At one point or another, every beekeeper will have to contend with pests. After all, bees are living creatures and are, therefore, susceptible to the same pests and diseases as any other animal.
Whether you have a bee farm or want to control other pests without harming bees, there are ways to do so.
Fortunately, if you’re dealing with mites or other insects, there are a few pest control products and methods that are safe for bees. Etoxazole is one such product that is effective against varroa mites.
You can also use Beauveria bassiana, a naturally occurring fungus that attacks and kills bees’ pests without harming the bees themselves. These pesticides are selective, which means that bees will be on the safe side.
Pest Control Without Killing Bees: Different Methods
The importance of bees in our ecosystem cannot be overstated.
They are responsible for pollinating a third of the world’s crops, and their importance in the agriculture industry is immeasurable. However, we may find ourselves in a situation where we may get infested with different kinds of bests, with a couple of bees lying around in the area.
This is most especially true if you have a bee farm or if you are into beekeeping.
While we definitely want to get rid of all the other pests, the common problem with different pesticides and insecticides is they seem to harm the bees as well. Obviously, we don’t want that to happen, which is why we’ve made this post for you.
The good thing is there are numerous methods of pest control that are safe for bees. Here are some of them:
Among the most popular, Etoxazole is known to kill different mites that feed on plants. As a selective miticide, it is safe for use on bees as it does not have any adverse effect on them – especially for adult honey bees.
In fact, Etoxazole is widely used in different bee farms to help control various plant-eating mites.
If you’re dealing with a mite problem, Etoxazole is definitely your best bet.
This may get too technical for a bit, but it’s important to know what you’re dealing with. Metarhizium is a kind of fungi that specifically targets insects that normally thrives in soils.
This fungus usually kills fungus and can help get rid of ticks, ticks, whiteflies, thrips, and mites.
In fact, different commercially available products may contain this fungus as the main ingredient.
With that in mind, if your soil is filled with insects, but you don’t want to risk the health of honey bees in the surrounding area, a naturally occurring fungus lang Metarhizium infection could be the solution.
A lot of people have been using neem oil for a long time now – and for a good reason. This natural oil is derived from the seeds of the neem tree, and it’s popular for its Insecticidal properties.
In fact, it has long been used as an organic pesticide in different farms.
In a nutshell, neem oil has always been a top favorite because it’s widely effective against different kinds of pests but is considered non-toxic to humans, mammals, birds, and even bees.
In fact, neem oil is even safe to be applied around plants allowing you to get rid of the insects while not harming the plants at the same time.
Get Rid of Garden Invaders with Beneficial Insects
Bees are considered to be a beneficial insect, but there is a nomad of other insects that can help you get rid of garden pests.
Among the most popular are ladybugs, which feast on aphids. There are also some insects that feed on whiteflies, thrips, caterpillars, and other small insects.
And don’t forget the praying mantis. These strange-looking insects are actually voracious predators that will gladly feast on any pests that happen to cross their path.
They’re especially effective against caterpillars, aphids, and grasshoppers. They don’t stop there – the list goes on and on.
Overall, having beneficial insects around in your yard can help you significantly. Predatory insects can help keep the population of garden pests in check, and they can be a big help if you’re dealing with an infestation.
Releasing ladybugs in your garden, and you’ll notice the aphid population will go down in no time.
This may seem like a strange solution, but garlic has long been used as an effective organic pesticide. In fact, it’s so effective that some commercial pesticides actually have garlic extract as one of the main ingredients.
Garlic is known to be effective against different kinds of pests, including aphids, whiteflies, and mites. It works by releasing a chemical that’s toxic to pests but is harmless to humans and bees.
To use garlic as an organic pesticide, you can either plant garlic in your garden or make a garlic spray. This works by crushing some cloves of garlic and adding it to water.
Let it sit for a few hours before straining it. The resulting mixture can then be sprayed on the plants infested with pests.
This method rarely disturbs bees and other pollinators since garlic has a very strong smell. However, if you’re going to use this method, it’s best to do it in the evening when bees are less active.
Generally speaking, herbicides are generally safe to use around bees. These products are designed to kill plants, not animals. However, there are some herbicides that contain chemicals that can be harmful to bees.
If you’re going to use herbicides, make sure to read the label carefully. Avoid products that contain glyphosate or 2,4-D, as these chemicals can be harmful to bees. Other than these, most herbicides are safe to use and won’t disturb bees.
Limonene is a natural chemical that’s derived from citrus fruits. It has a strong citrus smell, and it’s often used as an ingredient in cleaning products and air fresheners.
Aside from its pleasant smell, limonene is also known for its Insecticidal properties. It works by causing paralysis in the insects, eventually leading to death.
Limonene is considered to be safe for humans, other mammals, bees, and even birds. However, bear in mind that if you’re growing a garden and dealing with pests, this method doesn’t work as much since limonene also kills beneficial insects and may be harmful to your plants as well.
On the other hand, if you’re dealing with an infestation in your house, using a limonene-based insecticide can be an effective way to get rid of the pests while being safe for bees.
Kaolin clay is often used in skincare products. It often comes in the form of a powder and can be used as a gentle exfoliant. However, kaolin clay can also be used as an organic pesticide.
This type of clay works by coating the pests. And since most insects and pests breathe through their skin, the kaolin clay will eventually suffocate them. This method is considered to be safe for both humans and bees.
To use kaolin clay as an organic pesticide, simply mix the powder with water to form a thick paste. Apply the paste on the leaves of the plants infested with pests. You can also place this mixture in areas where you often see pests. The kaolin clay will coat them and eventually kill them.
What Pest Control is Okay for Bees: Final Thoughts
Pest control may often be perceived as a necessary evil – but it doesn’t have to be. Controlling the pest population without doing any harm to bees is possible with the right methods.
Organic pest control, beneficial insects, garlic, herbicides, and other products can help you accomplish this. At the end of the day, it’s all about using the right method for the job.