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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Eugene, Oregon
    Posts
    60

    Default Apiguard vs Apilife Var

    For those of you who treat with thymol do you prefer Apiguard or Apilife Var. And why? I'm trying to decide on which to use this year.

    -Judy

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Lyons, CO
    Posts
    3,035

    Default

    Good question Judy! I recently got Apiguard, but after continued research I think I would've preferred Apilife Var. It seems to have slightly greater efficacy, and is less dependent on the bees action than the gel which they remove to spread it around. That said, the application if the tubs of Apiguard was easy and I'll be watching my mite fall with (hopefully) a gleeful blood-curdling cackle
    Bees, brews and fun
    in Lyons, CO

  3. #3

    Default

    I've used both.
    If you read the seller's claim for each....they're both comparably effective. But then, can you believe them?

    Apiguard is simpler to apply, needs only two applications and can be used in a wider range of temps. If you use the prefilled tubs you are supposed to make some provision to space the boxes (or tops) above the container so that the bees can get to the gel.

    ApiLife Var needs three applications but doesn't require any spacer. Its allowable applicaton temperatures are a narrower range. If applied according to the instructions the wafers are supposed to be contained, somehow, to keep the bees from gnawing the material. Wrapping each in a piece of hardware cloth works. Also, if handled as instructed, it is required that the person cutting and handling the wafers wear a respirator/mask and wear protective gloves. From first hand experience, if you plan to cut the wafers indoors, you need to use some type of breathing protection....Do handle with caution. The label states 'causes irreversible eye damage' as well as a number of other serious cautions.

    Both will stink up your hive for a number of weeks/months.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Salem OR
    Posts
    16

    Default

    I use smallcell(HoneySuperCell)frames for my honeybees.
    Anybody know should I use Apiguard or ApiLife Var or MiteAway II for Spring and Fall treatments for varroa and tracheal mite control?
    Thanks for the responses.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Lyons, CO
    Posts
    3,035

    Default

    Do you have a mite problem (what are your counts)? What else have you used? Miteaway is a formic acid treatment which is good for both mites, but if it gets too hot it'll kill your colony . The Thymol formulations are supposed to work some on tracheal mites, but I use grease patties and occasionally menthol for them.
    Bees, brews and fun
    in Lyons, CO

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Eugene, Oregon, USA
    Posts
    165

    Default

    Judy, Good question. Try both and compare results. Would bee really interesting to see your results.

    Morris

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Erie, PA
    Posts
    2,030

    Default

    I used Apiguard last year, mainly becasue it's all I could get. It was relatively easy, moreso because I have a shim/entrance above the brood chambers and below the honey supers anyway. (You have to block that entrance, so they carry it down thru the brood nest, if you have a set up like mine) Have to open the hive 3 times with either one. It was stinky.
    “The keeping of bees is like the direction of sunbeams.” -Henry David Thoreau

  8. #8

    Angry Don't like ApiLife

    I've used ApiLife 2 years now and am hoping to finish up this year what the club brought 2 years ago and be done with it. My biggest complaint is having to cut the wafers into peices and having one packet contain two applications. If you have an odd number of hives to treat you'll end up trying to rewrap a leftover wafer and keep it from evaporating for 10 days until you need it. Pain in the butt. Compare - open your hive down to the brood area, install a shim, remove a foil cover and place can on top of frames, reassemble hive. Open your hive down to the brood area, cut four peices of wire screen (2" x 4") and fold them in half, open foil package and remove one wafer, cut into four peices and install peices into folded screen, place on top of frames above brood, reassemble hive, close package and wrap with cellophane and install into plastic baggie.

    I will admit that ApiLife works and I have had good success with the product but I am ready to try something simpler.

    Pete0
    Bena, VA

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    1,933

    Default

    You don't need the screen envelopes just cut Apilife Var in 4 pieces and place them in there. The envelopes are an old recommendation and no longer recommended by the company. I used them fine without them.

    I really like either product, but the more hives and locations you have the better the Apigaurd tubs look. Mostly from the 2 applications instead of 3. The only problem with Apigaurd tubs is if you measure out too much, you end up with much fewer treatments than a tub is supposed to hold. I was meaning to try a big cattle syrynge with the end cut off this year to get better dosage accuracy. But instead I bought 200 wafers of Apilife-Var for price and other factors. I don't mind the occasional extra wafer. Use a ziplock or divy it up to the hives. An extra 1/4 wafer isn't going to hurt.

    They both have pros and cons, but
    both are quick to apply, and work for both varroa and tracheal mites. Research has been done on tracheal mites and it works, just that nothings been publishable quality as far as I know.

    I did some might counts last week and couldn't believe how low. between 1 to 11 mites for 24hr count in 10 hives. Will check these again and the rest of the hives and will skip treatment in at least some hives this year. Used apilife var or apigaurd for the past 2 years.
    Last edited by MichaelW; 08-10-2007 at 06:59 AM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    1,933

    Default

    Something else about Thymol products...

    If as they say that these kill mites at random instead of working like Apistan or Checkmite where the mites left are the strongest and more likely to survive the next treatment, then using a thymol product at bare minimum (only treat when mite levels reach economic threshold) then you set up conditions to more likely have varroa at your location adapt to a balanced host-parasite relationship where the Varroa don't kill hives. Killing the host is not the best adaptation for survival. Evidence is very strong that when varroa to bee populations are stable in untreated colonies, it often ends up being adaptations by the mite more so than adaptations by the bee. Bees in areas untreated for mites have been moved to areas where treatment is necessary and those hives crashed.

    If you don't pollinate, you should be able to develop local populations of mites that are more in balance with your bees, in my OP.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Johnson City, TN
    Posts
    217

    Default

    Michael,

    I bought apilife var to use this fall. After the honey harvest I keep my bees in two deeps and I was wondering if I could just place the tablets on the top deep under the inner cover? I would hate to have to remove the top deep as it is pretty heavy this time of year. I'm for doing it the easiest way provided I can still get effective control.
    Bee just and just bee

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    central N.C.
    Posts
    130

    Default

    Yes Michael you use it on the top of the hive no matter weather or not the top deep is full of honey.also there is a lot of new information on the use of apilife at the company web site that I don't have on hand at this time. No need for all the protective gear it calls for in some of the printed directions .I would say though to only cut it up in a well ventilated place and wear protective gloves and eyewear and don't get it on your skin.(Common Sense) No need for the screen wire wrapper , most of the killing power of the product is used up before the bees will start to carry it out anyway.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Dane County, WI.
    Posts
    3,721

    Default

    "I would hate to remove the top deep as it is pretty heavy this time of year": Bee Draggle. I agree and you also need to put a spacer for the tray which makes lining up everything more difficult. Is there a PROBLEM with using BOTH; Var and Apiguard? Let's say putting in 1-2 wafers [NOT four] "VAR" [on top] for 2 weeks and then Apiguard for 2 weeks; eliminating one changing/lifting? Is this a BIG no no when using these "chemicals"?

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Johnson City, TN
    Posts
    217

    Default

    What about Apilife Var and SBB's? Should these be closed up during the treatment period?
    Bee just and just bee

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    1,933

    Default

    I just put them on top under the inner cover regardless of honey.

    Apiguard and Apilife Var are the same active ingredient. What you are looking for though is 21 days of treatment to last an entire brood cycle as these do not kill mites inside the capped larvae. One Apilife var tablet lasts 7 days, can't remember Apiguard but I think its 14 days so thats 21. Hmm, guess your on to something there if 14 days is right!

    SBB should be closed up during treatment, according to instructions which makes plenty of sense. Last year I used cardboard under the screen bottom. AT HAS Dr. Guzman was using those manilla fold up folders for filing things laid out under the screen bottom to do sticky counts. These should be cheap and easy for lots of hives to treat with Api-X and last long enough. You might need to wedge a stick or something in there to hold it against the bottom of the screen.
    Last edited by MichaelW; 08-13-2007 at 09:03 AM.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Higginsville, Missouri
    Posts
    30

    Default Apiguard

    I found this remarkable. When making my second application of Apiguard I found I was missing the used foil pad in the first hive. I assumed I may have missed that hive initially until I moved on to the next one and same thing. In looking around, I found several of the foil portions of the pad- and they were one piece in tact-- outside the hive on the ground. Others are just missing so I assume they have been pulled down into the hive and I will find them later. It is amazing to me that they were able to remove them from the hive. The paper portion had been chewed off.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Land O Lakes, FL
    Posts
    264

    Default

    Anyone know the website of the manufacturer of apilife? A google search did not help.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Erie, PA
    Posts
    2,030

    Default

    I think this is it, but you need to brush up on your Italian:

    http://www.chemicalslaif.it/page/00_home.asp

    http://www.beekeeping.com/chemical-laif/index.htm
    “The keeping of bees is like the direction of sunbeams.” -Henry David Thoreau

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Land O Lakes, FL
    Posts
    264

    Default

    Thanks, if you click on the British flag, it take you to a site in English.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Salem OR
    Posts
    16

    Default

    I use small cell(HSC, PF-120) frames for my honey dees. When making my first application of Apiguard I found many dead mites on the bottom board. I have been surprised as I did not think to see lot of mites. I hoped on small cell frames that my bees will be without mites(just stop treatment) but now I am disappointed and upset

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