Chalkbrood

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Wildflower

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For the first time ever (6 years) I have chalkbrood.
Bad in one hive.
Some evident in 2 others.
I have removed a large amount of bad frames and added adult bees.
I am checking weekly and clearing bottom board. Positioning hives as best as I can to prevent drifting.
I gather requeening will help,but can't quite understand how I can get rid of this,if I have infected bees?
Also,I had a hive die out in winter and some of the frames were moldy. Did this contribute to my bees getting this disease.
My site is dry and hives are usually good.
Any advise is welcome.
 

Josh

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Did you overwinter with OA strips? I only ask because this winter I didn’t and my hive was much dryer.

Shame about the chalkbrood, I look forward to hearing the solution
 

Wildflower

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Did you overwinter with OA strips? I only ask because this winter I didn’t and my hive was much dryer.

Shame about the chalkbrood, I look forward to hearing the solution
Nope. I treated as normal in Autumn. I am stony and dry here, but in Spring I found one of my hives had died. It still had old stores. I am wondering if the bees stole bfrom it as it had gone a bit moldy. Really stumped as to how I can get rid of this. It's a right pain.
 

Wildflower

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O.K. next question? Need some answers...
I have a strong hive.
The chalkbrood hive has a box of unrepared spun honey frames. Haven't taken it from them. I am thinking.🤔 Steal honey from strong hive give to weak chalkbrood hive and replace with unprepared spun honey frames. That way the strong hive increased/fixes frames to replace for nasty chalkbrood ones? I will buy more frames, but need drawn ones.
 

Dansar

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Chalkbrood spores can persist in hive equipment for several decades. The generally acknowledged fix for an infected colony is to requeen with a queen from another resistant genetic stock. Upper ventilation (space under a corner of the hive mat) can assist if damp is an issue/cause but in your case it sounds like requeening is the best way to fix.
 
3,394
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Hawkes Bay
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I have more chalk brood this year than I have seen since we first got it. I even had one hive that is so bad it may not survive. Every hive in New Zealand will have chalk brood spores, these spores affect hives more when conditions aren't perfect such as when they are short of pollen or when you get a lot of cold snaps and they can't keep the brood nest as warm as they would like. There is absolutely a genetic component and a lot of my troubles I blame on neighbouring beekeepers keeping bees that are not resistant and those bees have been mating with my selected resistant stock.
Having said all that unless they have really bad chalk brood it will normally clear up as the weather warms up. A few years ago I had quite a bad hive and was going to re-queen but I decided to keep it at home as I was having a field day in a couple of weeks and wanted to have a diseased hive to show people. When I opened the hive up there was not a single cell of chalk brood left in it.
When we first got chalk brood it spread to every hive with lightning speed but selective breeding eliminated most of the bad effects from it. There is no doubt that some areas suffer worse from chalk brood than others and those the areas you should get your breeders from. Areas with cold miserable springs tend to have a lot more chalk brood then nice warm places. I generally ignore chalk brood unless it's really bad and where hives just have a smattering they will normally clear it up and advance as well as or nearly as well as other hives.
It's probably not that good to put a really heavily infested frame into a hive with no symptoms but I guarantee that every hive in New Zealand has chalk brood spores in it.
It is believed by many including me that chalk brood came into the country with illegal imports of Caucasian queens. It is something we could have well done without but can generally live with. As a footnote there are strains that are more virulent than others and it is important to keep bees out of the country even if MPI don't recognise this as a fact.
 

Alastair

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Auckland
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Chalk brood is definately genetic related, some bees are a lot more prone to it.

This year I've had quite a bit after not having seen any for several years. Hives that are prone to it may get it if there are certain stress conditions. Which might be nutrition, weather, or whatever.

Unless it's super bad don't worry about it, it will clear up in time. But if it's real bad, change the genetics of the hive.

Don't breed from anything that had chalk brood.
 

Wildflower

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I have more chalk brood this year than I have seen since we first got it. I even had one hive that is so bad it may not survive. Every hive in New Zealand will have chalk brood spores, these spores affect hives more when conditions aren't perfect such as when they are short of pollen or when you get a lot of cold snaps and they can't keep the brood nest as warm as they would like. There is absolutely a genetic component and a lot of my troubles I blame on neighbouring beekeepers keeping bees that are not resistant and those bees have been mating with my selected resistant stock.
Having said all that unless they have really bad chalk brood it will normally clear up as the weather warms up. A few years ago I had quite a bad hive and was going to re-queen but I decided to keep it at home as I was having a field day in a couple of weeks and wanted to have a diseased hive to show people. When I opened the hive up there was not a single cell of chalk brood left in it.
When we first got chalk brood it spread to every hive with lightning speed but selective breeding eliminated most of the bad effects from it. There is no doubt that some areas suffer worse from chalk brood than others and those the areas you should get your breeders from. Areas with cold miserable springs tend to have a lot more chalk brood then nice warm places. I generally ignore chalk brood unless it's really bad and where hives just have a smattering they will normally clear it up and advance as well as or nearly as well as other hives.
It's probably not that good to put a really heavily infested frame into a hive with no symptoms but I guarantee that every hive in New Zealand has chalk brood spores in it.
It is believed by many including me that chalk brood came into the country with illegal imports of Caucasian queens. It is something we could have well done without but can generally live with. As a footnote there are strains that are more virulent than others and it is important to keep bees out of the country even if MPI don't recognise this as a fact
 

Wildflower

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EYREWELL
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Interesting. Thankyou.
I work in a garden centre,and I have filled my trolley with bee friendly stuff,every week for 7 yrs. I doubt lack of pollen is a problem. In fact, I often have too many pollen clogged frames that I sometimes have remove to make space for laying. My hives, and land tend to be dry.
I will definately get a few new queens.
I still don't really understand where the spores come from? Could it have developed on my dead hive that went a bit moldy during early Spring? There was lots of honey in it,so I let the bees rob it out,thinking they could benefit from cleaning it up,but when I looked at it there was evidence if mould. Is this where it all started?
 


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