Category Archives: Diseases and Pests

A Guide to Controlling Varroa

Spring is arriving in the north, and a young man’s mind thinks about romance. And varroa. There’s a nice new single-page guide that offers a quick look at integrated pest management (IPM) for the varroa beast. You can read some … Continue reading

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Making honey talk

A biochemistry student at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, has been analyzing proteins in honey. Since proteins (for example, pollen grains, shown above) make up only about 0.1-0.5% (one to five parts per thousand) of the volume of a … Continue reading

Posted in Diseases and Pests, Honey, Science, Tools and Gadgets | Tagged , | 7 Comments

You thought bees were vegetarians?

Well, looks like another sacred truth has been shattered. Bees eat beefy little microbes as part of their regular diet. Never again will I stand in front of a class of new beekeepers and implore them to marvel at the … Continue reading

Posted in Bee Biology, Diseases and Pests, Ecology, Pesticides, Save the Bees, Science | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

At least one of these bees is a laying worker

At least one of the bees in the picture above is a laying worker. Can you spot her?  I can’t. But if you read this post to the end, you will have the answer – and a really nice bonus, … Continue reading

Posted in Bee Biology, Beekeeping, Diseases and Pests, Queens, Science | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

Are you listening to your bees?

Experienced beekeepers approach their hives as one might enter a church or temple. With quiet respect. Once there, we listen. That’s an important part of our role.  The listening beekeeper knows in an instant if the colony is queenless or … Continue reading

Posted in Bee Biology, Beekeeping, Diseases and Pests, Tools and Gadgets | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

The $3 Billion Vacation

I’ve heard ‘three billion dollars’ as the ‘permanent’ cost of giving 700,000 US government workers an unexpected 35-day vacation. There were also thousands of consultants furloughed because of the federal shutdown.  According to economists, who mostly look at lost income … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, or lack thereof, Diseases and Pests, Strange, Odd Stuff | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Causes of Winter Losses

Spring teased us today. It looked good for a few minutes. The sun was shining and we could imagine that someday it could be Cancun-warm here. But we will get another layer of snow tonight here in western Canada. Nevertheless, … Continue reading

Posted in Beekeeping, Diseases and Pests | Tagged , , | 9 Comments

Oh dear, a virus ‘jumps’ from plants to bees

The bane of the bee is varroa. We warn new beekeepers that varroa will kill their bees faster than they can say “varroosis“ five times.  Varroa kills. Thirty years ago, the mites weren’t as bad as they are now. In … Continue reading

Posted in Bee Biology, Diseases and Pests, Ecology, Science | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Crazy Russian Hacker lost all his bees!

My son is a fan of a YouTube sensation who calls himself the “Crazy Russian Hacker.” Taras Kulakov came to America from the Ukraine as a child refugee. He’s 30 now. A few years ago, he began making fun videos … Continue reading

Posted in Beekeeping, Diseases and Pests, Movies, Outreach, People, Save the Bees, Strange, Odd Stuff | Tagged , , , | 13 Comments

Have you lithium-chlorided your bees yet?

A friend (Thanks, Thomas!) sent a note this morning about a new mite treatment. It was developed at the University of Hohenheim, Apicultural State Institute, Stuttgart, Germany. Findings were published in Nature.  So, I am guessing that the science – … Continue reading

Posted in Diseases and Pests, Save the Bees, Tools and Gadgets | Tagged , | 21 Comments