Resistance conference in Hallsberg 12 Nov

Terje Reinertsen from Norway, more than 25 years of treatment free beekeeping, will visit us and share his experiences.

We who work with varroa resistance in Hallsberg and the surroundings will have our fourth annual conference on varroa resistance and treatment free beekeeping. Anyone who is interested is welcome! In previous years, there have been participants from several different places besides Hallsberg.

We meet on Saturday, November 12, starting at 10 a.m. Ending at about 3 p.m. Alléskolan’s hall or dining room, depending on how many we are. Mingle coffee before 10 am. Light lunch so we will survive the lectures. Afternoon coffee. Pay SEK 150 on the spot. Register in advance to Peter Tesell, text message to +46706199606 or email: tesell@telia.com, preferably no later than November 10.

Last year there was a speaker from outside Sweden, Juhani Lundén from Finland, who shared his experiences. He treated for the last time in 2008. It is not so dense with bees where he lives. He lost many bee colonies the first year, but got about 15 left. Today he has about 50. He first tried to decrease treatment of oxalic acid every year for several years. He lost many hives. He lost less this way.

You should be able to find at least one brood frame with good area of tight capped brood.
You should not find only such frames as this throughout the brood season.

There are usually 4-5 speakers. There are a few of us in the Hallsberg area who have stopped treating against varroa because the bees don’t need it. We have used thymol pads and decreased the amount as time and bees have shown we could. There are more beekeepers in other places in Sweden that have not been treating for several years. Annual losses 5-10%.

Terje Reinertsen from Norway will come and talk about his treatment-free beekeeping for 25 years. Dr. Melissa Oddie, who has researched his bees and is developing how to breed other bees based on his bees, was unable to attend this year, but plans to next.

There are beekeepers that think that resistant bees can only achieved if the bees become less productive in brood rearing. We strongly declare that this is not the case! We have always have strong selective parameter for brood rearing and honey production. Yes, you can make unfavorable selections, but we are observant avoiding this. We want bees that produce honey, for themselves and for us.

It is important that treatment-free bees produce a good harvest and are easy to work, otherwise many will not want them. This is our goal!

Preliminary agenda for the conference:

– Why treatment-free bees? What is happening in Sweden and Norway. Per Ideström – Treatment-free bees for 9 years

– Our successful concept in Norway. Terje Reinertsen – Treatment-free bees for 25 years

– What is happening in Hallsberg? – Unique collaboration. Peter Tesell, Hallsberg. Hallsberg has 3 beekeepers completely treatment-free with approx. 200 colonies and 4 beekeepers almost treatment-free bees with approx. 400 colonies

– Guidelines for breeding work when you have started and when your bees are approximately half the way to being totally treatment free. Erik Österlund, Hallsberg

– My treatment-free beekeeping. Johan Ingjald, Hallsberg

– Experiences and tips when approaching treatment free beekeeping. Radim Gavlovsky, Hallsberg

– To start as a beekeeping sidelining with a treatment-free approach. Richard Clame, Hallsberg

– Fight for treatment-free beekeeping – Treatment-free bees for 7 years. Magnus and Ulrika Kranshammar, Ullared

Unfortunately all lectures are in Swedish (😀) Welcome anywayto join us in the work to give beekeepers treatment-free bees!

Experiences with varroa-resistant bees
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One thought on “Experiences with varroa-resistant bees

  • October 30, 2022 at 15:10
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    Thanks for the information and invitation.
    Presently I keep bees in Sweden treatment free for 3 years, of your stock and descendants.
    Before moving to Sweden I kept bees in Germany without treatments for 5 years. One colony was treated with thymol once.
    Right now I keep 12 colonies in Sweden of which some came into my care this summer and some are 3 years my “pets”, and it was 15 colonies in Germany.

    The difficulties, if there were any, were not the mites. It was queens lost on mating flights, lack of adaptation to the localities ( which in my eyes are even having an effect if colonies are moved a short distance plus where the stock is coming from), woodpeckers, some of my beginners mistakes….or just a bad year. If mite impact was involved, it was not the numbers of mites but the viruses they carried which made a problem. Colonies which are vulnerable can have a low numbers of mites and still succumb to the diseases.

    So, in my eyes, it’s mostly the microbiom which counts and the action of too many disturbances by the beekeepers ( no offense meant to anyone here). That’s why I prefer a natural beekeeping in future, trying this out and enhancing it although I had no losses so far in Sweden and my losses in Germany were acceptable.

    I will not take part in the meeting this year for lack of understanding the Swedish language enough.
    But I wish luck and happiness to all who believe that it’s not normal to douse bees with medicaments just to keep them alive. They are stronger than you believe they are. Many colonies need no help at all and the others can be changed to be stronger.

    Best, Sibylle

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