The fourth honey bee disease on the list for the Apprentice Level Exam for the Texas Master Beekeeper Program is Chalkbrood.
Chalkbrood isn’t as scary as American Foulbrood, European Foulbrood and Nosema. Chalkbrood is a fungal disease. There isn’t really a treatment for it, but the bees usually get rid of it through their normal hygenic behavior. Cases are usually seen in springtime especially when it’s damp and cool. The name comes from how the dead larvae get all white and chalky and swell to fill the cell in which they’re located.
Adult bees clean up the chalkbrood and get rid of the disease. In fact, the white mummies fall to the bottom board of the hive where you can see them. If it seems to be persistent, requeen for better stock that will keep things nice and tidy in the hive.
So there you go! Next: Sacbrood!
Here are a couple of helpful links:
Texas Apiary Inspection Service Article on Chalkbrood
Helpful YouTube Video on Chalkbrood