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A Glimpse into the Past: Lousy Honey Bees in Carroll County

Patch takes a glimpse at what was happening in Carroll County 75 years ago.

The following information appeared in the Democratic Advocate on Oct. 5, 1923. 

Lousy Honey Bees—Carroll county is distinguished at this time as having within her borders more honey bees per square mile than any other part of Maryland.

She is also on the map as the only spot in the whole United States having lousy bees. Yes, lice on bees. Real parasites that have the government bee experts in Washington laying awake nights trying to figure out a way to get them off the little honey makers.

Dr. E. L. Sechrist, of the Bureau of Entomology, together with experts in the National Museum, at Washington, have made a thorough study of the new pest in the bee yards of Rockward and Sterling Nusbaum, near Taneytown. The Nusbaum boys are Maryland's largest commercial honey producers.

Rockward Nusbaum discovered these lice amongst his bees more than five years ago. Since that time they have been spreading about at an alarming rate. The lice seem to be very anxious to ride around on the queen bee. As high as sixteen lice have been seen on one queen. This seriously interrupts the egg laying of her royal highness and since the queen lays all the eggs for the colony the lice diminish the force of workers in the hive.

This information was supplied by the Historical Society of Carroll County

Buck Harmon October 03, 2012 at 12:23 PM
Carroll County farmers also spray massive amounts of pesticide and herbicide~ toxic chemicals onto the vast majority of the land that's farmed. This process has probably destroyed other insects that may have been sharing as hosts for the lice, messing with nature by the use of man made petro chemical products will always take a toll on the balance of nature. Without the honey bees our food supplies would diminish rapidly over about a 4 year period. The use of high production~ greed driven petro chemicals in the name of healthy farming in Carroll County is pure illusion that seems to be showing the toll....seem many pheasants lately?
Marian Dell October 03, 2012 at 01:30 PM
This article was written in 1923 not present time. If farmers were not allowed to use certain weed killers on their crops we would not be able to produce the food that Mr. Harmon eats or other Americans eat. How long would our food supply last without our farmers.
Buck Harmon October 03, 2012 at 01:55 PM
Genetically modified petro chemical farming is destroying the food that most eat in ways that remain to be seen.....currently, the obesity problem that we face is linked to some of the chemicals that are used to make things grow fast and full. To deny the fact that these chemicals are destructive would indicate that you are somehow tied to the profits gained by the governments promotion of the use of such deadly products here in Carroll. Herbicides kill... Pesticides kill... Genetically modified seed, force growth by the use of chemicals throughout the process, making our farming operations dependent on the use of petro chemicals, oil based chemicals take a huge toll on our environment as well...the current bee population when compared to 1923 is way down....
Buck Harmon October 03, 2012 at 02:01 PM
Farmers have fallen prey to government programs that have seemingly forced them to participate in the chemical farming process or fail....many had no choice the way that these programs were established. Organic farmers grow abundant, and very healthy crops without the use of dangerous chemicals but because of the government control of farming, price fixing and low quality high volume food products are rampant in todays society.
Buck Harmon October 03, 2012 at 10:50 PM
What have we learned throughout a history of farming in Carroll?

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