DNR - Entomology Weekly Review, April 6


Weekly Review for April 6, 2022

This informal report by the Division of Entomology & Plant Pathology is a commentary on insects, diseases, and curiosities division staff encounter on a week-to-week basis. Comments and questions about this report are welcome and can be sent to your respective Inspector.

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Kathleen Prough (Chief Apiary Inspector) - KPrough@dnr.IN.gov

I completed some apiary inspections during these past weeks. Hives are expanding fast. Beekeepers will need to get another super on soon, so the queen still has room to expand. Be careful reversing supers. The cold nights can cause problems if you split up the brood. Placing another super on top will allow the bees to put the nectar up there instead of storing it in the brood area.

If we get steady warm weather, beekeepers may be able to split hives in late April in the southern part of the state and in May for central and northern beekeepers. I recommend you split a strong hive allowing lots of bees in both splits, therefore leaving enough bees to cover the brood.

The Heartland Apicultural Society Meeting will be in Evansville from June 29 to July 1. The agenda and registration are online.

On March 31, I officially retired as apiary inspector. It has been a great experience working with the beekeepers in Indiana for the past 27 years. Keep your hives healthy, and maybe I will see you at a beekeeper meeting in the future.

Jared Spokowsky (Nursery Inspetor & Compliance Officer)Jspokowsky@dnr.IN.gov

I have yet to get out and do much inspection work, mainly because I have been immersing myself in the Apiary world. With Kathleen Prough’s retirement, I will be taking on some of the apiary inspection and survey work. So, anyone reading this who is a beekeeper in southeast Indiana who has a problem with a hive or questions about beekeeping or would like to participate in the apiary inspector/USDA survey, feel free to contact me. Really for that matter anyone interested in the USDA survey, feel free to contact me. The survey includes taking a composite sample of bees (½ cup) and pollen, and sending it to one of the USDA bee labs for analysis. There is no cost to the beekeeper.

Along those lines, April 1 was the start of the Bee Informed 2021-2022 Annual Loss and Management Survey”. If you keep bees, help researchers monitor long-term trends and collect mortality data by filling out this 30-minute survey.

In other news, my ‘Methley’ Japanese plum was in bloom on March 28 when the mercury dropped to a frosty 19 degrees F. I was worried that I would lose most of my flowers to freeze damage, but I got by relatively unscathed. I would estimate that somewhere between 15-20% of the flowers froze. At first glance it looked like a much higher percentage, but most of the damage was superficial.

In the photo below, the bloom on the far left has died, which is indicated by the shriveled peduncle (stem), while the flower second from the left is still green and rigid. Likewise, the flower third from the left is bisected, exposing the small blackened ovary and shriveled style at the base of the flower that indicates it is dead. The last flower on the right (also bisected) shows the ovary and style are still green and plump.


No reports this week

Megan Abraham (Division Director & State Entomologist) - MAbraham@dnr.IN.gov

Eric Biddinger (Nursery Inspector & Compliance Officer) - EBiddinger@dnr.IN.gov 

Eric Bitner (Nursery Inspector & Compliance Officer) - EBitner@dnr.IN.gov

Kallie Bontrager (Nursery Inspector & Compliance Officer) - KBontrager@dnr.IN.gov

Vince Burkle (Nursery Inspector & Compliance Officer) - VBurkle@dnr.IN.gov

Ken Cote (Nursery Inspector & Compliance Officer) - KCote@dnr.IN.gov

Ren Hall (Nursery Inspector & Compliance Officer) RHall@dnr.IN.gov

Phil Marshall (State Forest Health Specialist) - PMarshall@dnr.IN.gov

Angela Rust (Nursery Inspector & Compliance Officer) - ARust@dnr.IN.gov

Kristy Stultz (Nursery Inspector & Compliance Officer) - KStultz@dnr.IN.gov

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