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Bee Informed Partnership - Treatments that DON'T work.

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  • Bee Informed Partnership - Treatments that DON'T work.

    The following numbers are from selectively choosing backyard beekeepers for the last four years, unless otherwise stated.

    We know the idea behind treatments is that they work. However, looking through the BIP data, I've come across some that definitely don't.

    Drone Brood Removal, works for sideliners but no difference for anybody else. Weird huh?

    Screened Bottom Boards, works for backyard beekeepers but nobody else. Average worse for sideliners.

    Hops, no significant difference.

    FGMO, wide variation, no significant difference

    Miteathol, no significant difference

    Nozevit, average higher loss, no significant difference

    Powdered Sugar ~5% difference. In other words, on average, people who used powdered sugar lost more hives.

    Terramycin, no significant difference.

    Tylan, on average higher loss, but wide variation so no significant difference.

    Interesting that monitoring for mites has a higher average loss for backyarders, though no significant difference. So, if it doesn't help solve anything, and I'm not going to do anything about it, then why do it?
    100% Treatment-Free, 16 years.
    Medford, Oregon, USA

  • #2
    "Interesting that monitoring for mites has a higher average loss for backyarders, though no significant difference. So, if it doesn't help solve anything, and I'm not going to do anything about it, then why do it?"

    Solomon,
    Wouldn't monitoring mites levels help in determining what queens have potential to mother further queens to improve performance of future colonies?
    Neill Sayers
    Herbhome Farm
    Arkansas Ozarks, USA
    Zone 7a

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    • #3
      In my view, performance and gentleness are the only important factors. I have no interest in meddling in how they deal with mites. If they can make honey and be workable, I don't care if mites are spraying out the entrance.
      100% Treatment-Free, 16 years.
      Medford, Oregon, USA

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      • #4
        >Wouldn't monitoring mites levels help in determining what queens have potential to mother further queens to improve performance of future colonies?

        Would it?

        "And now I have another terrible confession to make. Not one as bad and un-American as passing up short-term gain and investing in the future—but still horrible: I have never yet counted even a single sample of mites from any of my bees. I consider counting mites as a way of evaluating Varroa resistance to be fraught with all sorts of shortcomings and difficulties. It's very time consuming and hence the size of the apiary, the number of colonies tested, the gene pool, and the income available all start to shrink. It's also very easy for the results to be skewed by mites migrating from other colonies or bee yards. And it doesn't show which colonies are more resistant to secondary infections--a trait I consider very important."--Kirk Webster, ABJ April 2005, pg 314
        http://kirkwebster.com/index.php/wha...-good-progress


        "We're trying to ensure the failure of modern beekeeping by focusing too much on single traits; by ignoring the elements of Wildness; and by constantly treating the bees. The biggest mistake of all is to continue viewing mites and other "pests" as enemies that must be destroyed, instead of allies and teachers that are trying to show us a path to a better future. The more virulent a parasite is, the more powerful a tool it can be for improving stocks and practice in the future. All the boring and soul-destroying work of counting mites on sticky boards, killing brood with liquid nitrogen, watching bees groom each other, and measuring brood hormone levels---all done in thousands of replications---will someday be seen as a colossal waste of time when we finally learn to let the Varroa mites do these things for us. My own methods of propagating, selecting and breeding bees, worked out through many years of trial and error, are really just an attempt to establish and utilize Horizontal breeding with honeybees---to create a productive system that preserves and enhances the elements of Wildness. My results are not perfect, but they have enabled me to continue making a living from bees without much stress, and have a positive outlook for the future. I have no doubt that many other beekeepers could easily achieve these same results, and then surpass them."--Kirk Webster, What's missing from the current discussion and work related to bees that's preventing us from making good progress.
        http://kirkwebster.com/index.php/a-n...can-beekeepers

        "Bees that combine genuine hardiness, mite-resistance and productivity can only be maintained in the long run by having many hundreds of colonies constantly exposed to mites—and all the other known and unknown stresses in the real world, commercial beekeeping environment. This is the only way the bees can be tested for all the characteristics they need in order to thrive. And this testing and selection must continue year after year—to keep building up their resilience, and help the bees adapt to a changing world."—Kirk Webster

        Nehawka, Nebraska. My website: bushfarms.com/bees.htm en espanol: bushfarms.com/es_bees.htm auf deutsche: bushfarms.com/de_bees.htm em portugues: bushfarms.com/pt_bees.htm My book: ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
        -----"Everything works if you let it."--James "Big Boy" Medlin-----

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        • #5
          i have used powdered sugar to bake something and the first thing you notice...if your not careful opening the package,is the dust ,if you get a good breath of it ,you might be coughing a long time...now imagine a poor bee totally covered with the stuff head to foot and clogging its trachea ,much worse than any mite infection i would imagine...when people on youtube talk about their vapors and dusts and poisons ,i think of what does that do to the bee,better to have a beast on your back at least you can breathe .

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