Varroa board interpretation

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Mothman

New Bee
Joined
May 13, 2011
Messages
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Location
Northamptonshire
Hive Type
National
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2
Is there a website/page or a book or a thread here that can tell you what all the things are or help you identify all the bits that have fallen on to the Varroa board along with any varroa?
 
Why not post a photo on here? Someone will identify all the bits and pieces.
Cazza
 
Varroa
Cappings
The ones that look like contact lenses are wax scales
Dropped pollen
Lots of little things that eat debris.


Did I miss anything? :)
 
Varroa
Cappings
The ones that look like contact lenses are wax scales
Dropped pollen
Lots of little things that eat debris.


Did I miss anything? :)

Bits of bee
Pollen mites

Mine seem to chew off shreds of wood off my home made frames as well, they drop down to the floor.
 
Add
dead moths
the occasional strange insect.
Slugs
ants (live).
 
Is there a website/page or a book or a thread here that can tell you what all the things are or help you identify all the bits that have fallen on to the Varroa board along with any varroa?

I dont know of any book or website but I do know its a good thing to start to read as it can tell you good information especially in the early months when its to cold to inspect but the bees are starting to get active.

Brood capping - best described as light to mid biscuit colour and deposited as fine granules on the tray. The light to mid colour can be dependent on the age of the comb light for new comb ect and from hive to hive but you can easily see the general colour of your brood cappings.

Honey capping - On the whole generally yellow to white but can be darker if from old brood frames again fine granules on the tray.

Wax scales – small flakes that catch the light and reflect similar to mother of pearl.

Bits of bees – Just that and perhaps from bees that have been dismembered by the bees after the beekeeper has squashed them and trapped then between frames.

Sometimes bits of reasonably developed bee larvae – Dont see this very often so dont know the reason but perhaps a varroa thing or chilled brood that the bees are not able to remove whole.

Chalk brood – Easy to look up but the pellets can fall through the mesh onto the tray.

Pollen

Wax moth larvae

Wax moth S**t, wood lice may also be responsible – about the same size of an egg but dark greay.

Varroa

Ants – They eat the varroa (thought I was doing pretty good until one day spotted an ant walking off with a varroa mite)

I have seen in the spring on old comb you can get dark deposits and darker than brood capping debris on the tray and this is the bees spring cleaning the old combs ready for the new season ahead. I would expect you would get this if you moved bees onto old combs during the season.

You could probably see plenty of other things but the above is generally what I look for when the mood takes me.

Its good to look at the tray try to read it and then see if what is happening in the hive follows your prediction. Watching the entrance is also good but far more information on the tray.
 
Last edited:
I dont know of any book or website but I do know its a good thing to start to read as it can tell you good information especially in the early months when its to cold to inspect but the bees are starting to get active.

Brood capping - best described as light to mid biscuit colour and deposited as fine granules on the tray. The light to mid colour can be dependent on the age of the comb light for new comb ect and from hive to hive but you can easily see the general colour of your brood cappings.

Honey capping - On the whole generally yellow to white but can be darker if from old brood frames again fine granules on the tray.

Wax scales – small flakes that catch the light and reflect similar to mother of pearl.

Bits of bees – Just that and perhaps from bees that have been dismembered by the bees after the beekeeper has squashed them and trapped then between frames.

Sometimes bits of reasonably developed bee larvae – Dont see this very often so dont know the reason but perhaps a varroa thing or chilled brood that the bees are not able to remove whole.

Chalk brood – Easy to look up but the pellets can fall through the mesh onto the tray.

Pollen

Wax moth larvae

Wax moth S**t, wood lice may also be responsible – about the same size of an egg but dark greay.

Varroa

Ants – They eat the varroa (thought I was doing pretty good until one day spotted an ant walking off with a varroa mite)

I have seen in the spring on old comb you can get dark deposits and darker than brood capping debris on the tray and this is the bees spring cleaning the old combs ready for the new season ahead. I would expect you would get this if you moved bees onto old combs during the season.

You could probably see plenty of other things but the above is generally what I look for when the mood takes me.

Its good to look at the tray try to read it and then see if what is happening in the hive follows your prediction. Watching the entrance is also good but far more information on the tray.

Excellent post Tom, well put - I watch my tray as well - you can see where they are and what they are building very easily by the lines of debris across the board.
 
Nice one Tom.

Cobwebby type 'trails' are from wax moth larvae living on the inspection board. Only likely if you leave the board in and don't clean it regularly.

Propolis is often small blobs of dark sticky tar like substance, sometimes looks similar to varroa - but squishy.
 
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