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Author Topic: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost  (Read 1355 times)

Offline Lesgold

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Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« on: October 28, 2022, 09:41:11 pm »
Hi folks just thought I?d start the conversation in relation to small hive beetles feeding and breeding in compost bins or worm farms. I have had large numbers over the years breeding in my worm farms. This was a real concern and it was potentially a disaster waiting to happen. The problem started when I was feeding the worms large quantities of fruit and vegetables. The beetles loved the environment and bred at a rapid rate. Have any of you encountered this situation? I thought for awhile that the worm farms would have to go but a simple change in the diet solved the problem. I now feed the worms on horse manure, coffee grounds and wood chips. The beetle problem is now just confined to the bees.

Cheers

Les

Offline Ben Framed

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #1 on: October 28, 2022, 10:57:43 pm »
Les I have heard that SHB 'love' decaying fruit. I have a question. Did the presence of SHB in your worm farm cause problems for the worms?

Phillip


« Last Edit: October 28, 2022, 11:18:05 pm by Ben Framed »
Jeremiah 5:21 King James Version 
Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:
2 Chronicles 7:14
14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Offline Lesgold

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #2 on: October 29, 2022, 03:51:08 am »
No problems for the worms. They just seemed to help break down the fruit. My issue was the huge number of beetles in the bins.

Offline Jim134

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #3 on: October 29, 2022, 05:39:40 am »
SHB love Cantaloupe and Watermelon.. That is half rotten.. Small high beetles do not need honeybees to survive.. The 1st SHB I  Ever seen.. Was in a grocery store.. On a Cantaloupe.. Maybe about 20 years ago... In Massachusetts..


        BEE HAPPY  Jim134  😊
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Offline Acebird

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #4 on: October 29, 2022, 08:40:02 am »
Could be another avenue how small hive beetle got north.  Maybe not just from southern hives.
Brian Cardinal
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Offline Ben Framed

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #5 on: October 29, 2022, 02:45:56 pm »
You might be right Brian, and if so, it might also be an avenue aiding their spread all over the world. 🤷🏼‍♂️

Phillip
Jeremiah 5:21 King James Version 
Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:
2 Chronicles 7:14
14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Offline Jim134

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #6 on: October 31, 2022, 02:35:09 am »
    You have 2 major crops in New England... Where Commercial Beekeepers coming to.  Blueberries in Maine And also cranberries... In Massachusett. This takes thousands of hives to do these 2 crops.
 This has been going on for about 35 years... I personally don't see nothing new about it.. As well as there are many nuc's colonies . As well as package bees..Come from the South..

     


        BEE HAPPY  Jim134  😊
"Tell me and I'll forget,show me and I may  remember,involve me and I'll understand"
        Chinese Proverb

"The farmer is the only man in our economy who buys everything at retail, sells everything at wholesale, and pays the freight both ways."
 John F. Kennedy
Franklin County Beekeepers Association MA. http://www.franklinmabeekeepers.org/

Offline Ben Framed

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #7 on: October 31, 2022, 06:24:02 am »
Thanks Jim, I love blueberries. Blueberries plain, blueberry pancakes, blueberry pie, blueberries mixed with strawberries and whip cream etc.  lol...

Phillip
Jeremiah 5:21 King James Version 
Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:
2 Chronicles 7:14
14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Offline Ben Framed

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #8 on: October 31, 2022, 06:28:20 am »
No problems for the worms. They just seemed to help break down the fruit. My issue was the huge number of beetles in the bins.

I can understand that issue being a problem since you are a beekeeper. Good to know no effect on the worm end of it. Before I kept bees there was a lady who raised McCall birds as well as other exotic birds within a couple miles of my home. She fed a lot of fruit to the birds! She had a special place for compost and decaying fruit was a major ingredient as her birds ate a lot of fruit. I bet she had tons of SHB...

Phillip
Jeremiah 5:21 King James Version 
Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:
2 Chronicles 7:14
14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Offline Lesgold

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #9 on: October 31, 2022, 04:58:01 pm »
I fed my worm farms yesterday. Not a single hive beetle. They obviously don?t like coffee grounds.

Offline Jim134

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #10 on: October 31, 2022, 10:10:19 pm »
SHB  Do you like beehives better.. From what I understand.. Beatles can smell Honey or nectar. Is from 2 miles away.. Beatles can easily fly Is 5 to 7 miles..  Just remember Bee hives. Make life easier for small hive beetles

               BEE HAPPY  Jim134  😊
             
"Tell me and I'll forget,show me and I may  remember,involve me and I'll understand"
        Chinese Proverb

"The farmer is the only man in our economy who buys everything at retail, sells everything at wholesale, and pays the freight both ways."
 John F. Kennedy
Franklin County Beekeepers Association MA. http://www.franklinmabeekeepers.org/

Offline Ben Framed

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #11 on: November 01, 2022, 08:16:04 am »
Quote
Jim 134
 From what I understand.. Beatles can smell Honey or nectar. Is from 2 miles away.. Beatles can easily fly Is 5 to 7 miles..

This is my understanding also Jim.
Jeremiah 5:21 King James Version 
Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:
2 Chronicles 7:14
14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Offline Ben Framed

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #12 on: November 01, 2022, 08:17:06 am »
Good to hear the coffee grounds are working Les. Have you noticed other things that your worms like in particular?
The reason I ask is when I was a kid we loved to go fishing. We did not have a worm bed as such, but we did have a place where we deposited the yearly leaf drop. (mostly oak) This pile of decaying leaves could always be counted on as the earth worm 'honey hole'. The worms were huge there. We in the South call them Night Crawlers... 

Phillip
Jeremiah 5:21 King James Version 
Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:
2 Chronicles 7:14
14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Offline Lesgold

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #13 on: November 01, 2022, 05:01:02 pm »
Hi Phillip. The worms also like horse manure. I try to add this every couple of weeks in conjunction with wood chips which keeps the compost aerated. The worms have a preference for fruit and vegetables and do much better with a varied diet. Unfortunately the fruit creates the SHB problem so i no longer add it. Since moving away from fruit and vegetables, the work required to maintain the farms has decreased which is something I enjoy.

Offline Ben Framed

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #14 on: November 01, 2022, 05:12:34 pm »
Thanks Les..  Do you add fresh horse manure or aged? I would think fresh?

Phillip
Jeremiah 5:21 King James Version 
Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:
2 Chronicles 7:14
14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Offline Lesgold

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #15 on: November 02, 2022, 03:54:40 am »
Yes, it?s normally fresh. I can get it from the local race track. I normally leave it a couple of weeks before using it just in case the horses were wormed.

Offline The15thMember

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Re: Small hive beetle in worm farms/ compost
« Reply #16 on: November 02, 2022, 12:42:44 pm »
Yes, it?s normally fresh. I can get it from the local race track. I normally leave it a couple of weeks before using it just in case the horses were wormed.
Oh cool!  When I was little we used to live close-ish to a horse track.  We'd go on Saturdays sometimes, and it was a blast!  My sister and I would take peppermints along to feed to the lead ponies when they were off-duty between races, and our parents would give us $2 per race to make bets with.     
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