Recently, one can often hear about the use of cobalt chloride in beekeeping. Why is it needed? Why is it so important for a bee colony? And what is cobalt chloride for bees - the instructions for use of which is given below? Read about this and many other things in our article!
What is this substance?
Any living organism can not exist without micro and macro elements. The first contained in the body of a living being in a very small amount, and the second - in a rather large. Cobalt refers to the first, namely to trace elements. But although it is very small in the body, this element is considered very significant and vital. From the general information about him you can still say the following.
Cobalt is one of the chemical elements of the periodic table. 27 is its atomic number, and atomic mass becomes 58.9332. In its pure form is a heavy metal that has a silver color and a pinkish sheen. The elemental oxides were used in ancient times by the Egyptians and the Chinese as a blue dye. The first interest in terms of biochemistry was called up only in 1934.
Then in different parts of the world cattle began to massively hurt. The disease proceeded with the following consequences: weight loss, lethargy and loss of appetite, anemia. Almost all cases have been fatal. Scientists at first thought that the disease was associated with iron deficiency. But then it was revealed that it was the deficit of cobalt, and not iron, that caused such a massive loss of livestock. Since then, he began to pay much more attention.
Soon it was determined that the element is part of vitamin B12. Also after this incident, they began to study the effect of cobalt salts on bees. The most famous were the works of such scientists: N. M. Glushkov, V. Breker and A. S. Yakovlev. It was found that cobalt sulfate and chloride acts on insects as a strong stimulating additive. The main thing is not to go with the dose. The optimal dosage of 2 mg per 1 l of feeding for one family.
How does he act on bees?
During studies on bees, it was found that vitamin B12 was produced from its salts in the intestines of the insect. Due to this vitamin increased protein and carbohydrate metabolism. Excellent effect on such feeding and progeny. The live weight of the larvae was much larger and those were more developed. And the bees grown on such an additive became more productive.
Other experiments were also carried out. One of these was designed to find out if the bees themselves can find cobalt. So, they were given several dressings, but only one contained element salts. Insects, of course, were partially fed with other additives, but they fed the brood only with cobalt-containing feed.
During the following experiments, it was found that families fed on such a top dressing grew 28.3% more in the brood in the spring and 12.5% more in the fall.
Today cobalt chloride is massively used in beekeeping. But as already mentioned, you can use and sulphate. Substance is distributed in the form of small pinkish tablets and powder. One such tablet contains about 960 milligrams of sea salt and 40 milligrams of an element. The dosage of cobalt chloride becomes 1 tablet per 2 liters of syrup, and the syrup can be of any consistency.
The dosage is based on 20 mg of pure element per 1 liter of syrup. Now let's see what will happen if you give a smaller or larger dose. When giving a smaller amount of cobalt chloride in the feeding, there will be almost no positive effect. And an overdose can lead to disastrous consequences. Give it during spring and autumn dressings.
Contraindications can be attributed perhaps that an overdose of cobalt chloride. It comes after giving syrup several times in a row, where 1 tablet per 1 liter was diluted. Then the dosage is considered to be doubled, and after 5-6 such dressings, negative consequences occur. The egg-laying level of the uterus is greatly reduced, and may cease altogether. Young larvae may also partially die. If we continue the same feeding, then adult larvae may begin to die.
To this end, it is recommended to alternate the use of cobalt chloride through at least one feeding. Then, even with an overdose of negative effects should not occur. The productivity of families will increase by about 30%. While feeding the feeds without the salts of the element, it is possible to carry out the prevention of various diseases and add the appropriate preparations to the syrup.