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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Milton, Vermont
    Posts
    307

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    I am not concerned about time right now as I have only a few hives. I don't like the idea of treating with chemicals such as apistan, checkmite etc.
    I use SSB's and would like to know what treatment is the most efective and the least stressful for the bees, succrocide, oxalic fumes or drone brood foundation? I am also open to any other ideas. To date I haven't treated with anything but I find myself buying bees every spring now and that is getting old.
    It is what it is.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,925

    Post

    IMO small cell or natural sized cell is the best long term solution to the Varroa.

    If you want treatments, FGMO fog is a lot of labor but little impact on the bees. I have not tried sucrocide but it sounds like a lot of labor. I've used oxalic acid vapor in the fall after brood rearing stops and find one treatment can be very effective. I have not tried the drone magnet method. If the small cell wasn't working, I had considered it, but it never became a problem. It should work, but it's a big cost of resources to build a frame of drone brood. Basically a frame of honey and a frame of pollen and tying up a frame of nurse bees rearing them and keeping them warm for four weeks. That's a big investment for the bees. I haven't done powdered sugar, but people seem to think it's pretty effective.

    As you have discovered, if you keep them on large cell foundation and do nothing, the bees all die.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Evansville, IN, USA
    Posts
    2,837

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    Greetings Dwight,

    Here's a quote by MrBEE that might be helpful,

    "How do you know they need treatment if you don't count the mites? And how do you know the treament worked if you don't count the mites? Since even the most "hard chemical" solutions such as Apistan and CheckMite are now failing for many people, it is folly not to monitor the mite levels before and after the treatments. If you use alternative treatments, how do you know they work if you don't monitor before and after? And if you don't monitor, how do you know you aren't treating when you don't need to and contributing to the chemical resistance that is now rampant?

    The first necessity to controling the Varroa mites is to measure them. If you don't measure them you can't know when and if you need to treat with anything and if you do treat and you don't measure, you can't know if what you are using is working.

    If you want to keep your bees alive you need to learn to monitor Varroa mite levels."

    --------------------
    Michael Bush


    I have used Apistan, Oxalic Acid, Powdered Sugar, and Sucrocide. Based on ACTUAL mite fall numbers BEFORE and after application, I have seen that nothing works as well as Apistan.

    Dave W

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,925

    Post

    >I have seen that nothing works as well as Apistan.

    Unless you live here where it hardly works at all anymore.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Milton, Vermont
    Posts
    307

    Post

    Thanks for the help. Michael a couple more questions if I may. Can I purchase small cell foundation from any of the suppliers? I don't recall seeing it advertised anywhere. Also do you use the oxalic vapor late in the fall or just after first frost? I've looked at your post describing the vaporizer you made out of pipe, looks like an easy way to treat. Does the vapor have any adverse affect on the wax or the Bees? Does it leave any residue in the hive?
    It is what it is.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Raleigh, North Carolina
    Posts
    3,598

    Post

    Dwight

    Brushy Mountain has it on page 41 of the current catalog
    It's with the IPM stuff, not the other foundation

    Dave

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Milton, Vermont
    Posts
    307

    Post

    Thanks Dave, I think I will try it as I don't really like Chemicals.
    It is what it is.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,925

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    >Can I purchase small cell foundation from any of the suppliers? I don't recall seeing it advertised anywhere.

    http://www.dadant.com/catalog/advanced_search_result.php?osCsid=5e3b737857f29b25 e0f815b018eee689&search_in_description=1&keywords= small+cell&osCsid=5e3b737857f29b25e0f815b018eee689

    http://www.beeequipment.com/products...small+cell&t=a


    >Also do you use the oxalic vapor late in the fall or just after first frost?

    I look for brood rearing to stop. This is not so much a function of the temperatures as the length of the days. Usually a warm day in November is good.

    >I've looked at your post describing the vaporizer you made out of pipe, looks like an easy way to treat. Does the vapor have any adverse affect on the wax or the Bees?

    From the research I've seen I'd say it will kill open brood. I have not noticed any wear and tear on the bees. I have a four year old queen in a hive that's been treated with Oxalic about four times and she's still doing well. If you overdose it will kill the bees.

    >Does it leave any residue in the hive?

    A white powder is left when you are done. But Oxalic acid is a natural part of honey so reports are, there is no detectable residue in the honey.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    The Scenic Flint Hills , KS
    Posts
    5,159

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    >From the research I've seen I'd say it will kill open brood.

    :confused: Aaaa, Mike, would you clearify what you meant to say? I think you meant kill mites in open brood? I have seen nothing that would indicate that it kills brood when used in the prescribed mannor.
    Bullseye Bill in The Scenic Flint Hills , KS
    www.myspace.com/dukewilliam

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Milton, Vermont
    Posts
    307

    Post

    Thanks for your gentlemen. I do have screened bottom boards on all of my hives. This week I put the sticky boards in for a 24 hour period and was only able to find half a dozen mites on one board. My eye sight isn't the best. The mites I saw were still alive and moving a little so I was able to see them with a magnifying glass. There was a lot of debris on the boards so there may have been some dead mites that I couldn't see but I checked pretty closely.
    How many mites should I see before I become concerned and need to treat in some manner?
    It is what it is.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    45,925

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    12 might make me nervous but personally I wouldn't feel I had to treat until I was seeing more. The other issue is the trend and the number of bees in the hive. A booming hive with 12 mites in 24 hours does not have as much of a mite load as a strugging nuc with a drop of 12 mites in 24 hours. A hive with 12 mites in 24 hours after brood rearing stops in the fall is even less mites in the hive because there are none on the cells. A drop of 12 mites that goes up to 24 and then 48 and then 96 in subsequent weeks is looking like it may need some help.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Milton, Vermont
    Posts
    307

    Post

    Thanks Michael,
    I will check them weekly. I am hoping I don't need to treat until fall at which time I will treat with oxalic vapor with a home made vaporizor like the one you illustrate on this site.
    It is what it is.

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