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Thread: Aistan strips

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    N. Huntingdon, PA usa
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    10

    Question

    This is my first winter with my hive and using chemical strips. What my problem is;
    I put the strips in the two hives as directed(4) total strips, in October 2002, and it got cold soon after. I was told not to try to remove them cause I will break up the cluster,they've been in there for three months now. Will this kill my bees? Its been below freezing for some time now and I'm afraid to disturb them.What should I do?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Location
    Birmingham, West Midlands, UK
    Posts
    751

    Post

    It won't harm the bees; the drawback of this is that longterm exposure to low levels of miticide encourages the development of resistant strains of mite. Put it down to experience, and if you're still going to use the stuff - there are alternatives - put it in a bit earlier next year.

    ------------------
    Regards,

    Robert Brenchley

    RSBrenchley@aol.com
    Birmingham UK

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
    Posts
    9,676

    Post

    Hello -

    We should first back up and address why the strips were put in so late. I don't know where you live, but any place that has cold winters will have a time frame that they will have to work within or the predicament you are in now will happen. Timing is very important when using any kind of chemical or drug treatment.

    About all you can do now is to wait till you get a warm enough day where the cluster breakes so you can remove the strips (55 degrees or above). I would at least get the two strips out of the top super now as they should be accessible by only removing the top cover.

    The strips won't hurt the bees, but it will produce resistant mites, which will hurt the bees!

    Regards,
    Barry

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    46,774

    Post

    I have had this problem before. Sometimes it's bad planning, sometimes it's just unpredicatable weather.

    Some of the latest studies are suggesting that it's a change in the way Apistan is manufactured, not mite resistance, that causes it to not work like it used to.

    Either way you do what you have to. It won't harm the bees. At least not in the short run.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Fremont, New Hampshire, USA
    Posts
    695

    Post

    Michael,
    "Some of the latest studies are suggesting that it's a change in the way Apistan is manufactured, not mite resistance, that causes it to not work like it used to."

    Please, can you cite some of these studies.
    Very interested. I lost just about every colony that I owned these past few weeks
    and was wondering if it was from having
    a Apistan resistanced mite or a bad batch
    of Apistan.
    Also wondering, if it is "bad Apistan"
    is there any recourse for those of us that lost our hives?

    I asked serval other beekeepers in my area
    and they are not reporting such drastic losses, or they're lying!
    TIA
    Dave


    [This message has been edited by The Honey House (edited December 29, 2002).]

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Dousman,Wi.U.S.A.
    Posts
    209

    Post

    Dave: Curious for more info regarding your losses. Can you give us some background on the strength, age, amount of honey harvest last year, etc. of the lost hives. Also what has your winter been like there. Here in S.E. Wisconsin we are enjoying a really mild winter so far. Thanks, Karl

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Germany
    Posts
    17

    Post

    Hi, we have that problem with Apistan since 1998 in Germany and I asked the manufacturer last year what happen with the strips.
    The answer was that the mites are getting resistant and I should tread the bees with other things. The manufacturer is not willing to produce other medications for mite treatment in the future because of the developing costs and the high registrations fees in most parts of the world.
    Since last year I’m using Oxalic Acid and it works. The winter is a good time to treat the colonies and there is no resistant possible.
    For information go to the following website. http://www.members.shaw.ca/orioleln

    Greetings from Germany
    Heinrich

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    46,774

    Post

    I'll look some more for the references later. But the article I read (and this is from memory so I'm not certain of some of the details) was that some people with hives that they had just treated with newly manufactured Apistan without very good drop counts that they were calling "Apistan resistant" were then treated with some old Apistan (I'm thinking it was from the late 1980's but I could be mistaken on the date) and had the normal expected mite drop and cleared up those same "resitant" colonies.

    Their conclusion is that they believe the manufacturing process was somehow changed the current product is not as effective as it used to be.

    Since some hives still respond to the newly manufactured Apistan and some do not, it would make sense to say that there is some resitance though.

    I will look some more to try to find the article.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Fremont, New Hampshire, USA
    Posts
    695

    Post

    Michael, Thanks! I'll check back later to see any updates. Good Luck.

    Karl,
    9 out of 15 dead in my backyard
    5 dead out of 9 about ten miles down the road
    and then another yard where all 4 out of 4
    dead.
    strength, all looked good enough for the winter. This is my eleventh year so I can kind of guess their strength based upon previous years.

    age, some where from nucs in May and some where the parent colony. I think there might have been a swarm in the mix as well.
    And of course, it wasn't a swarm from any of my colonies!

    amount of honey harvest last year, well I took honey off of just about every hive.
    I left the top brood box quite full as I have found that this is about right for my area in Southern New Hampshire.

    Also what has your winter been like there,
    It's been cold! Really cold! November was
    very cold with a few nights of -2F and daily highs of around 15 or so. Quite uncommon for
    that time of the year.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Dousman,Wi.U.S.A.
    Posts
    209

    Post

    Dave: Thanks for the info. I feel for you buddy. Its tough to lose hives like that. I have 7 hives here that I pushed together in a line late in fall and insulated on north , east, and west sides along with the top. Open to the south. I'm crossing my fingers for early spring. Good luck . Karl

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,774

    Post

    Here are a couple of articles on the subject of changes or inconsistencies in Apistan.

    FLUVALINATE CONTENT OF APISTAN STRIPS http://www.nal.usda.gov/ttic/tektran...000093113.html

    http://apis.ifas.ufl.edu/apis98/pdf/apr_ap98.pdf

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Germany
    Posts
    17

    Post

    It is really bad to hear what happen with your bees. I’m reading my bee magazine from this month and there is an article about Perizin from Bayer (Cumafos). Warning to use it, many beekeepers in the northern part of Germany lost up to 80% of the colonies. Mites are resistant to Cumafos too.
    They recommend 2 treatments with oxalic acid seven day apart as soon as possible. Vaporizing oxalic crystals is the only way to save the rest of the bee colonies during the cold season. Colonies can be treated, as soon the temperature is approx 2 º– 3 º above the freezing point.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
    Location
    NE Calif.
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    Post

    Coumaphos has been in use in Germany for a lot longer than the USA.Resistance is just beginning to show up in those areas of the US where it has been in use the longest.So maybe another year or two,then look out.Forget Apistan,resistance is widespread.No alternative treatment will come close to these so keeping bees is going to get harder.Probably the acids will be the best bet,combined with bees that will at least put up some fight.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Lumberport, WV USA
    Posts
    71

    Post

    I think you are forgetting one of the best ways to control mites. FGMO...It works and without any problems of resistance. Check it out and see for yourself.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
    Location
    NE Calif.
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    Post

    Unfortunately,most of the hives I tried FGMO on broke down with varroa in late summer.I suppose it may have some value in areas where the bees arent constantly being re-infested,but it certainly did not work here!Too bad,as fogging is very quick to do.Used the cords too,but the labor involved makes that part of it too labor intensive on a large scale.I still think that it may have some value if essential oils could be mixed in,but that is an experiment for the future.I might just add,that a friend who used Check-mite on his thousands of hives didnt see a mite all summer.I didnt use it,and have lots of dead hives to prove it.My best advice is dont be too quick to accept 'internet alternatives' as fact.Do your own experiments as your circumstances may be vastly different than that of the people offering (sincerely) their solutions.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany
    Posts
    833

    Post

    Hi dharbert
    I can refer you to [Alpenlandische Bienenzeitung, Suedtiroler Imkerbote] which includes an article on the "Rodriguez Method".
    Test results from several bee-keeping institutes in German and Austria prove it is maybe a treatment but not effective.
    This is confirmed by and article in "Vida Apicola", a Spanish language bee-keeping magazine where the Varroa treatment is delivered by oil fog an by impregnated cords.

    Here a part from the summary of the Rodriguez test, he made the test and not an independent institute.
    “The test was performed with 10 colonies hived in Langstroth type hives equipped with 4mm hardware cloth bottom screens. Test results demonstrate that food grade mineral oil is an efficient, economic and non-contaminating acaricide, especially when integrated with other control methods.

    Dr. Pedro Pablo RODRIGUEZ made a test with only 10 colonies March-June 2001 and that means nothing. He needs test results at least from several hundreds or a few thousand colonies before he can give any comments in the direction to a recommended treatment.

    Here a answer from Dr. Liebig, Landesanstalt für Bienenkunde, Universität Hohenheim/Germany.

    “There are many possibilities to treat the bees without using chemicals like Cumafos, Apistan, Amitraz, Folbex or Gabon etc.
    The fogging method with food grade oil in not as effective like the natural acids, for example Formic Acid, Oxalic Acid, Lactic Acid, etc.”
    The oil fogging method has to bring a similar or close test result on 1500 hives or more before we can say, “it is a treatment”!

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
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    9,676

    Exclamation

    Alfred wrote:
    Vaporizing oxalic crystals is the only way to save the rest of the bee colonies during the cold season.

    FYI, oxalic is not approved for use in the U.S. It may work good, but like all chemicals, it too has a limited life of effectiveness on mites. We are already hearing of oxalic resistant mites from parts of Europe.

    Axtmann wrote:
    ""Rodriguez Method".
    Test results from several bee-keeping institutes in German and Austria prove it is maybe a treatment but not effective. This is confirmed by and article in "Vida Apicola", a Spanish language bee-keeping magazine where the Varroa treatment is delivered by oil fog an by impregnated cords."

    Give us the details of this test you mention. I don't believe one test proves anything. "Effective" is a subjective word. How is effective defined by this report? Was this study done exactly the same way the Rodriguez Method was done?

    Axtmann wrote:
    "Dr. Pedro Pablo RODRIGUEZ made a test with only 10 colonies March-June 2001 and that means nothing. He needs test results at least from several hundreds"

    Read his article in ABJ, January 2003. I see 2 other people tested his method. One with 400 hives and one with 135 hives, both from Spain.

    Axtmann wrote:
    "Here a answer from Dr. Liebig
    <snip>
    food grade oil in not as effective like the natural acids"

    If this statement is true, it's fine by me. If using FGMO allows one to forego using acids and the like, what a great result!

    Regards,
    Barry

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany
    Posts
    833

    Post


    Hi Barry, my first question is how long do you keep bees?
    In your letter you mixed lots of thinks up but that’s ok, I will give you “only an idea” what the fact is. The Internet is a great thing and all you have to do, go and search und you will find answers for all your questions.
    I know, the treatment with oxalic acid is not allowed in the US, but how about your oil fogging is this government approved?
    There is no Oxalic Acid resistance possible; it works by destroying the mite's suction ability, stopping it from feeding from the bee. Effectively, the mite starves to death. Oxalic Acid is an organic acids and not an synthetic acaricid, it is an inexpensive alternative to synthetic acaricides for the control of parasitic mites in honey bees (Amrine et al. 1996, Imdorf & Bogdanov 1999, Imdorf et al. 1999). They are also less of a health risk compared to synthetic acaricides which may contaminate honey bee products
    Oxalic Acid has the permission in Finland, Switzerland and Austria. We are using Oxalic Acid since approx 1985 and the German government accepts it because there are no delays in the honey, beeswax and propolis.
    Oxalic Acid is used in Russia at least since 1982 and western beekeepers thinking the Russian bees are resistant against the Varroa. Go to the following website and you can see a Russian Vaporizer. http://www.members.shaw.ca/orioleln

    Look at the Internet, Oxalic Acid is in many plants and we eat them every day.

    I give you a few samples:
    Vegetable/Oxalic acid (g/100 g) --- Amaranth/1.09 — Asparagus/0.13 --- Beans, snap/0.36 --- Beet leaves/0.61--- Broccoli/0.19 --- Brussels sprouts/0.36 --- Cabbage/0.10 --- Carrot/0.50 --- Cassava/1.26 --- Cauliflower/0.15 --- Celery/0.19 --- Chicory/0.21 --- Chives/1.48 --- Collards/0.45 --- Coriander/0.01 --- Corn, sweet/0.01 --- Cucumbers/0.02 --- Eggplant/0.19 --- Endive/0.11 --- Garlic/0.36 --- Kale/0.02 --- Lettuce/0.33 --- Okra/0.05 --- Onion/0.05 --- Parsley/1.70 --- Parsnip/0.04 --- Pea/0.05 --- Pepper/0.04 --- Potato/0.05 --- Purslane/1.31 --- Radish/0.48 --- Rutabaga/0.03 --- Spinach/0.97 --- Squash/0.02 --- Sweet potato/0.24 --- Tomato/0.05 --- Turnip/0.21 --- Turnip greens/.05.

    If you using FGMO is fine as long as your bees survive but be awake, loggermike worked with FGMO also and you can read what happen to his bees. He is not the only one, but most beekeepers are too proud to tell others when they made a mistake. I often heard, let them made their one experience.
    Alfred has right, the only way to tread the bees during the cold season is from the outside without opening the hives. Vaporize the acid and blow it slow in the hive. Without any brood it will kill up to 95% or more mites and after 7 days treat them again and you get almost all mites. There is no more treatment necessary before July or August but be careful and test the drone cells during the summer you’re not the only beekeeper in your area.

    I keeping bees since 1975 and fight the mites since 1981 I like to help beekeepers if they have trouble with there bees.


  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    The Scenic Flint Hills , KS
    Posts
    5,159

    Question

    Is oxalic acid available in the US? If so where or how do you get it?

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
    Location
    NE Calif.
    Posts
    2,361

    Post

    When I read all the great results of FGMO,my first thoughts were also "They will learn the hard way!" Especially when I see the flak that gets thrown at anyone who posts an opposing point of view on some forums.But beginners have a hard enough time as it is so I figured I would post my failure with it.Take it or leave it,I didnt have any axe to grind when I started and in fact was sure it would work.
    I am not going to recommend any 'unapproved treatments' but the Europeans have been way ahead of us all along on mite research ,and as our friends from Germany pointed out ,the information is freely available on the net.
    I have been at this for over 30 years and have seen it all,but varroa is the worst.
    ---Mike

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