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Field and laboratory studies on chalkbrood disease ascosphaera apis of honey bees



Field and laboratory studies on chalkbrood disease ascosphaera apis of honey bees



American Bee Journal 122(1): 29-33



A comparison of the incidence of chalkbrood disease in selected wintered and in package bee colonies showed colonies developed maximum infection in early summer. Selected colonies had higher infection levels than package colonies. Larval loss ranged from 0.04-4.0% and showed an inverse relationship with the amount of sealed brood. Honey production was not affected at these levels of infection. Feeding sorbic acid and sodium propionate in a pollen supplement reduced infection by .apprx. 50%. New comb also reduced the number of infected larvae. Mummified larvae had an ascospore level of .apprx. 3.15 (.+-. 0.03) .times. 103/mummy. Cultures from an infected colony showed viable A. apis present in pollen and the gut of larvae and adults. The fungus was not detected in ripened honey, freshly stored nectar, royal jelly, sterile swabs from empty brood cells after mummy removal or in the gut of healthy pupae.

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