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Something Weird in Drone Cells

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HighlandWozza 

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Hiya - newbeek here with first question of many!

I inspected my new hives today. Still trying to figure out what's what. I opened up some drone brood and found larvae - some with varroa. However, I saw something that worried me. Some of the cells contained a weird white hard substance. I pulled one out and it was like...well... like a small and old bird poo! Smooth, oblong, white, hard and crumbly. There were a number of these in the drone cells but I also found some in the worker brood.

Any ideas? Thanks in advance.
 

MuswellMetro 

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Hiya - newbeek here with first question of many!

I inspected my new hives today. Still trying to figure out what's what. I opened up some drone brood and found larvae - some with varroa. However, I saw something that worried me. Some of the cells contained a weird white hard substance. I pulled one out and it was like...well... like a small and old bird poo! Smooth, oblong, white, hard and crumbly. There were a number of these in the drone cells but I also found some in the worker brood.

Any ideas? Thanks in advance.
welcome to the forum

what you are seeing is problalbley chalk brood, you may find them on the floor of the hive. it is a fungus and kill the brood

if it gets bad, you might need to re queen. can you get a photo but first increase the ventalation

whats the source of the hive, is it a five frame nuc into a stadard or an old full hive?, number of brood frame, stores, age of queen(/marked colour)
 
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HighlandWozza 

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Hi MM,

Thanks for the quick reply. The beggining of this hive was a weird state of affairs. I was given a nuc by a friend but we reckoned after about three weeks that it was queenless. At the same time my father had to have some work done on his roof, which involved me removing a wild bee colony. I nicked about four or five frames worth of comb with brood from the roof colony and elastic banded it into frames in the queenless hive, in the hope that they would raise a queen, which they have done.

The bees in that hive are small, stripey and pretty defensive.

Is chalk brood a widespead problem? Is this something I should be very concerned about?

Edit: I reckon the queen is only a few weeks old. The colony is now in a new national hive (but obviously the frames came from an old hive and the comb from the roof could have brought in something nasty....)
 
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MuswellMetro 

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Hi MM,

Thanks for the quick reply. The beggining of this hive was a weird state of affairs. I was given a nuc by a friend but we reckoned after about three weeks that it was queenless. At the same time my father had to have some work done on his roof, which involved me removing a wild bee colony. I nicked about four or five frames worth of comb with brood from the roof colony and elastic banded it into frames in the queenless hive, in the hope that they would raise a queen, which they have done.

The bees in that hive are small, stripey and pretty defensive.

Is chalk brood a widespead problem? Is this something I should be very concerned about?
It quite common, and either due to a genetic trate in the queen or bad venetalation ( high Co2) you can live with it, unless it gets out of hand, tends to be more prevelent in damp springs

PS change your profile to show your nearest town not just UK, it does help us...i have hive in London...94F sunny, while the highlands have had torrential rain as 65c...that effects Bees

suggest you migrate out the wid comb after hatching and settle it down to see what happens. Open mesh varroa floors have seen a drop in the amount..dont be tooconcnenred yet, just monitr it and keep records. then tell us what you find in a few weeks. the white mummies are remove by the house cleaner bees, so you will find them on the floor and oustide
 
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gavin 

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Chalkbrood seems to have been rife here (Perthshire) in the last few years, particularly last year. It is always around so don't worry about it, although if it is infecting lots of brood then feeding, improving ventilation, re-queening and replacing comb in the spring all help.

Gavin
 

Bcrazy 

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Hi HighlandWozza
As mentioned Chalk Brood is a common occurence and it has also been mentioned about treatment, if you have any questions just fire away, also you have an experienced beekeeper in your neck of the woods in Gavin. Pick his brains as he is a very informative and knowledgeable beekeeper.
Welcome to the mad house.

Mo:redface:
 

MuswellMetro 

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which i why its always good to put a better location rthan just UK...here in the sunny south, we hve no idea that chalk brood is such a problem in Gavins/your area...whereever perthshire is :auto: leaving fast before i get claymore in the head
 

Hivemaker. 

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Thymol treatments and especially in any syrup feed will help reduce chalk brood.
 

oliver90owner 

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Don't you need to be careful with thymol if you are collecting honey from supers?

Are there really any treatments that you don't need to be careful with, if collecting honey from supers?

RAB
 

Silly Bee 

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Don't you need to be careful with thymol if you are collecting honey from supers?

Are there really any treatments that you don't need to be careful with, if collecting honey from supers?

RAB


OK, I was specifically told not to use thymol if you have a super on.
 

winmag270 

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not saying anymore in case SWMBO reads this... ;o)
OK, I was specifically told not to use thymol if you have a super on.
Thymol should only be used if / when a honey crop has been harvested from a hive OR at other times ONLY if the honey is to be left on the hive as winter stores.....

Greetings from Lichfield btw!

Do you attend the SS&DBKA meetings at Shug?
 

winmag270 

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not saying anymore in case SWMBO reads this... ;o)
thought so, but I'm lousy at putting names to faces, etc....

bit of advise if you go and buy any kit from the guy over near the Staff's County Showground, lovely guy, very helpful, but his collie goes on a "hump your leg" frenzie if you turn your back :eek:

I nipped over after the meeting yesterday and was glad i'd not changed out of my wellies!!
 

Silly Bee 

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thought so, but I'm lousy at putting names to faces, etc....

bit of advise if you go and buy any kit from the guy over near the Staff's County Showground, lovely guy, very helpful, but his collie goes on a "hump your leg" frenzie if you turn your back :eek:

I nipped over after the meeting yesterday and was glad i'd not changed out of my wellies!!
Hahahaha. I know.

I'm Georeg btw, who are you?
 

winmag270 

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not saying anymore in case SWMBO reads this... ;o)
Wish Neil had warned me about that...!!

I'm Alan, recently moved to the area, wear dodgy purple gloves, if that helps!
 

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