I am beginning to see quite a few of these bees on the ground around the hive with missing wings? See pictures. The population in the hive is good and they are strong. I am seeing about 10 to 15 a day.
Pictures are a little fuzzy but looks like there are severely deformed wings - in which case you should do a mite count and treat ASAP.
You have DWV (deformed wing virus) = severe Varroa infestation. Most hives with obvious DWV will not survive more than 6 months if left untreated. Time to get yourself a treatment plan!
Ok sounds like I have some work cut out. I have tested and only had the minimal number of mites at last check. I have Hopguard that I placed in the hive for 5 weeks too.
Good luck Jeremiah, we look forward to hearing how you go.
So did an alcohol wash today. Around 200 bees, and got 1 mite. I will treat the hive with hop guard for the next 5 weeks and see how it goes.
Going to do another wash in the am.
Edit: I sat and watched the hive entrance and did not find any more clipped wing bees. The ones I saw were over the course of two days.
Very glad that you are treating. Is it Hopguard, or Hopguard II? I think the second one is meant to be more effective.
Thank you for the update
I use the hopguard 2.
Is it very common to see bees walking or running around on the ground. There are bees up to 5 feet from the hive just cruising around on the ground. Most look healthy too. I am watching one bee carry another in the dirt.
Update: did another test today from the lower brood middle frame. I wanted to get a better representation than my initial test. So for 200 bees I got 19 mites this time. Treatment is two hopguard sticks one on each 2 nd frame on either side in both boxes. I will let that sit for about 5 weeks. I am also continuing to feed with protein patties and syrup.
Any other advise?
That is very high. Well done for repeating it! I would finish the Hopguard II treatment, then consider oxalic acid sponges. In our climate, they seem to work extremely well and might just help to save your colony.
Not normal, but it is common in Varroa/DWV affected hives. You have done the right thing by doing a second count. Very proud of you, well done for caring so much about your bees!
Dawn, would this give the OA enough time to circulate with fall approaching in my climate? The guidance on the sponge method is not complete yet, but I’m under the impression that they are more of a slow-release treatment. I’m curious because I recently advised another beek in my area to do a dribble (she doesn’t want to vape) for a faster result at this time of year.
Dribbles are great when your colony is brood-less and clustered. Otherwise, not so much. If there is still brood, I would do the sponges, unless it is very humid and hot.
To answer your question, I think the sponges have enough time until the end of September. Best effect is about 40 days IIRC on Randy’s research.
Concern here would be the heat, but if I go 5 weeks before treating with sponges who knows what the temp will be. Been hot here in Davis in the afternoons.
Bees are looking good from the outside. Going to inspect the hive tomorrow.
Ok took another sample from the lower brood box. No change, still 20 mites per 200 bees.
I also think I may be queen less. I had a frame fall out while inspecting and decided it was a good opportunity to inspect the comb up close to see if there is any sign of the queen. I have not found her the last two times I have checked.
Upon inspecting the comb the chambers are all full of pollen. No brood and this was the third frame over in the lower box. Should have larvae. I did see some bees hatching today but no signs of new larvae.
Check the pics and let me know what you think.
Bump for any thoughts?