chalkbrood

Discussion in 'Pests and Diseases' started by Tyro, Aug 7, 2011.

  1. Tyro

    Tyro Member

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    We have had a TON of rain here all year. Our annual average is around 13"/year and we are already past that. Just over the last week we got nearly two inches.

    So - nearly every one of my hives (except the absolute strongest) have signs of chalkbrood (white, hard, mummified pupae on the bottom boards). Some are worse than others (maybe a couple dozen 'new' mummies after two weeks or so). When I came across the first couple, I thought that I would be needing to requeen. But after seeing the same pattern in nearly all of my hives, I am thinking that it is due to how wet it has been. If that is the case, is there any reason to think that this chalkbrood episode will sort itself out on its own, presumably when it gets drier?

    Thanks for any insights.

    Mike
     
  2. rast

    rast New Member

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    I'm probably not going to be much help, but. Chalkbrood is a fungal disease and seems like rainy weather brings it out down here if a hive is disposed to it. All carry it. Some are more disposed to it than others. Requeening with a young new queen will outlay it usually and keep the hive alive. That is why they used to say to requeen. I no longer make splits with the frames from hives that seem disposed to it. I think the comb carries it. Seems like good top ventilation helps a lot. I even tried the banana peels.
     

  3. Hobie

    Hobie New Member

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    Banana peels?

    I've got the same issue with the chalkbrood, after a soggy spring. Seems to have lessened in the recent hot weather, but not completely gone - perhaps the humidity is not helping?
     
  4. rast

    rast New Member

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    Banana peels. It was an Australian (I think) experiment that from all internet reports failed. Dave Miksa told me had used it with some success and to try it. I had went to him for a new queen for it and he told me to try that first. Laid the peels flat on top of the top frames skin side down. I also ventilated the hive cover (no inner cover) with a couple of match sticks. Something worked, that hive survived and it was pretty bad. I may try it again sometime. The bees did eat the banana off the peels, or toted it out the entrance.
     
  5. camero7

    camero7 Member

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    I peeled a banana and laid it on the top bars. Hive cleared up in about a week.
     
  6. Tyro

    Tyro Member

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    Got into the hives yesterday and it looks like the chalkbrood has cleared up (no mummies on the bottom boards), even in the most severely affected hive. The brood seems to be much better now - after about a week of dry weather.
     
  7. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    although we often time view a disease as a purely pathogen born illness (caused by this or that virus or bacteria) I suspect often time that these disease are a combination of pathogen + environmental factors that encourages the pathogen + inadequate or poor nutrition of the host (in this particular case bees).