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Pepper pot brood

 
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BridgetB
Scout Bee


Joined: 12 Jul 2010
Posts: 355
Location: UK Cornwall, Falmouth

PostPosted: Fri Jul 03, 2015 5:32 pm    Post subject: Pepper pot brood Reply with quote

I have a swarm moved in 11days ago and today transferred it into a top bar hive. It has sealed brood and larvae that look OK I think, but the sealed brood has a pepper pot pattern in places and some nibbled caps. Looking at my Foulbrood booklet, this could be a symptom of EFB. Would it show up this quickly. Am I worrying needlessly?
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Tavascarow
Silver Bee


Joined: 24 Jun 2008
Posts: 962
Location: UK Cornwall Snozzle

PostPosted: Sun Jul 05, 2015 7:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If they are on their own fresh comb that they built with the honey they carried with them. & not fed copious amounts of sugar then the chances are very minimal that this is EFB. Brood disease is spread by spores in affected brood cells & honey.
If a colony swarms & consumes all the honey they take with them then they should be clean, even if they have swarmed from an infected hive.

I suspect you have a queen that has had an incomplete mating.
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BridgetB
Scout Bee


Joined: 12 Jul 2010
Posts: 355
Location: UK Cornwall, Falmouth

PostPosted: Sun Jul 05, 2015 8:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What happened was this: I was nurturing a tiny dwindling colony (varroa overload) in a nuc with one frame of their own honey. Of course, it just got robbed out. - My husband just bunged this empty hive on top of the caravan - and a swarm moved in! So it had an empty and pretty shredded frame of wax and 4 empty top bars. The brood is all on new comb, which is already almost full size.
I was just working it out; having sealed brood at 11 days is pretty good going and would probably indicate a prime swarm, and maybe an old queen? On studying the photo I could not find the tell tale brownish larvae of EFB and there are many other brood problems anyway, so I think I am feeling reassured. I am washing all clothing, boots and equipment anyway.
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Tavascarow
Silver Bee


Joined: 24 Jun 2008
Posts: 962
Location: UK Cornwall Snozzle

PostPosted: Sun Jul 05, 2015 1:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe the old queen is a little past her prime.
I expect they will supersede in the coming months.
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DrMartin
House Bee


Joined: 29 Jun 2015
Posts: 19
Location: Cambridge

PostPosted: Wed Jul 08, 2015 4:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would always always always call in another beek for a second opinion. If you see something amiss it's not worth taking chances. It's probably nothing but it could be a notifiable disease which you have a responsibility to report.
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BridgetB
Scout Bee


Joined: 12 Jul 2010
Posts: 355
Location: UK Cornwall, Falmouth

PostPosted: Wed Jul 08, 2015 6:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, I am already in contact with the bee inspector. I'll post the outcome in due course.
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AugustC
Silver Bee


Joined: 08 Jul 2013
Posts: 613
Location: Malton, North Yorkshire

PostPosted: Thu Jul 09, 2015 12:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I recommend having the bee inspector over for tea and get them to have a look. Having said that I think it is much more likely that you have an aging queen that is running out of fertilised eggs. I caught a swarm like this last year and ending up just combining it with another hive to bolster their numbers. Best of luck.
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BridgetB
Scout Bee


Joined: 12 Jul 2010
Posts: 355
Location: UK Cornwall, Falmouth

PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2015 4:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The bee inspector phoned me back and suggested my photo looked like chalk brood and to report back to him in a couple of weeks. (This hive is in an apiary on its own)

Today I have checked and there is indeed quite a quantity of removed chalk brood larvae on the floor of the hive. The central areas of sealed brood have emerged and been relaid seeing eggs and small larvae there. The sealed brood all looks normal (apart from the pepper-pot pattern) and there were no discoloured or deformed larvae on any of the 4 combs that I could see. So I am reassured, but not sure how this colony will go on? I have reduced the entrance with half a cork against wasps which are just starting to investigate my hives.
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AugustC
Silver Bee


Joined: 08 Jul 2013
Posts: 613
Location: Malton, North Yorkshire

PostPosted: Wed Jul 15, 2015 6:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chalk brood "can" occur as a result of brood chilling. If the bee numbers are low and/or the amount of space they have is too big for them to maintain proper brood temp in
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