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Thread: My FGMO results

  1. #1
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    Nov 2002
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    I was very intrigued when I learned about about using the fogger and the soaked cords. However, after two months of two-week treatments my mite problem is worse than ever. I started using the sticky board the same time I started fogging so I don't know what the varroa numbers were before. A recent visual examination showed ongoing infestation. I bought some Apistan stripes from my Bee club yesterday as I do not feel the fogging is helping. Am I being too hasty? Should I try fogging more often?

  2. #2
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    Feb 2002
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    Dear Pogue and other FGMO followers.
    You are being the victim of your own bees. I have posted recently on the forum about the problem beekeepers have with foraging bees
    that visit infested/dieng hives. The bees visit weak colonies to steal their honey and get a nasty load of mites for their rewward. This fact puzzled me also for a long time. I kept seeing increased mite rates in the late months of the year *Spetember/October) and could not understand why my bees had suddenly become loaded with mites. I Suspected that this had to have a simple explanation and designed a system for testing my suspicions. I merely placed dabs of paint (from automobile touch paint vials). A different color for each of my test hives. Sometime later that day, I opened the control hives, and lo and behold, there was my answer. The control hives looked like a rainbow of colors. Of course, I visited my test hives after that and noticed that the bees with dabs of paint on their wings were carrying mites on them. Not nurse bees as they should be, but foraging bees.
    I would like to suggest to those who are fogging to start fogging their bees once a week during these Fall months to take care of your marauding bees with their "guest" mites. This is probably a similar situation for all beekeepers and will most likely account for massive deaths of hives during late fall and winter even for beekeepers who had healthy hives earlier in the year. It is not that your system of treatment is failing, the trouble is due to massive introduction of mites from dieng colonies.
    I am working with beekeepers who have started the once week fogging sytem and their counts have dwindled down to nothing. Please let me know how you fare after you try it.
    Best regards.
    Dr. Rodriguez

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
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    Texarkana, TX
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    Howdy Pogue --

    I have used the fogger for two full years
    now. Last strip was used in Nov 2000. Very
    Few mites now. I try to fog once a week in early spring, then every two weeks in summer, then back to once a week in the
    fall as brood raising diminishes. Here in southwest Arkansas, fogging is done all winter (any time bees are flying and not clustered).

    In swarming season I capture as many warms
    from ferile bees as possible because of the
    natural resistance they have developed. I
    also remove a lot of colonies from walls for
    the same reasons. I notice that these captured colonies have a lot of mites, so
    it takes several foggings to get them under
    control.

  4. #4
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    It seem to me the concept of "natural resistence" is contrary to the concept of being heavily infested with mites. If feral colonies are heavily infested, how can we say they have "natural resistence". I realize some are surviving, but maybe that is in spite of their lack of resistance to mites and because of their ability to succeed in other ways.

  5. #5
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    Jun 2002
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    Drums, PA, USA
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    Natural resistance, I think depends on where the nest is located. I removed a nest from a barn, and on from a house. The one in the house, located itself between the studs in the wall, and mites just fell to the bottom and climbed back up. The one in the barn, was located much higher, and the base of the nest was almost like having screen in a way. I saw no mites, but that does not mean there were none. Like I said, if the mites fall off, and can't reattach, that is half the battle. And as Dee says, the bees were smaller in size, not 4.9, but close. The drones were much larger too. That also plays a role in the area of mite reproduction. Some things to think about.
    As far as fogging goes, It seems to be a quick fix, but natural resistance, with grooming behavior, and pupal development I think will be the final answers. But how does one go about achieving that....

    ------------------
    Dale Richards
    Dal-Col Apiaries
    Drums, PA

  6. #6
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    Sep 2002
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    West Harrison, NY, USA
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    I think "natural resistance" is precisely to be able to fight a succesful battle with whatever weapons. One of them may be to be impervious to the present mites, so that mites stay around (heavy infection) but don't affect the bees too much, hence survival. Another one would be to be better at grooming the mites off. Another might be to start visiting certain flower that may contain some natural miticide. Another one is to naturally regress to small size cells. And another one migt be a behavioral thing like learning to consistently choose places like Dale's barn bees. The latter obviously would be of no help to comercial beekeeping.

    Jorge

  7. #7
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    Maybe they are surviving because they have a good queen, good nectar and pollen available, they lucked into a good location and genetics has nothing to do with it. I'm only saying this because a heavy infestation of mites seems contray to mite resistance to me.

  8. #8
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    Hi folks.
    I do not want to sound like the person who boasts as a "know-it-all" so please bear in mind that I am only trying to provide a bit of information about my personal understanding of bee mite behavior.
    I think that all of the participants on this forum have a genuine concern about mite populations and naturally are trying to report their observations and at the same time proposing their "ideas" as to why that is so.
    I think that some are confusing resistance as such. In my humble opinion, mite resistance can be developed via several ways or means: genetic or mechanic (although I do not like the term "mechanic", I am forced to employ it. I would love to say "manual" but I am sure that I would catch a lot flak if I used the term manual because a lot of people would jump at me to let me know that bees do not have hands). There is a bit of exageration on this aspect, but I guess that there might be someone inclined to do it!
    Genetic resistance: this is a trait that the bees develop by changes in their genes through exposure to mites. This fact has been proven and is actually being utilized by some beekeepers who have developed strains of bees with this quality (or naturally developed strains). There is difficulty in this method as a cure for bee mites. It will take a very long time before bees develop total genetic resistance to the mites, if it ever occurs. One reason for this is that it costs money and another is beekeepers' preference for their favorite strain of bees.
    Mechanic: This method is based on the fact that mites are removed or fall off the bees during the phoretic phase. There is genetic behavior involved in some strains of bees that remove the mites, or damage the mites with their mouth parts. Another factor in this area is remooval of the mites via substances that interfere with their ability to sustain a hold on the surface of the bees causing them to fall off. Examples: F G M O and powdered sugar. Small cell size and drone trapping could be listed also as mechanical methods of providing means for eliminating mites. While there are races of bees that naturaly build their cells in small sizes, the natural tendency for bees is to produce larger cell sizes because that is their natural way of storing their honey. It goes with the honey bee's ability to do best what they do, produce as much honey as they can. Production of drones is another natural tendency of honey bees to preserve their species and man can induce drone production to take advantage of the fact that mites have a drone "preference" for their development. Again, by increasing the number of drone cell combs in a given hive would be a mechanical maneuver by the beekeeper. The bees would not build excessive drone cells just because they have mites.

    I sincerely hope that there is no confusion with the word resistance relating to the resistance that mites develop to synthetic miticides. This fact works in the opposite direction, it increases mite populations.

    While increased mite populations in our hives might be due to "lack of resistance" to the mites, let us not forget that there are proven factors that influence mite populations. As I have posted previously, it took me a while to understand and to interpret the reason for sudden mite increases during the later part of the summer in hives that had shown small or no mite infestation before. As I stated before, I devised a test for testing one source of such heavy infestations: Bees from healthy treated colonies rob weak, sick dieing colonies and together with the honey they steal bring home a massive load of mites. This is not because the bees have or lack resistance to the mites, this is just because they are being expossed to huge mite populations where they become infested. Of course if these "imported" mites are not dealt with promptly, they will reproduce in their new home like wild fire. The host hive do not have the ability to cope with them. It is at this stage where the beekeeper must be aware of what is happening to take additional means to treat his hives.
    In my research group we have dealt with this situation by increasing the number of emulsion soaked cords and by stepping up the fogging schedule.
    I am sure that someone will object to this recommendation claiming that it represents too much labor. My reply is that if we want to have healthy bees, we have to treat them. If it takes additional treatments, so be it. Hopefylly, some day we will be back to years past when there were no mites and beekeeping was more profitable (for those who keep bees for comercial purposes) and more enjoyable for the rest of us.
    My apologies for the long post.
    Best regards.
    Dr. Rodriguez

    [This message has been edited by Dr. Pedro Rodriguez (edited November 20, 2002).]

  9. #9
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    Jan 2003
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    pogue wrote
    after two months of two-week treatments my mite problem is worse than ever. I started using the sticky board the same time I started fogging so I don't know what the varroa numbers were before. A recent visual examination showed ongoing infestation. I bought some Apistan stripes from my Bee club yesterday as I do not feel the fogging is helping. Am I being too hasty?

    pogue, I think you are doing the right thing here. The priority is to get the mites in your hives under control. Apistan will do that quickly, easily, and cheaply. Keep monitoring the mite load with the sticky board until low mite load is achived, then go about your FGMO hive treatments to maintain that level. With the mite loads controled and hives being monitored, you will be able to switch back to Apistan immediatly if mite levels start to flare up again. I would advise not to use FGMO as your only treatment at this point becasue the survival of your colonies are at stake. FGMO hive treatments arn't a sure fire mite treatment. There is no hard scientific data that proves its effectivness. Until you get hard science infrount of you, treat with the proven mite treatment. Don't risk the health of your hives.

  10. #10
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    Dec 2002
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    Germany
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    Hi Ian, that’s the first normal word I heard.
    I had the same problem like pogue an all I heard was “have don this or did you this or you must have don a mistake?????” “how often did you treat, and did you used the cord????”
    The last thing was the re infection from other hives. “That’s the reason of your trouble not the fogging”.
    I tell you what, I have no beekeeper or beehives closer than 10km and there is no such a big re “infection” possible I had. How many cords should I place in the hives? A second, third or a couple more cords? Fogging twice the week?
    I know, drones frying up to 40 km but they are not stealing honey from infected hives like bees. We all have re infection in the hives and there is no way out.

    I’m using now other treatments and they “working”. If I go longer with FGMO the next question would be… “How long have you bin on holyday or have you bin sick so you could not treat you bees???” ….oh this is the reason of your problem.


  11. #11
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    Since I have heard from people who have used the FGMO treatment for years with success and I have heard for some who are not having success it's only reasonable to ask what the differences are. This is not an accusation that people who are having failures are incompetent or that they are or are not following the standard directions.

    I think it would be helpful to track down why some succeed and others fail. There must be some difference either in application or in climate or in other managment of the bees that would cause the difference in effectiveness.

    There are people using Apistan with success and people using Apistan with failures. Again, I think we need to find out why. We are currently assuming resistance to the Apistan, but maybe there are other factors.

    I don't know of any treatment without residue, side effects and failures. I know that will bring a storm of people saying their method does not, but essential oils do, FGMO gets left in the wax, Oxalic acid is left in the hive in higher amounts that are normal.


  12. #12
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    Dec 2002
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    Germany
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    Michael what are you talking about?
    What dos it mean, what is high and what is normal?

    >>Oxalic acid is left in the hive in higher amounts that are normal.

  13. #13
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    Mar 2000
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    Sequim / Wa / USA
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    Alfred
    Drones may or not fly 40 kilometers ,but that does not mean the do not carry mites to wherever they decide to be welcome , thus reinfecting the specific colony.
    I have not seen any research data telling me about the drones being impervious to mite transport . I think you should go and inform yourself a little more . The argument that the FGMO tratment did not bring the desired result does not hold water since ALL treatments do not bring lasting results .
    The notion that one should just for "back up " apply fluvalinate or coumaphose is not the way to test .
    You must accept colony losses to keep the breeders in business. We had breeders and Package sellers prior to the mite event. May be you can inform us with the reason why those breeders and package sellers supplied the beekeepers in the "Good old Days " ?
    JDF

  14. #14
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    >Michael what are you talking about?
    What dos it mean, what is high and what is normal?

    I was acutally trying to make a general point, not a specific one in regards to Oxalic acid, but whatever amount of Oxalic acid there was in the hive before I treated it, there is more afterwards. And while it is true it exists in foods we eat now, those same foods that are high in Oxalic acid are listed in my book of poisonous plants and they cause my kindney stones.

    My point is that the perfect treatment isn't here yet, but we all have to find something that works for us in the meantime. For some this has been FGMO. For others this has not worked. For some this is Oxalic acid.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
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    Mason, MI, USA
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    Lightbulb

    Could the problem that some are having with FGMO be that they are using the wrong FGMO as I have found 9 diferent types around here ?
    Clint

    ------------------
    Clinton Bemrose
    just South of Lansing Michigan

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