Symptomatic of Nosema?

Discussion in 'Beekeeping 101' started by Larus, Feb 15, 2012.

  1. Larus

    Larus New Member

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    I checked up on my bees today and added sugar and a pollen patty. My bees are alive and consuming dry sugar and pollen substitute, but I am starting to get worried about the amount of poop on the front wall of the hive:

    [attachment=0:13x26ffw]IMG_0127.JPG[/attachment:13x26ffw]

    Is this symptomatic of nosema, or is it just the result of 3 months worth of cleansing sorties by the bees on a white background?
    If it is nosema, is there anything I can do to help the bees right now? I do have an entrance feeder on this hive, because the daytime temperatures have been going into the 40s sometimes, and it looks like they have consumed about a pint of that syrup in the past 10 days. Still, February is not over yet, nighttime temperatures are consistently below freezing, and the bees in that hive are clustered in the top box (that's why I am still feeding them dry sugar). Would it help to refill that jar with Fumagillin - laced syrup, or is it too cold for that?

    Other than antibiotic treatment, are there any other ways to help bees overcome a nosema infection?

    Thanks very much.
     

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  2. Dbure

    Dbure New Member

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    Hi Larus. I noticed you have an upper entrance on the hive but I don't see one at the bottom. Is it just hidden by the feeder? From seeing where you are located I would have thought you'd have snow, but it seems winter is hard to find these days.

    The streaks look like cleansing, but I wouldn't think it would hurt to treat them for nosema just in case. I tend to see this on my hives after they get cooped up for several days of cold weather.
     

  3. Larus

    Larus New Member

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    Our local Wisconsin groundhog saw his shadow and thus we got an early spring. The snow all melted.

    I have an entrance reducer on the hive, with the wider opening, but most of that opening is taken up by the feeder. There's still enough space next to the feeder for a bee to get in or out.
    On the back of the bottom box there's also a 1"-wide hole, covered by #4 hardware cloth. So, bees could get out through that, if they really wanted to. Right now, though, they are all in the top box, and using the upper entrance.

    Thanks for the assessment of the streaks.
     
  4. jb63

    jb63 New Member

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    Get your hands on a micro-scope.
     
  5. Bens-Bees

    Bens-Bees New Member

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    It's pretty normal for springtime, though it is also indicative of Nosema apis... but not a very serious case of it... just a very normal winter load. It should clear up on it's own in the spring.

    Yes, you can add fumidil B to the syrup you're feeding them, but the question you should be asking is if you NEED to do anything to help the bees, and the answer to that is no.

    Warm spring weather... but unless you're on better terms with God than I am, the best you can do is pray for that.
     
  6. Marbees

    Marbees Member

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    Instead of antibiotics you may try this liquid feed which is also good spring treatment for mites.
    Works with nosema too. Mix ingredients together, and on sunny day, above 5C, spray your bees with it.
    Cleaning themselves, bees will ingest it.
    This recipe was posted on another forum by gentleman called Alpha6, and it's confirmed effective by some beekeepers from UK. Good luck :thumbsup:

    1 Quart of Water
    1 Quart of Sugar
    16 drops of thyme oil
    30 drops of lemongrass oil
    30 drops of spearmint oil
    2 teaspoons of Soy Lecithin Granules


    In a mixing bowl or similar item add one quart of hot but not boiling water. Mix in 2 teaspoons of Lecithin granules. Mix with a beater or till all of the granules are dissolved. Add your thyme, lemongrass and spearmint oils and again mix with the beater. Measure out one quart of sugar and pour it in your hot water/oil mix and stir well.
     
  7. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    just as something to consider Larus..

    years ago when nosema apis came to the fore front of problems associated with bees as thing worked out doing any clinical trials of nosema apis was very difficult to pull off. it seems that nosema apis (even when hives were actively dosed with the disease) would clean themselves up with the first spring time nectar flow (and thereby foil the intention of the research folks).

    fumidillian to my understanding is not really an antibiotic treatment (not trying to split hairs here either) but simply modifies the chemistry in the bees gut so that nosema apis does not thrive and spread.
     
  8. Jacobs

    Jacobs New Member

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    I'm seeing a lot more bee poop on the outside of my hives than in prior years. We have had a very mild winter and, unlike last year, I have never stopped putting out exterior jar feeders of sugar water. Any day that is sunny and 42°F has bees waiting for me if I have not put the jars in place. When the sun angle is right, I can see an impressive bombing pattern as the bees return from the jars to the hives. As brood has been building and orientation flights are getting larger, I am sure more bees are letting go when they have been confined a day or two by rain or a cold snap.

    Yesterday afternoon was sunny and 60°F+ so I did inspections and pollen patty feedings on my home hives. I saw no signs of nosema apis (bee poop) on the insides of any of the hives.
     
  9. barry42001

    barry42001 New Member

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    You will see more " bee poop" as the larger portion of the colony takes their cleansing flights, and become more active( metabolism accelerates, and everything else speeds up ), didn't see anything that seems overly alarming lol park your car near them and see the wondrously creative patterns that the bees generate lol
     
  10. Larus

    Larus New Member

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    Thanks, everyone. This is only my 9th month as a beekeeper (counting from the package installation last May). I've had more than my fair share of beginner's luck, and it seems to be continuing (knocking on wood). Good to know the situation is normal for this time of year.

    Marbees, I think the ingredients you mentioned (lemongrass oil, spearmint oil and soy lecithin) are the ingredients in Honey-B-Healthy. I add HBH to every batch of syrup that I cook for my bees, including the one in the jar right now. So, maybe it will give them an immunity boost.
     
  11. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    a snip..
    This is only my 9th month as a beekeeper (counting from the package installation last May). I've had more than my fair share of beginner's luck

    tecumseh:
    how did the old saw go??? luck favors the well prepared.