As you know it is a balmy 55 degrees on 23 Nov 22. There is so much activity in my backyard, I thought there were a few cleansing flights, but now it...
Robbing in November? #816862
Asked November 23, 2022, 2:44 PM EST
As you know it is a balmy 55 degrees on 23 Nov 22. There is so much activity in my backyard, I thought there were a few cleansing flights, but now it looks like a spring day with bees going back and forth. There are also bees crawling on the hive as if they are lost. I am wondering if my hives are being robbed and if I should put a sheet over them or something. Thanks in advance for your advice!
Thanks for reaching out. I'm not surprised that bees are out flying and searching for food in warmer temperatures.
Beekeepers can submit samples of adult bees to the USDA ARS Lab in Beltsville for disease diagnosis. I emailed them to ask if they will look for tracheal mites in samples of adult bees, but the main contact is out of the office until Monday. You could try collecting some adult bees using these instructions: How to Submit Samples : USDA ARS. I'll let you know what I hear back from the lab.
We no longer conduct routine testing for tracheal mites but I will test 1-2 samples on a case-by-case bases. If a state apiarist has inspected the hive and found no other case of distress in the hive, and/or gross symptoms have been observed by the beekeeper. If any of these criteria have been met, a sample can be submitted according to the instructions we have provide.
This work is supported in part by New Technologies for Ag Extension grant no. 2020-41595-30123 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.