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HELP! Verroa and DWV


It is early fall here in Kansas City, Missouri. Leaves are falling and temperatures are dropping. However, goldenrod and asters are still in bloom and bees are returning with their pollen sacks full. I harvested honey from my Flow hive last week. With the honey harvested it was time to treat for verroa. I put Aptivar strips in the 2 brood boxes and closed up the hive. I then noticed worker bees carrying out bees with deformed wing virus(DWV) and dropping them on the ground (see attached picture). I then pulled out the corrugated bottom board and there were verroa mites everywhere. I fear I have a heavy infestation.

As stated I have Aptivar strips in the hive now. I also have Mite Away QuickStrips on the shelf. My questions: should I stick with the Aptivar alone, add the Mite Away Strips, or is my Hive beyond saving no matter what I do?


Hey @Brick I’m so bummed for you & sad to see those pics. I cannot profess to know what to tell you about your treatment options at this point, as I’m only a third year and have been strictly working with OAV and more basic management tasks.

Curious to hear what others with more knowhow will say…


It’s late in the year to treat for Varroa but it must be done. I suppose you could vaporize with Oxalic acid in conjunction with the Apivar. The Oxalic will knock off pretty much every mite not under the sealed brood.


I’ve never used oxalic acid and don’t have it readily available. I do have the Mite Away Quick Strips. Should I use those in addition to the Aptivar?


Definitely not. One at a time, or you risk losing a lot of bees. :blush:


You can get a little tub of wood bleach from any hardware store - it’s the same stuff. Vaporizing wands are all over the internet but buyer beware of the cheap ones from Ukraine, the one I bought fried itself after maybe 10 uses. Stick with a beekeeping company product on the wand - more pricey, but to me and many other beeks here and in Europe, it’s a must-have. You’ll also need a little mower battery, a bucket & some rags. Safety googles and a respirator if you’re going to be completely thorough and cautious - but you can work around these. Instructions for vaping abound on this forum, so I won’t bore you with them at this point.


I definitely wouldn’t use Formic and Apivar at the same time for Varroa mites.


Is the hive full of bees? Is the queen still laying? What does the population look like? It’s hard to say how diminished the hive is. The queen might be healthy and so might her eggs. I would re treat the hive with oxcilc acid vapor and see if the colony regenerates.


Are you sure that the mites on the bottom board were not there as a result of the treatment? In which case you might have caught it in time.

Don’t treat again unless you are sure that you have a current active infestation. Do a mite drop or a sugar shake test when the current treatment is over.