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Mite Treatment -NC


#1

Hey y’all, it’s been a little busy and I haven’t had a chance to come on here but I wanted to throw out a question. So instead of the flowhive I gave the bees another medium before I left on vacation and they have it all combed out, glad I did that vs take anything from them this year. @Red_Hot_Chilipepper mentioned treating for mites when I got back. What is the best process? I found some vapor units online I was going to order one if that would be best. The other question is when to do it? Night when all the bees are back?

Thanks as always for the responses!


#2

The best is to do a mite count before treating. Either sugar roll or alcohol wash are my preferences for a more accurate count. Sticky boards are very inaccurate. If you find a count which is worrying, then I would consider treating.

There are a couple of problems with treating without counting at this time of year.

  1. You may be treating when it is not needed. This can contribute to mite resistance.
  2. If you have another nectar flow in your region, you may be limited in what treatment you can use with honey supers on the hive.
  3. If you treat with OAV at this time of year, there will be capped brood in the hive. That means you need to do 3 treatments at 5 day intervals. I imagine in NC your bees do cluster at some point and go broodless. It is much more convenient to OAV at that point. I would consider Apivar strips instead, if there is capped brood and you need to treat. However, you can’t use Apivar with a honey super on the hive.

Either at night, or very early morning. You need to be prepared to block off the entrance with a towel or similar, and make sure you stand down wind or buy a decent respirator mask. In your line of business, you may have one already. :wink: Remember, you need to do 3 treatments at 5 day intervals. Varrox has quite a good video on how to do it. Worth Googling and watching it. :blush:


#3

At this time of year I do Apivar strips.
Do it any time of day that is convenient for you. There is no need to block off the entrance and I only wear my bee-suit.
Leave it in the hive for 6 weeks and remove.


#4

Just to clarify, my block off the entrance comment was about OAV, not Apivar. :blush:


#5

Sugar roll as Dawn said
I use OAV and nothing else these days.
I posted this elsewhere just now

You can vape with supers on if you really have to.
Move hive aside, lift super onto a new bottom board so that returning foragers have somewhere to return to.
Seal entrance to brood box/s and vape.
When finished rebuild the hive as it was. The bees move the oxalic about so those in the supers get a dose

You can get into quite a rhythm with it and if you have an assistant it’s a doddle

This question of mite resistance comes up frequently. There is no evidence that resistance to oxalic is occurring as the damage is a physical one to the mites’ structure.
There is another way of measuring the colony’s mite load and that is with an accelerated mite drop. You treat the whole brood box with something that dislodges all the phoretic mites and you take a 24hour measurement. The traditional method is to dust the bees with icing sugar but you can do it with oxalic vapour. I do that and it’s so easy, you don’t have to open the hive up as you would with sugar dusting. I do it this way when there are no supers on. Anything over 20 gets treated


#6

Hi Greg, I’ve been pretty busy also. You may have treated your bees already and that’s good. If you ask 5 beekers a question you’ll get 10 different answers. Just chiming in. I just treated my bees yesterday with MAQS; Mite-Away quick strips. You lay them on top of your bottom brood box [per instructions] and leave them in for a week. I’ve been told it’s good to vary your forms of treatment and not to over use any one that works, kind of like differing antibiotics. I’ll use a different treatment next round. I also learned of a fairly new verroa counting method using co2 which knocks the bees/verroa out and then shake and count. Brushy Mounty Bee Farm sells the kit. Well that’s my input. Happy beekeeping…:honeybee::sunglasses: Mark