Cedar chips for mite control?

Discussion in 'Beekeeping 101' started by hlhart2001, Sep 11, 2012.

  1. hlhart2001

    hlhart2001 New Member

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  2. Omie

    Omie New Member

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    Cedar is an insect and moth repellent. Moths and bees are insects. I wouldn't think bee would like having cedar in their hive. But maybe others know better!
    My friend bought cedar chips to use in her smoker. I didn't know that and I came over to help her inspect her bees because she asked me to. The smoke that came out of that smoker was NASTY- awful smelling and potent smoke, and the bees were ROARING angry when we puffed them, like we were killing them. I was horrified at their reaction and asked her what the heck was in the smoker and she told me 'just all natural cedar chips!'. She had them all spread around the hive on the ground too.
    When we saw the effects of that cedar smoke she got rid of all those chips and switched to pine chips. No more problems.
     

  3. Dbure

    Dbure New Member

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    Hi Mlhart2001. What Omie said makes sense about smoking, but after watching the video it sounded as if using cedar shavings above the hive is common practice where the woman lives. I wonder if smoking with chips has a different effect than cedar around the bees in it's raw state because I had someone once tell me that he knew of a hive located in a hole in a cedar tree in my area. I am located in northeast Texas so would have eastern red cedar here. Hive boxes made of cedar I think are made with western red cedar which I know is different from the eastern. That too may be something to take into consideration.
     
  4. Barbarian

    Barbarian New Member

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    For info

    In the UK, hives are sold made from Western Red Cedar or Pine.

    Cedar hives contain their own preservative oil and do not need painting or preserving. They are also lightweight. Disadvantages ---- it's a 'soft' wood and more expensive.
     
  5. Daniel Y

    Daniel Y New Member

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    Western Red Cedar and Aromatic Cedar are not the same thing. Western Red is what is used in fencing material and other construction applications. Long lasting weather resistant etc. Aromatic Cedar is what chests. humidors etc are made of and is also the stuff that repels moths.

    So just be careful when someone says they use cedar that you are both thinking of the same thing,
     
  6. ablanton

    ablanton New Member

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    I have a hive made from Eastern Red Cedar and my bees are quite happy.
     
  7. Gypsi

    Gypsi Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I heard a speaker suggest cedar chips
    In smoker on Monday. Rodent.bedding
    Type. Haven't switched yet.
    T'lee Sollenberger was the speaker.
     
  8. riverbee

    riverbee Active Member

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    hlhart:
    "Found this on youtube...from a beekeeper in Michigan..using chips for mite control? Has anyone ever tried this?"

    cedar chips will not control mites hlhart...if this were true, every beekeeper on the planet would be using this material and our mite problem would be solved. the best use of cedar chips is for your smoker......:grin:

    with regards to some discussion here, cedar chips in a smoker....i do use cedar chip bedding in my smoker as a matter of convenience, and also dried sage plants i harvest from montana with no ill effects to the bees. they both have a sweet smell, sage, my favorite, and burn cool in a smoker. as far as hive bodies are concerned, cedar is great to use, but as barbarian pointed out, it is a soft wood, and expensive.

    if you have concerns about mites, please post back, but cedar chips are not going to help you or your bees with this pest.
     
  9. Daniel Y

    Daniel Y New Member

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    Riverbee, I see a small hole in your logic."if this were true, every beekeeper on the planet would be using this material and our mite problem would be solved". if such a comment where true than whatever beekeepers are using as I assert that in fact they are using something to "Control" mites. Then likewise they would not have mites and there would be no problem. It is a simple correction in that "Control" is not "Cure".

    Do be careful about discounting what you do not yet know. The cure has not yet been found. when it is will you be willing to implement it? If only when it has been proven, and everyone has that opinion. then how will it ever be proven? That is the danger of saying that anything that has never been done before will not work. You don't know what you don't know.

    What we can all know without question. Is that it is not known how to get rid of mites. Not yet anyway. So we cannot say with any certainty that any one thing will not work. Unless of course it has been proven to be ineffective. We do know a lot about what does not work. I believe those frames of mind are critical to eventually finding the answers. We don't know, need to live and act like we don't know and always wonder what if. You may disagree that placing pieces of shredded cardboard on the bottom board of your hives will eliminate mites. I woudl even tend to agree you are likely to be correct. But I will not believe it until someone proves it doesn't work.

    To me untested conjuncture is more dangerous than uneducated opinion.

    One direction I do not see explored is. What is the predator of the mite? Can it be used to eleminate them fromt eh hive with no harm to the bees or the products of the hive?
     
  10. riverbee

    riverbee Active Member

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    a few daniel quips:
    " I see a small hole in your logic."if this were true, every beekeeper on the planet would be using this material and our mite problem would be solved". if such a comment where true than whatever beekeepers are using as I assert that in fact they are using something to "Control" mites. Then likewise they would not have mites and there would be no problem. It is a simple correction in that "Control" is not "Cure"."

    "Do be careful about discounting what you do not yet know."

    'So we cannot say with any certainty that any one thing will not work. Unless of course it has been proven to be ineffective."

    "You may disagree that placing pieces of shredded cardboard on the bottom board of your hives will eliminate mites. I woudl even tend to agree you are likely to be correct."
    .................
    .riverbee: not sure about the mites, but you will most likely have provided your hives a nice nesting area for mice.

    "To me untested conjuncture is more dangerous than uneducated opinion."

    daniel, my statement was not of 'logic', and i will choose not to debate 'control' or 'cure' with you or anyone else. i also typically do not speak from 'conjecture',
    'what i do not yet know' or an 'uneducated opinion'. (? i find this somewhat offensive). when it comes to keeping bees, i speak from my educated experience, and new keeps coming to this forum are looking for straightforward advice of the beekeepers who have been there, done that, and not for their 'conjecture' or 'uneducated opinion'.

    cedar chips and other materials have long been used by keeps long before me as a wintering material placed in a box over the hive to absorb moisture, etc. if a colony has a mite problem, or is infested with mites going into fall, left untreated, that colony will most likely die and what you will have is a dead box of bees and a hive that smells like cedar chips. if one is unfamiliar with the life cycle of the mite, and how this affects your colony, educate yourself, ask questions so that an informed decision can be made as to what is helpful and what is not.

    hlhart asked a straightforward question, i gave a straightforward answer based on my experience, someone may have a different experience. i am also somewhat amazed at what new keeps are often told to buy or try when they are first starting out, and all sorts of new fangled tools, thing a majiggys, and what nots on the market. i am an old fashioned keep who was mentored by a keep who kept bees for 50 years, so am not quick to jump on a band wagon, however i do have and keep an open mind.

    if one thinks that cedar chips will help, by all means give it a whirl, and if you believe it works and helps you, that is all that matters, irregardless of anyone else's opionion.
     
  11. Dbure

    Dbure New Member

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    Ablanton, that is good to know because I had wondered if it made any difference. Since hearing that a beehive is living inside an eastern red cedar tree in my area I kind of thought it must not matter or the bees would not have taken up residence in it. However, I could not say if there is a difference in the smoke between each kind of cedar. It would be easy enough to find out I suppose, and easy enough to discontinue if it looks like the bees are irritated by it.
     
  12. Omie

    Omie New Member

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    See above for the disastrous experience my friend had using cedar chips in her smoker. !
     
  13. riverbee

    riverbee Active Member

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    well, below for me omie :lol:
    yes i read your post and was puzzled by this? i use the cedar bedding type, or pine, and can say i have not had the experience you and your keep friend did :confused:
     
  14. Omie

    Omie New Member

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    Well she used cedar chips in the form of landscape mulch, not animal bedding, so who knows? I'll never forget that strong nasty smoke!
    Best is to proceed with caution I guess?
     
  15. Crofter

    Crofter New Member

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    I think there could be an explanation for the different experience with the same (supposedly) item. Landscape mulch is sometimes deliberately treated with herbicides termite chemicals, and often casually contaminated with tramp pressure treated wood.
     
  16. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    :shock: :shock: :shock:
     
  17. riverbee

    riverbee Active Member

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    omie said:
    "Well she used cedar chips in the form of landscape mulch, not animal bedding, so who knows? I'll never forget that strong nasty smoke!
    Best is to proceed with caution I guess?
    "

    oops! :lol:
    what frank said omie, would explain your excellent description from your earlier post:
    "The smoke that came out of that smoker was NASTY- awful smelling and potent smoke, and the bees were ROARING angry when we puffed them, like we were killing them."

    the cedar bedding type chips smell nice, burn cool, not awful or potent.....:grin: