Honey bees need a good residence to flourish and they never bear any offensive conduct. If you are new to the...
How Do Wax Moths Affect Bees And How To Combat Them?
Wax moth is a damaging pest to the beehives colony and it can destroy the entire colony in a few days. Normally, the bees in the strong hives kill any wax moth as soon as they enter. But, if the hive is weak, the wax moth poses a risk to the bees. The wax moth itself does not do any harm to the bees. It is their larvae that can lead to the destruction of the hive.
It is explained here in more details about how they affect the bees and the hives.
How Wax Moths Affect the Bees?
The wax moths enter the hives through any small opening available. They also start their lifecycle there, which is heavily influenced by the weather condition. Warm weather accelerates their life cycle. The wax moths start laying eggs in the cracks and spaces in the hive that are normally not reachable by the bees. The egg hatches in 3-5 days during the warm weather and the larvae start burrowing through the brood comb. They eat beeswax, honeybee larvae cocoons, bee cocoon silk and bee faces also.
The larvae also release a sticky substance that sticks to the comb. Sometimes this substance traps the bees in their cell such a way that the bee can’t get out and die there. Thus these wax moths affect the population of the honey bee hives. And finally, the wax moth larvae make the brood comb unusable for the bees. As a result, the colony becomes weak gradually and it also becomes vulnerable to other parasites as well.
There are definitely ways to combat these wax moths. Here we have explained some of the best methods to remove them from the beehives.
How to Combat Wax Moths?
There are plenty of ways to get rid of the wax moths.
· First of all, ensure to have a strong beehive colony. Strong beehive is highly protected. The bees kill the wax moths as soon as they enter the hive. Also, they will kill the larvae and eggs.
· Use bottom entrances in the beehive. The wax moth enters the hives through the upper holes and entrances. So, you must seal the upper entrances and use only bottom entrances. However, if it is important to keep a hole for ventilation, ensure the entrance is screened for protection.
· Wax moths do not live in the cold weather. So, you should freeze the rotate of the frames very often to keep them away from the wax moths. Freezing will kill everything such as the larvae, eggs and wax moths.
· There should not be any foundation for the frame. Foundation-less beehive frame offers fewer honeycomb to the larvae for their stay.
· Mint leaves are a good idea to drive away the wax moths from the beehive. The wax moths can’t tolerate mint smell at all. So, you can either plant some mint near the beehive or else keep some bunches of mint leaves in the hive.
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