's we had pre varroa,loads around here died out soon after varroa arrived,many had been in certain locations for decades,why,because they did not use small cell.
 

Brosville 

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I don't think that small cells ARE, on their own a cure for varroa - if they do contribute in some way I would suspect it would be along with several other factors - as I said in one of my earlier posts, I've never had it at the top of my list of cures for varroa, but unless there's mistakes with the reporting in that link, they have in no way reproduced the work of those who said that it did make a difference, so it's hardly definitive proof, which is why my "pseudo-science" detectors went off loudly:biggrinjester:
 

Hivemaker. 

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I don't think that small cells ARE, on their own a cure for varroa

No its not,be good if it was though.
 

Brosville 

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It's really frustrating - I can find references to it, but there's a website that's down (Dennis Murrel's "bwrangler.com")- the bloke did work on small cells, which took the Lusbys work a bit further - rather than being the silver bullet that they claimed, he was of the opinion that small cell size was important, BUT not in a "controlled" sense - his opinion was that it was best they be allowed to build the size of comb they wanted and needed (which varied throughout the hive), rather than just imposing small cells on them........Which would appear to make sense - "bees know best".......
 

Hivemaker. 

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Think i have bee's that are trying this approach now,give them foundation and they draw evey size cell on it under the sun except how its embossed.
More interested in vsh bee's and eo's when needed,now which hives did i put those imported Primorsky queens in....
 

MuswellMetro 

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i'd like to know how they got italian bees to accept 4.9mm cells and what the eventual comb looked like

i tried thornes 4.9mm and cushman transfer method of starter strips multi bar frames with my italians x20%carnie and ended up with them always reverting to making 5.4mm cells, and dogs dinner comb. After a year still distorted comb, so i just let them biuld on 5.4mm foundation...perfect comb first time..so mine seem genetical programed to make 5.4, but are AMM the same?
 

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I'm a little at a loss to completely understand their methodology, and what looks strongly like a deeply pseudo-scientific "conclusion" that ...
At least CORNELL UNIVERSITY is very famous for honey bee researching.

Are they really producing pleasant humbug in front of huge US honey business?
 

mbc 

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Always seemed daft to me too when you consider all the wild/feral colonies on cell sizing of their own choosing having no more resistance than managed bees on 5.4 foundation.
I did read about the Lusby's succeses out in arizona though and they seem genuine people. Synergistic seems to be a buzz word with CCD researchers maybe a combination of things along with the small cells work for people like the Lusby's who report succeses with their small cell systems
 

Hivemaker. 

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Copied from another place. new today.

This, just in from Brazil

Quote:
Varroa destructor mite, an ectoparasite of Apis cerana and Apis mellifera honey bees, is the main pest responsible for problems in apiculture. However, the intensity of damage caused by Varroa mites has been shown to vary according to the region studied. In Brazil and other parts of the world, where bees of African origin and their hybrids predominate, a perfect relationship exists between the parasite and its host.

However, it is unknown whether the severity of the effects caused by the Varroa parasite depends on the genotype of the bees and/or on the genotype of the mite. Evidence suggests that the mite V. destructor is a complex species. Studies have shown a correlation between the various genotypes of the mite and its fertility in different geographical regions.

Worldwide differences in the infestation of A. mellifera bees with the mite V. destructor suggest a correlation between some genotypes and a higher or lower virulence of the mite.

The fertility of Varroa mites in Brazil has increased to European levels. In 1986-1987, only 35% of the varroa females that invaded worker broods had left at the least one viable descendant, compared to 72% in 2005-2006 (Carneiro et al., 2007).

Genetics and Molecular Research 9 (1): 303-308 (2010) RAPD identification of Varroa destructor genotypes
 

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I recollect reading somewhere that the Lusby bees were almost certainly africanized which might account, to some extent, for their apparent varroa resistance.

P F
 

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I did read about the Lusby's succeses out in arizona though and they seem genuine people.

That is very strange when Lusby says that his queens have free mating and Arizoca is occupaid with Africanized bee.

Evil voices say that Lusbys bees are tamed Africans.

However mcb, read what they say about feral bees in NZ, South Africa, UK, Finland, USA.

The Russian bee has lived the longest time with varroa and it is at all tolerable to varroa when We look it according economic beekeeping industry.


So, why US guyes went to Siberia to get varroa tolerant bee genes if they had them in Arizora. Why you cannot bye in USA varroa tolerant Arizona queens? Or do you?

In Siberia official foundation cell size is 5,6 mm. Why?

.
 

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