This year I'm doing a comparasion between the NWC's from Strachan and Russians from Kelley.

In April, I'll have 4 russian colonies and 4 NWC's all queens are production queens. My base to compare with will be 2 Italian hives one from York Stock and one from a local producer in TN. (both have been treated for Trachael Mites and Varroa)

I'm looking to compare mite resistance by doing a perodic count of natural mite (Varroa) drops throughout the summer (24 hours every week) of all 10 hives using the screened bottom boards. Also monthly Trachael Mite examinations (using HS science department equipment).

I'm looking for the following:

1. Which stock will have the best resistance over the season?
2. Which stock will have the best wintering?
3. Which stock will produce the better surplus?

This will have to be a two year comparison because the russians will be packages this year and one of the NWC will be from a split.

In my little exercise on observation, do any of you have any recommendations or experiences that would help me in the exercise?

All input will be considered. I start the observations after 17 April 2003. I intend to update this thread as it developes over time.