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  1. #41
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany
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    829

    Post

    Bob Harrison

    >>Larva are very sensitive to strong doses of both OA & formic acid.

    Have you ever treated with OA, trickling, spraying or evaporation?

    >>How do you keep from overdosing with the crack pipe?

    Do you know how to handle a so-called crack pipe? When preparing a meal are you mixing everything together or do you follow some instructions (recipe)?

    >>What level of control do you get with the crack pipe?

    I used a crack pipe and the best result during brood free time was 80+ %. Found some mites (2-7 after opening approx 100 cells) the following April in drone brood. NO colony with 0 mites.

    Now I work with the electric vaporizer, one treatment without brood (swarm or winter treatment) approx 95+ %. After a second treatment …the colony is almost mite free. 2003 and 2004 found first mites (0-3 after opening approx 250 cells) the following June in drone brood.
    Some colonies with 0 mites.

    >>What was your 24 hour drop before treatment?

    This is IMO totally unimportant.

    >>After treatment?

    That’s important, I monitor the mite drop on paper under a screen.

    >>Ever inhale a big dose of OA fumes from the pipe?

    Beekeeper should use a mask or electric vaporizer with a long extension cord and stay away.

  2. #42
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    The Scenic Flint Hills , KS
    Posts
    5,159

    Post

    >Ever inhale a big dose of OA fumes from the pipe?

    Yep. That's why I like the electric model, I can stand way back up wind and flip the switch. The only time I can smell the vapor is when I pull the burner and reseal the hive, and by then it's a very weak smell.

    The burner only holds about 1/2 teaspoon, enough for three mediums or two deeps. Overdosing is not likely unless you are treating just one medium.

    Also the burner sublimates(?) the vapor into a finer particulate than can be achieved in a crack pipe. With the use of the electric burner, the switch is thrown for a set amount of time and the open pan can be easily seen when extracted from the hive for checking to see if all the crystal has melted in that time period.

    posted November 21, 2004 05:10 PM
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    My neighbor up at the farm, Prairie Girl, has been interested in keeping bees since she found a colony for me in a farmhouse that was being demolished last year. She ordered her first two packages this last spring and we have removed bees from other old farmhouses and I've taken her extra swarms as well.
    She has been very diligent about treating with oxalic acid and counting mites. The following graph tells a very telling tale about the way oxalic kills mites, both in the rate drop by day and by the treatment frequency.

    Even more can be assertained by understanding what kind of bees each colony has, where they come from, age of colony, and type of equipment she is using.

    Hive 1 is a removal she did from a farmhouse. It is a two medium box configuration, started in July. They made their own queen in transfered comb that was later removed or moved up and is now only being used as honey stores.

    Hive 2 is a package from B Weaver, All Americans in a four medium configuration.

    Hive 3 is a package from B Weaver, All Americans in three medium configuration.

    Hive 4 is a split from an abondoned hive, it went queenless and I later donated two swarms to strengthen. It is now three mediums and one deep.

    Hive 5 is a swarm I gave her in a two medium configuration started last May.

    Guess by looking at the numbers which hive has the drawn comb. The only anomolie is the last treatment and hive 3.

    Of note; the second and third day had the highest drops, and the second and third treatments also had the highest drops.


    Spacing did not transfer well, so I added periods to space the numbers for easier reading. Read the chart as Hive, #, and counts the following six days, and the total for that hive for the week. The numbers below are the total number of mites for that day.

    Pay no attention to the periods, they are for spacing only.

    Sept. 26
    Hive 1 40 168 .35 23 .6 .6 278
    Hive 2 10 .60 .13 18 22 14 137
    Hive 3 50 136 .72 39 41 24 362
    Hive 4 50 .69 186 84 80 81 550
    Hive 5 57 .84 .15 17 .1 .3 177

    ......207 517 321 181 150 128 1504


    Oct. 4
    Hive 1 .73 111 .65 .32 17 15 313
    Hive 2 168 172 108 .62 21 20 551
    Hive 3 210 188 118 .59 21 22 618
    Hive 4 125 151 .86 137 93 56 648
    Hive 5 100 .31 .31 ..9 .4 .2 177

    .......676 653 408 299 156 115 2307


    Oct.11
    Hive 1 .31 .37 .27 .10 ..3 11 119
    Hive 2 .80 260 112 .53 .23 20 548
    Hive 3 140 310 .76 .29 .21 14 590
    Hive 4 .60 192 246 178 140 93 909
    Hive 5 .29 .34 .20 ..6 ..4 .1 .94

    .......340 833 481 276 191 139 2260


    Oct.17
    Hive 1 .30 .35 ..8 ..4 .0 .1 .78
    Hive 2 116 175 .80 .43 26 .9 449
    Hive 3 .93 115 .67 .25 35 12 347
    Hive 4 143 268 183 173 92 31 890
    Hive 5 ..6 ..5 ..3 ..1 .0 .0 .15

    ......388 598 341 246 153 53 1779


    NOV.14
    Hive 1 ..6 ..6 ..2 ..3 .0 .0 .17
    Hive 2 .30 112 .84 .28 18 20 292
    Hive 3 141 188 117 .68 26 .9 549
    Hive 4 .47 .91 157 106 38 24 463
    Hive 5 ..2 ..2 ..1 ..0 .1 .0 ..6

    ........226 399 361 205 83 53 1327


    I tried to fix the spacing, I give up.

    http://www.beesource.com/cgi-bin/ubb...=000291#000000
    Bullseye Bill in The Scenic Flint Hills , KS
    www.myspace.com/dukewilliam

  3. #43
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Odessa, Missouri
    Posts
    629

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    Axtmann,
    I do research which always pisses off those which don't. How can you tell how well a treatment works if you do not know the varroa load before you start. Amateur!

    Yes I have used and seen all methods in use.

    Primative at best! Will drop some varroa.

    Read carefully:
    A 98% chemical strip will drop around 3,000 varroa *THE FIRST DAY* in August in our area. From the posted information by Bullseye OA method falls way short.

    I assume you are a small beekeeper Axtmann as I would need fifty miles of extension cord to use a electric vaporisor on my yards.

    I am not saying OA is not a uaeful tool for beekeeping. Only trying to seperate the BS from the truth.

    OA and formic in *strong* doses kills larva in summer weather! Been there and done that. Bill R. (mitegone) says the ideal situation with formic acid is to have the level so some larva is killed for highest varroa control. If no larva are killed your formic level is too low.

    I believe the same might be true for OA (but only my opinion).

    If OA was the only method available to me perhaps I would use in conjunction with IPM methods.

    Formic and OA are more alike than not! Nasty stuff to work with and breathe!

    OA only provided *enough* control in our research in the broodless period like I said earlier. OA did provide a decent control then (November) but we are treating *NOW* to save hives from varroa.

    November is too late. Hives over threshold then! All methods will NOT WORK!

    OA did not provide enough control this time of year for us (and is a big hassle) to keep the hives going until November.

    Antoher big waste of tome for us was fogging with mineral oil but that's another story.

    I believe we have a far more serious varroa problem in the U.S.than Germany. Terry Brown (Brown's Bees Australia) was at my place for three days last month. Terry said only in the U.S. does he see as serious of a varroa problem.

    Denis Anderson has Put an ID on many halotypes of varroa. We now know Varroa j. is not even a pest to the A. mellifera. Varroa d. is. Perhaps your varroa halotype is different than ours?

    Sincerely,
    Bob Harrison

    "emailed from the U.S. varroa fighting front lines"
    Bob Harrison

  4. #44
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,390

    Post

    >A 98% chemical strip will drop around 3,000 varroa *THE FIRST DAY* in August in our area.

    Wow! I haven't seen those kind of numbers of Varroa since I regressed. I do remember seeing that many before regression.

    From my experience with OA vapor on broodless hives, if you do two treatments in the fall there are virtually no mites left in the hive. I can't find any from natural drop, from sugar rolls, or from opening drone brood in the spring. The inspector from the Nebraska Department of Agriculture could not find any either.

    And the OA only killed 100 mites or less per hive total over two treatments over two weeks. NOT 3000 on the first day.

    >I assume you are a small beekeeper Axtmann as I would need fifty miles of extension cord to use a electric vaporisor on my yards.

    Most use a 12 volt battery, not a 120 volt extention cord.

    >Formic and OA are more alike than not! Nasty stuff to work with and breathe!

    But no worrying about the temps with OA. Since you're not relying on ambient temps to evaporate it it works in any temperature. I also have not heard of queen losses from OA nor have I experienced them. I have read about them with formic acid.

    >"emailed from the U.S. varroa fighting front lines"

    I'm really enjoying not having to fight them anymore. [img]smile.gif[/img]
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  5. #45
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Odessa, Missouri
    Posts
    629

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    I agree a big difference exists between the world of hobby and the professional beekeeper.

    Let me drop a semi load in next door and your hives get reinfested and see how well your OA and small cell fairs.

    You walk a thin line at best.

    keeping bees in remote areas on permanant locations is EASY!

    For a real test drop your hives into an area of thousands of hives. See how well they handle varroa after being moved 4-5 thousand miles a year and loaded and unloaded 10-20 times.

    Maybe I am on the wrong list but I have got my direct experience to share. Different though it may be from others.

    I make a living from bees. I can't afford to place my livlyhood on methods put forth by those which do not.

    I do believe commercial beekeepers in Canada use OA but the time of year is different from what I have heard Allan Dick say. The broodless period has started.

    Any way I have now only got over a hundred of those hives which are not varroa tolerant. The rest are! By this time next year my worries with varroa will be history. I can sit in the easy chair while you guys use and breathe those OA fumes. others wait for the next chemical coming off the presses.

    Reinfestation does not seem to effect my varroa tolerant line.


    I might suggest placing a *bee use only*label on the crack pipe for OA. Only concerned for your well being!
    Bob Harrison

  6. #46
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,390

    Post

    >Let me drop a semi load in next door and your hives get reinfested and see how well your OA and small cell fairs.

    I have no experience with those kinds of conditions (nor do I want to) and I have no doubt that it would be a lot of pressure and likley too much Varroa pressure for any stable system to handle.

    >keeping bees in remote areas on permanant locations is EASY!

    That is probably true.

    >For a real test drop your hives into an area of thousands of hives. See how well they handle varroa after being moved 4-5 thousand miles a year and loaded and unloaded 10-20 times.

    I'm sure the stress of the trip won't help, but I'm guessing most of the pressure is the thousands of hives that are acting as Varroa breeding farms.

    >Maybe I am on the wrong list but I have got my direct experience to share. Different though it may be from others.

    I certainly did not mean to downplay the validity of what you have to share. I think this is the right list.

    >Reinfestation does not seem to effect my varroa tolerant line.

    Sounds like the right track.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  7. #47
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Odessa, Missouri
    Posts
    629

    Post

    Well said! Hope the heat has finnaly broken for you!

    Off to pull another load of supers.
    Race against time to get things done before the snow flies!
    Bob Harrison

  8. #48
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    medesto,indiana,usa
    Posts
    257

    Post

    No its not Rocket science, Rob. Thats why it works.

  9. #49
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    wills point,tx,usa
    Posts
    130

    Post

    rob, do you still get 3000+ drop count in your tollerant line (and the bees tollerate that load) or do the bees kill/remove/supress the varoa and you get lower drop counts w/ the strips? also, how has resistance,if any, affected your drop counts? what brand of varoa control do you use?
    thanks,
    martin
    as for the original question:
    as a hobbiest (<50hives), i havent treated or done any counts for the past 12 years. however, as i am planning to expand and rely more on the income of these hives, i am also concidering treating with something, i am also pallitizing and will construct pallets w/ sbb.

  10. #50
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Odessa, Missouri
    Posts
    629

    Post

    I have not used strips in my hives in four years.

    I still get those kind of drops when checkmite is working and used in another beekeepers commercial yards. His hive loss last year was in the 80-90% range from varroa and PMS. He has no Russian or varroa tolerant hives.(or not very many yet)

    Average varroa drops.

    Varroa tolerant hives run 0-3 mites in spring and 0-20 in fall (natural fall).

    Russian/Russian run around 17-20 in fall and 3-5 in spring.

    F1 Russians run 20-40 in fall. 3-10 in spring.

    I am still running some Italians from Ray O. out of California which are not varroa tolerant and need treatment. The queens will be two years old next spring. I will test when the supers come off and treat the ones with a high varroa count with Api Life Var.
    Bob Harrison

  11. #51
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Perkasie, PA
    Posts
    1,998

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    While I realize that my hobbiest methods will not work in many commercial operations, I've been very sucessful using SMR/Russian bees (Glenn Apiaries), SBB, and breaking the brood cycle for about 10-14 days in both the Spring and Fall (queen caging, splitting). For the other hobby keepers out there....Try it, its fun and gives you an excuse to practice queen location. As for PMS, I don't think they know yet wether the mites are a vector (in which case mite levels are less critical) or wether mites exacerbate the viral diseases. Could be both I suppose. The USDA and Ag schools around the world are doing some really nice work on all of these issues. We owe them a debt of gratitude. Terramycin treatment helps greatly with PMS, and nobody is sure why. I suspect that foulbrood and PMS occur together, confounding the correct diagnosis of either.

  12. #52
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Odessa, Missouri
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    629

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    Sounds like you have really got your act together with your bees.

    I had not heard that Terramycin would work for a virus or in fact any antibiotic would work. Will try and see. Being from the show-me state I have to see for myself if a method works.Thanks for the tip!

    Norman Carrick & Brenda Ball (U.K.) have said antibiotics have not worked for PMS in their testing and also that a hive free of virus can handle high loads of varroa. Through another beekeeper we have sent many samples to the U.K. for virus testing and ID.

    PMS is often thought to be foulbrood by the hobby beekeeper but not by those dealing with large varroa problems. I have never seen foulbrood & PMS in the same hive at the same time but could happen in hives of those not keeping a close eye on their bees.

    PMS occurs in most cases when a hive is over threshold for treatment. Huge varroa population. but was not the case in hives I went through the last two years in Florida. I saw PMS in hives with below threshold levels of varroa.

    Being on the varroa front lines and doing varroa research I have more direct experience than most. Even many of our USDA-ARS researchers. Only a few deal directly with varroa & PMS issues.

    It amazes me when I wait in line at a meeting to speak with a researcher and they spend the time picking my mind. Commercial beekeepers when they have a problem most times call a fellow commercial beekeeper rather than the bee labs which is part of the problem and keeps the bee lab in the dark on many issues.

    We do not have six weeeks to wait for a solution.

    I also thank the bee labs both in the U.S. and around the world for their fine work. They should also be thankful each day I am not their boss!
    Bob Harrison

  13. #53
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Anchorage, Alaska
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    1,649

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    >Terramycin treatment helps greatly with PMS, and nobody is sure why.

    As I recall Dewey Caron also mentioned that at a talk he gave a couple of years or so ago.

  14. #54
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Perkasie, PA
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    With regard to the above statement about commercial beekeepers vs. researchers, I think that I have an answer. It seems like an increasing amount of bee extension and research money is diverted away from field research and diagnostics and into cell/molecular biology. I even know of one bee virus researcher who has never opened a hive in her life! Wheras you might be concerned primarily with "how much does it cost/will it work", most biologists are interested in advancing knowledge and getting more grant money (not necessarily in that order). If I had a problem with 1000 hives with PMS or even low production, the local fruit fly geneticist would not be my first resource either (this website might be).

  15. #55
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Anchorage, Alaska
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    1,649

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    Terramycin and PMS. Does it help?

    This URL from MAAREC says it seems to:
    www.ento.psu.edu/MAAREC/pdfs/Varroa_Mites_PMP1.pdf

    “Although we do not understand why, treating varroa-infested colonies with an antibiotic such as oxytetracycline (Terramycin) seems to help them survive and perform better. Antibiotics are effective in treating bacterial diseases, such as European foulbrood, but are unlikely to have a direct effect on the virus infections common with mite infestations. Even so, oxytetracycline treatments seem to offer some advantage to colonies with varroa infestations.”

    This URL from Cornell says it doesn’t:
    http://www.masterbeekeeper.org/B_files/disease1.htm

    “Brood symptoms are highly variable, and are often difficult to distinguish from EFB and AFB; however, treatment with terramycin (TM) does not eliminate this condition.”

    I guess it just goes to show--don’t believe everything read off the internet.

  16. #56
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Odessa, Missouri
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    629

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    PMS is not fully understood. The U.K. lab found three different virus in our PMS samples. I can't see (my opinion) Terra controlling virus but perhaps another form of problem is at work which we do not yet fully understand and the terra works for the problem.

    For years a hive with PMS was always on its death bed. Different now as I have been seeing hives with a medium varroa infestation with PMS but only in the last two years.

    I never saw a Russian/Russian hive with PMS. I have seen Russian F1 hives with deformed drones and workers from varroa but still no PMS.

    I guess now is the time to drop the PMS bombshell:

    virus spores are similar to nosema spores using nosema as an example. Several of us believe that once a comb is contaminated with virus spores (hardy and a million can fit on the head of a pin)
    then when the new swarm is hived on a PMS deadout then when varroa levels rise high the virus becomes active. Our research (although not published) supports our hypothesis.


    Aspera (internet name) do I know you?
    Check yes or no:
    yes----
    no----

    "What we don't know is so vast it makes what we do know seem absurd" Bob Harrison
    Bob Harrison

  17. #57
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
    Location
    NE Calif.
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    2,290

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    >>virus spores are similar to nosema spores using nosema as an example. Several of us believe that once a comb is contaminated with virus spores (hardy and a million can fit on the head of a pin)
    then when the new swarm is hived on a PMS deadout then when varroa levels rise high the virus becomes active. Our research (although not published) supports our hypothesis.

    Now that agrees with what Axtmann our friend from Germany says.I asked for some documentation on the virus being viable the next season in comb,but none was forthcoming.Since I (and I suppose most) just re-stock a varroa killed deadout the next spring(have done hundreds)I noticed exactly the same scenario.The dead brood is cleaned out by the new split,and only when varroa is allowed to build back up will the new brood become diseased.I assumed this was because the varroa and the bees themselves are carrying the virus-not the comb.So
    can anyone point me to research that shows the viability of viruses in dead brood from the previous season?
    By the way,antibiotics was the first thing I tried for pms.I never saw anything encouraging from doing so.

  18. #58
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Anchorage, Alaska
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    1,649

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    >Several of us believe..
    I think those are the magic words. Your 'bombshell' may have some validity or then again it might not. I hope people don't end up jumping to conclusions.

  19. #59
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Odessa, Missouri
    Posts
    629

    Post

    Although I have done many posts on the internet and written many articles for the bee magazines my interest is in helping commercial beekeeping.

    We can get our honey from other places (over half is already) and the hobby beekeeper should always be able to buy a package (consider the tropical fish industry. When Starsky & Hutch (pet fish)are floating you simply buy others).

    For every successful beekeeper there are at least ten that have tried and given up beekeeping for various reasons.

    When the commercial migratory beekeeper hangs up his/her hat our food supply is in trouble. A steady number of commercial migratory beekeepers have been leaving the industry since WW II .

    A congressman(all would know the name) has contacted me wanting a person to educate commercial beekeepers on ways to be successful in todays fast pace beekeeping world. My name was given to him by three different commercial beekeepers.

    I am thinking about his offer of government funds to use and free rein over the project.but I am retired (although still on a commercial level).

    Most commercial beekeepers are in beekeeping simply because (like me) beekeeping has been in the family for generations.

    The problem facing beekeepers today is simple. You can not keep bees on a large scale like MY Grandpa or the old masters did (although a few on the list seem to think so. perhaps on a small scale but will not work on a large scale). I keep quiet as I am on here to learn also but practices not based on sound beekeeping practice are sometimes put forth.

    Still reading Dick?

    The test on the hypothesis of virus reinfection in the next swarm installed is now in its second test. 1,000 PMS boxes set up as 500 hives. I hope I am wrong but glad another beekeeper is seeing the same thing even if he is in Germany.

    I have dropped new information many times (which Dick knows from BEE-L) that produced a roar from the crowd.

    consider:

    Give me one reason why virus spores would not live on in the deadout comb? Thats what spores do (nosema & foulbrood)
    Bob Harrison

  20. #60
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Perkasie, PA
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    1,998

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    No, Rob, my given name is Hal and you don't know me, although I'm pleased to make your acquintance. As for the idea of tetracycline used for PMS, I would point out that PMS does not equal a viral infection, but rather a constellation of hive symptoms. "Shipping fever" is a virally/stress induced disease of cattle that is treated with tetracyclines. The reason for this (aside from the fact that it works) is that an animal weakened by a virus is highly susceptible to infection by bacteria that are not normally considered pathenogenic. Infectious disease is always caused by host/environment/pathogen interactions. I'm not saying that tetracylcines are a magic bullet for mites, but rather that they can be used to ameliorate some of the symtoms of PMS. Should they be used? Well, I don't know. That is a decision that may change based on the price of honey, residue issues and antibiotic resistance concerns. This pattern reoccurs again and agian in animal health industries. e.g. BVD of cattle: TGE, rotovirus and PRRS in pigs: many, many viral diseases of poultry.
    I will reiterate that I am a small scale hobbiest, keeping bees for the love of bees. I'm just suggesting that tetracycline may be of benefit in PMS, not that it is wise or economical to use it. Are the researchers at Cornell wrong. No. Just be sure to carefully examine their experimental design and see how it compares to your apiary/colony conditions.

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