American Foulbrood

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

American Foulbrood


an infectious disease of bee larvae caused by the microbe Bacillus larvae. American foul-brood was first described in North America by G. F. White in 1902; hence the name. The disease has spread throughout the world. It is encountered everywhere in the USSR with the exception of the Khabarovsk and Maritime krais. It reduces the hive yield by 80 percent. It strikes bee colonies most heavily in July and August. The pathogen of American foul-brood is spread by wandering bees, by robber bees, and by certain insect pests of the bees. The incubation period of the disease is five to six days. Sick and dead larvae can be noted among the normally developing brood in the honeycombs; the infected larvae are marked by dark, collapsed, and perforated covers. The rotting corpses of the larvae are coffee colored and have a viscous consistency and an odor of carpenter’s glue.

The hives which have been infested with American foul-brood are put in quarantine. The ailing broods are isolated from the healthy, transplanted to disinfected hives on frames with artificial beeswax, and fed on sugar syrup with sulfanilamides or antibiotics. The used nest and the tools are disinfected. The infected bee colonies are brought to safe areas and the quarantine is lifted one year after the eradication of the infection in the hive.


Poltev, V. I. Bolezni pchel, 4th ed. Leningrad, 1964.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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