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the myth ? of the mite bomb

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SiWolKe:

--- Quote from: blackforest beekeeper on January 10, 2019, 02:12:36 am ---My hives are two side by side. Entrances wide open all year long.
If one has a higher mite-count and the one on the side has lower, they don?t equal out over time. There is usually only a little drift, sometimes practically none. The entrances are about 2 inches apart.
The only time I get robbed hives is - as Ace said - "colonies" having a weak queen or none, which makes them a "non-colony".
The other oppurtunity for robber-bees is: sick bees.
Honey in the stores has nothing to do with robbing. Every hive has honey.

--- End quote ---

That?s interesting! That means the mites stay mostly in the hives as long as there is no crash?
How do you place the other ones? Or do you only have two in one place? In a row, most people say the bees drift into the outer ones.

Yes, I agree, the honey is not the cause to rob, it?s the colony defense that weakens which makes it a target.

blackforest beekeeper:
At the moment I have 16 pallets of 2 colonies each at a yard. They are often set-up in a row just with space to walk between (I like to work from the side).
Most nucs are side by side, next ot each other. Sometimes 18 in a row. Even for mating. A large colony will stay large, a small will stay small, even if side by side.
Mites: I would say there is some drift, but not a lot. Nothing I have to take action for, I would say.

Sometimes a real jump in mites will occur. But not necessarily in all! If I was at the place and just could look at them every day! I would see which ones were out robbing. Because I would say a mite bomb did go off somewhere and not all the colonies took part in robbing.

I once - at my hobbyist setup near the house (well, still a walk up a steep hill) - saw heavy flying going on. I thought there was a flow again. But next day bees were lazy again. A week or two later mite count was UP. And not in all....

SiWolKe:

--- Quote from: blackforest beekeeper on January 10, 2019, 03:03:18 am --- Because I would say a mite bomb did go off somewhere and not all the colonies took part in robbing.

I once - at my hobbyist setup near the house (well, still a walk up a steep hill) - saw heavy flying going on. I thought there was a flow again. But next day bees were lazy again. A week or two later mite count was UP. And not in all....

--- End quote ---

My first hive was treated in July 2014. 3 weeks later mite drop was 30 a day. they did not make it through winter.

I always scan the area to know how many beekeepers are around. So in January 2015 I found this neglected commercial nuc place. I think my bees robbed them, because I was inexperienced and they starved in august. A friend told me to feed and I did, but maybe too late. They robbed while feeding. When they died the stores were enormous. Mostly open nectar.

I called the bee inspector because the nucs had no adress on them. He told me it was someone who was too old to care for his bees anymore and just left them there. They took away the bees, 2 colonies were still alive. The others were devastated by wild pigs and woodpeckers.

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BeeMaster2:
SiWolKe,
You are really lucky to have found them. Commercial beeks place their hives in the forest all around me in the spring for the Gallberry bloom every year. I know where a few of them are but most are hidden. I once asked a big commercial Beek if one of the clusters of hives were his and his answer was; if you can see them from the road, they are not mine. He then added if I were to go up in an airplane during the spring flow, I would see thousands of hives all around my farm.
I do know that the year that none of the commercial beeks placed hives on the gallberry, I made a lot of honey.
Jim

SiWolKe:
I like to walk my dogs for hours, when I have time, crossing the countryside. I am isolated with my tf project by 2.5km, but this could change every day, so I have to check.
Google maps mostly is to late showing the hives.

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What you say, sawdstmakr, means there is not enough flow for so many bees? I wonder how many hives an area can take.
I have planted two flow fields for my bees 2018 and the bees produced much more honey despite a very good flow in the environement.
Plus, the fields are not sprayed and I want to see if the bees are more healthy. This could mean fewer winter losses.

The fields were 2x400qm on 11 hives.

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