Diseases of Honey Bees

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					Diseases of Honey Bees



              Presented
                 By

The Ohio State Beekeeper’s Association
                                 Diseases



•   Based upon date provided by the Ohio Department of Agriculture -- 2005
       Brood Disease

American
  foulbrood
                            Brood Disease

       Good healthy brood

American foulbrood

2005 Apiary Statistics
From ODA
Colonies Inspected 21,389
Number with AFB
                  388

That doesn’t seem like many but this is a
      serious disease spread very easily
      and at some time or other
      beekeepers will experience it.

American foulbrood
                      Brood Disease
      American foulbrood

Young larva ingest the bacterial spores
       when fed by nurse bees. The
    spores then germinate and begin
       to grow rapidly. Death to the
    larva usually occurs as the pupae
    stage is reached. Larva that die
     turn a coffee brown and begin to
          melt down into a gooey
    mass. Housecleaning bees then
     try to remove the dead larva and
           in the process become
      contaminated with the bacterial
             spores that are now
      dormant. The house bees then
      carry the spores to other bees,
      and the spores end up either in
    the honey stores or are fed again
    to new larva. Thus the disease is
      spread within the colony rather
                   rapidly.
                    Brood Disease
   American foulbrood

Robbing is one of the ways that
       American foulbrood is
    spread. Robbing bees will
  take back contaminated honey
   to their own hives which will
   result in larva being fed with
      spore laced honey. The
    disease will spread to many
   colonies within several miles
       from the infected hive.
 You should always check for
     American foulbrood when
   examining your hives. If you
    are able catch this disease
   early, further spread can be
             prevented.
                            Disease
   American foulbrood

The way to test for this disease is
    to place a thin stick, twig,
    straw into a cell with this
    coffee brown gluey
    substance. Stir and draw the
    thin stick out. If the gluey
    substance sticks and ropes, it
    is most likely AFB.
You can also take a sample of
    comb from this frame and
    have your bee inspector send
    it in for confirmation of AFB.
                       Disease

   American foulbrood
Treatment:
If diagnosed as AFB, the colony
      and bees can be treated in
      Ohio with Terramycin or
      Tylan. This must be used and
      consumed by the bees at least
      4 weeks prior to a honey crop.
      These only mask the disease.
      The spores are not killed and
      can re-infect the hive

The only sure way to get rid of it…
                                    Disease
        American foulbrood

Treatment:
Burn ……… This is the only way to
    effectively destroy the disease.
    Other chemical treatments only
    mask the symptoms and it can
    return at a later time.
However, this is a disease you must always realize is
     in your hives at some point in time– some bees
     have built up a resistance to AFB. If you burn
     and your neighbor doesn’t which is legal in Ohio
     if he treats with chemicals, have you gained
     anything by burning?
        Brood Disease

European
   foulbrood
                 Brood Disease
           Good healthy brood


European foulbrood

2005 Apiary Statistics
From ODA
Colonies Inspected 21,389
Number with AFB 13



European foulbrood
           Brood Disease
              European foulbrood
                     Cause
European foulbrood (EFB) is a brood disease of
        honeybees caused by the bacterium
      Melissococcus pluton.. Larvae are most
  susceptible to infection when they are less than
   48 hours old, and usually die while still in the
   coiled state. Poor nutrition and severe stress,
  for example insecticide poisoning, often cause
   this disease to break out. The larvae first turn
     yellow then brown in color. The disease is
   usually noticed in early spring, and to a lesser
                  extent in autumn.
             Brood Disease
               European foulbrood

               Multiplication and spread
The bacteria multiply vigorously in the gut of larval bees
     which have been given food contaminated with M.
   pluton.. As with American foulbrood, EFB can also be
                          spread by:
               bees robbing infected hives
transferring infected honey supers and combs to clean
                            hives
      using contaminated beekeeping equipment
           feeding infected honey and pollen.
              Brood Disease
               European foulbrood

Treatment: Good beekeeping hygiene will keep this
    disease in control, however, if a hive should be
    found with EFB it is important to prevent any
    robbing of the hive and frames from this hive
    should not be transferred to any other
    hive. Treatment with terramycin – A colony
    recovers rapidly. The effect of EFB is to reduce a
    colonies bee population and thus reduce a
    honey crop. Also consider requeening if the
    bees are not cleaning up the disease.
       Brood Disease

Chalkbrood
              Brood Disease
       Good healthy brood


Chalkbrood

2005 Apiary Statistics
From ODA
Colonies Inspected 21,389
Number with Chalkbrood 596



Chalkbrood
                 Brood Disease
                Chalkbrood
Identification: A fungal disease caused by
     Ascosphaera apis . It is now found
     throughout the United States. It is a
     disease of stress in the early spring to
     early summer. Severe cases can be
     found in the comb later in the
     year. Often the bees will try to remove
     the mummy larva -- it is called chalk
     brood because the mummies are chalk
     like in appearance and touch. These
     mummies can often be seen at the
     entrance of the hive.
            Brood Disease
                  Chalkbrood
Treatment: There is no chemical approved
   treatment for this disease. The best
   management plan would be to: strengthen a
   weak hive with more brood and bees,
   replace the queen (literature indicates that it
   might be genetic characteristic) with a
   queen of known hygienic behavior. To
   avoid spreading chalkbrood, you can avoid
   using pollen from a chalkbrood hive for
   supplemental feeding and avoid
   mixing frames of comb from a chalkbrood
   hive with other hives you may have.
    Insect pest in hives
• 2005 Apiary Statistics
• From ODA                           7000

• Colonies Inspected                 6000
                                     5000
  21,389                             4000                                Varroa
                                                                         Trach.
•   Varroa Mite 6,720 colonies       3000
                                                                         SHB
                                     2000
•   Tracheal Mite 41 colonies                                            Wax moth
                                     1000
•   Small Hive Beetle 539 colonies     0
•   Wax moth          n/a                   Varroa Trach.   SHB   Wax
                                                                  Moth
                  Insect pest in hives
Varroa Mites
2005 Apiary Statistics
From ODA
Colonies Inspected
   21,389

Varroa Mite 6,720 colonies
The greatest threat to all beekeepers
     in Ohio. It has been
     responsible for more
     beekeepers leaving the hobby
     than anything else. This is the
     honey bees # 1 enemy.
             Insect pest in hives
         Varroa Mites
Identification: This mite is
    known as varroa
    destructor. Varroa
    mites can be found in
    the United States
    except Hawaii. The
    mite is small but can
    be seen with the naked
    eye. Mites are about
    the size of a pin head
    and are reddish/brown
    in color.
               Insect pest in hives
                          Varroa Mites
They can be detected by several methods.
•    One is with varroa screens and a sticky board. Mites fall
    through the screen onto the sticky board where then can
    then be detected and counted to determine the
    infestation level.
•   The second method involves checking drone brood for
    mites.
•   The third method involves scooping up 100 or so bees
    and subjecting them to a sugar roll or ether roll test. The
    sugar roll test does not kill the bees and is
    preferred. The method is simple. Scoop up the bees
    into a pint jar, add powdered sugar (a tablespoon will do)
    and shake and roll the jar.
•   Varroa mites will drop off the bees to the bottom of the
    jar where they can be counted.
                Insect pest in hives
          Varroa Mites
They can be detected by several
    methods.
•    Most common is the sticky
    board test. A protective
    screen is placed over the
    sticky board and the sticky
    board is left in the hive for a
    period of 24 hours. The
    mites on the sticky board
    are then counted. A sticky
    board can be made easily by
    taking a sheet of wax paper
    and coating it with vegetable
    oil. Lay it on the bottom
    board and place screen over
    it. This will also detect
    chalk brood.
            Insect pest in hives
       Varroa Mites
They can be detected by
   several methods.
•   Second method
   involves checking
   drone brood for mites
   like shown in the
   picture. You can check
   individual capped
   drone cells -- use your
   hive tool or a cappings
   fork to remove pupa
   from the drone comb.
               Insect pest in hives
          Varroa Mites
They can be detected by several
    methods.
•    Third method involves
    scooping up 100 or so bees
    and subjecting them to a
    sugar roll or ether roll
    test. The sugar roll test
    does not kill the bees and is
    preferred. The method is
    simple. Scoop up the bees
    into a pint jar, add powdered
    sugar (a tablespoon will do)
    and shake and roll the
    jar. Varroa mites will drop
    off the bees to the
    bottom of the jar where they
    can be counted.
            Insect pest in hives
        Varroa Mites
They can be detected by
   several methods.
•   Remember that more
   than 85% of the mites
   in a colony are in
   capped brood cells and
   not visually detectable.
   If a bee inspector see
   one mite, he or she will
   indicate on inspection
   report that all hives in
   your bee yard are
   infected.
           Insect pest in hives
      Varroa Mites
Treatment:
I can not tell you
    exactly what will
    work. A number of
    products are
    available for the
    beekeeper. Some
    work at times and at
    other times have no
    apparent effect.
Insect pest in hives
      Varroa Mites
 Treatment:
 In general use:
 Apistan strips (10% fluvalinate)
 CheckMite+ (Coumaphos)
 Formic Acid
 Sucrocide
 Apiguard (Thymol)
 Powdered sugar
 Also no chemical means such as
      drone comb capture frames.

 Don’t ask me which is best!
                  Insect pest in hives
Tracheal Mites
2005 Apiary Statistics
From ODA
Colonies Inspected
   21,389

Tracheal Mite   41 colonies

Still a problem. Introduced in the
       mid 1880’s. A real problem in
       the early 1990’s in Ohio.
              Insect pest in hives
Tracheal Mites
Identification: This mite is
    named Acarapis woodi
    . It was first identified
    as the Isle of Wight
    Disease. This mite has
    become well
    established in the
    United States except
    Hawaii. These mites
    can be observed under
    a microscope. They
    are found in the
    tracheae of adult
    honey bees.
                  Insect pest in hives
Tracheal Mites
 Highly infested hives usually die in
     the fall or winter. One may
     find few bees in a dead
     hive. This is contrary to
     starvation when most of the
     bees will be on the face of the
     comb -- dead. Early detection
     is important. If the beekeeper
     notices a rapid decline in
     population, the situation is
     already out of hand.

Fortunately, breeding better queen
     bees with resistance to the
     tracheal mite has reduced the
     tracheal mite problem from
     what it was 10 years ago.
               Insect pest in hives
Small Hive Beetles
2005 Apiary
   Statistics
From ODA
Colonies Inspected
   21,389

Small Hive Beetles   539
    colonies
                  Insect pest in hives
Small Hive Beetles
Identification: The SHB is found primarily in
      the Southern states of the United
      States is now found in many other
      states especially states that import
      bees for pollination. It is called:
      Aethina tumida .
 The small beetle is black and can be found
      moving rapidly inside the hive when
      exposed to sun light.
The Larvae may be mistaken for wax moth
      larva but they do not spin cocoons as
      the wax moth larva and leave a slime
      trail within the hive. They can make a
      complete mess of a hive which can
      result in the loss of comb in the
      frames and loss of honey crop. This
      beetle seems to prefer weak hives
      especially queen less hives to do its
      damage.
                Insect pest in hives
Small Hive Beetles
Treatment: Several treatments are
      available to the beekeeper for
      SHB.
First, a ground drench - SHB larva crawl
      from the entrance of a hive and
      pupate in the ground around the
      hive stand. The product is called:
      GardStar®. Always read label
      directions for the use of the
      product.
Second, CheckMite+ - TM a strip which
      controls both SHB and Varroa
      mites.
Third , various trap designs. This is the
      trap designed by Mike Hood.
                Insect pest in hives
Wax Moths
2005 Apiary
   Statistics
From ODA
Colonies Inspected
   21,389

Not reported in data collected by
     ODA.
               Insect pest in hives
Wax Moths
Identification:    There are two
     general types found in the
     United States: Galleria
     mellonella L. the Greater
     Wax Moth and Achroia
     grisella F. the Lesser Wax
     Moth.
 Both do considerable damage to
     bee hives that are in weak
     condition and to stored
     comb in supers. It is the
     Wax worms are a serious
     problem in warm weather
     and dark conditions. They
     can do a lot of damage in a
     very short period of time.
                 Insect pest in hives
Wax Moths
 Treatment: Wax moths attack weak
     hives. Strong hives will kept
     them under control.
Wax moths do not like
     light. Exposing equipment to
     light, closing up equipment
     tightly and fumigating with
     "Para-moth" (Para-
     Dichlorobenzene crystals) a
     product available from most
     bee suppliers, and using
     biological control such as
     Bacillus thuringiensis.

See Ann Harman’s article in
     February 2007 Bee Culture
     Magazine. A good investment
     in beekeeping is to subscribe
     to the bee magazines.
             Other Minor Diseases
Nosema A protozoan disease caused by Nosema apis. Although
    most beekeepers do not consider this a major disease, I am
    going to list it as such. It is very damaging to colonies of bees
    that over winter in the north. It kills more hives of bees than it
    is given credit for. You can not see this disease because it is
    caused by spores which germinate in the midgut of the honey
    bee. Symptoms include: shortened life span, fecal deposits on
    the inside of the hive and often on the outside of the hive. One
    way to check for nosema is to pull the digestive tract out of a
    honey bee. Healthy digestive tracts are tan in color. If it is
    white, the bee is usually infected with nosema. Treatment : The
    antibiotic Fumagillin sold as Fumidil-B mixed with sugar syrup
    and fed to the bees in the fall and spring. Literature suggest 1
    gal. of syrup per hive. 0.5 grams are mixed with 6 gallons of
    syrup to feed 6 hives. This is an adult bee disease.
           Other Minor Diseases
Sacbrood

Identification: It is a viral infection of the larva and is
    named after the sac-like appearance of dead
    larvae. The skin of the larva is tough and rubbery and
    if pulled from the cell with a pair of tweezers, will look
    like a thin sac covering the dead larva. It is not a
    common bee disease. Treatment : There is no
    treatment for viral diseases. Just use good sanitary
    beekeeping practices while working with bees and if
    you find a colony with this disease, do not mix other
    hive frames etc. with this colony. Replacing the
    queen with a queen from less susceptible stock may
    help.
          Other Minor Diseases
Paralysis
Identification: It is a viral infection of the adult
   bee. Often the beekeeper will notice that the
   bees are hairless or very glossy as in old
   age. One might notice a number of bees
   crawling on the ground around the hive
   entrance, or trembling on the landing board
   unable to fly. I should point out that the
   trembling could be a symptom of pesticide
   poisoning as well. In some cases the bees
   just disappear or dwindle away.
   Treatment: No treatment for a viral
   disease. Requeening with good stock may
   help.
                 General Treatments
•    The following chart is from the 2007 Dadant Catalog. If you don’t have a copy of this
    catalog, you should request one from Dadant.
                 General Treatments
•   From Dadant catalog 2007

				
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