Thursday, July 23, 2009

Small hive beetles

This is small hive beetle larvae.
They are just as destructive as the wax moth.
The thing with these two pests is it's very hard to distinguish between the two at first. I had to put a few in a small jar with some alcohol in it so I could bring them in and google. I just love this information age;o)
Anywho....getting back to the hive. This is a hive we rescued about a month ago. Actually there were two small swarms(different locations) they had lost their queens by the time we got to them. I ended up combining them and if you go back to my previous post it's all there, the new queen rearing, etc. They had one frame of comb in
which the new queen had started laying. Again as I said earlier you have to stay in your small hives, they are weak because there is not very many of them to fight off pests and do everything else they have to do too. It's tough being a little honeybee:o( These pictures to the left are adult hive beetles. they have hard shells and are very hard for the bees to remove. I even have a hard time killing them, they are extremely fast and are great hiders. They can shimmy down into a crevice before you have time to blink. My husband has NO patients when it comes to me inspecting and finding these creatures. I will hold a frame for
the longest with my paring knife and nail tracking these pests down. The bees appreciate it too..I can really they jump on that wounded beetle with all their might and carry it off! It's the neatest thing to watch. One of the reasons my husband doesn't take the time to do this is my hands are smaller and I can take our "southern" heat better than he can. So he tells me:O) I know that there are a few or at least ONE of you that reads my blog, that thinks I stay in them too much....SEE what happens when I stay away?I haven't been in the hives in over a week:o( The pee-wee hives need my attention..I am a BEE
keeper after all it is my responsibility to look after my girls and give them a helping hand:O) Today after finding this mess I took some brood and comb from a bigger stronger hive and gave it to the "pee-wee" hive. They seemed so much happier. And I felt better too.
I put together a new hive box for them with new frames and discarded this bottom board (bottom picture) The reason it looks wet is because it is ;o)
When the larvae eats into the honey comb honey leaks out and gets all over the bottom. When the bees try to clean it up some of them start trying to build comb which is the darker stuff on the
bottom. Can you see the larvae? Did you see
them in the top picture? Just checking.... ;O)
I'm a "newbee" beekeeper with a lot to still learn, that's another reason why I like to much info out there, but if you have a question for me just post a comment or e-mail me, it's in my profile link up top.
So until next time... BEE STRONG ;O) Julie

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