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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Arundel, Maine USA
    Posts
    1,207

    Default reaction to api life var

    I treated last week with api life guard. I have 5 colonies in various stages. I've noticed a little bit of fighting outside many of the colonies, and lots more bees outside of the hive in a more frenzied state. I'm feeling like I'm NOT seeing robbing. I'm wondering if the bees are a bit agitated by the api life var. I know that it's concentrated thymol and releases pretty strong fumes. Is this what I'm seeing, or should I be worried about something else?

    Thanks for the input...
    Let's BEE friends

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Sacramento,California,USA
    Posts
    3,872

    Default

    I'm not sure what you are seeing is caused from, but ApiLife Var does cause frenzied state in the bees. They really work overtime trying to get the stuff outside the hive in doubletime. I've also seen the bees propolize a ring around it to keep it isolated.
    “When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” – John Muir

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Limestone, Alabama
    Posts
    577

    Default

    I treated with this stuff a few days ago, and now I have hundreds of dead bees on the ground in front of the hives with fighting continuing. I will never use this junk again! The results are the same as if a major robbing event was occuring. I used Thymomite last year with no such problems. Go figure!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Sacramento,California,USA
    Posts
    3,872

    Default

    In my time as a beek, I've used Apistan, ApiLife Var, and ApiGuard. My Apistan use was back in late '80s and it worked great back then. It don't work so well now a days. I did not like at all the results with either of the Api's and yes, I did follow the instructions. I now use only powder sugar dusting at the rate of 1/2 cup per deep box on screen bottom boards and am liking the results very much. I sugar once a month unless I see symptoms of varroa in which case I treat once a week until symptoms reduce.

    The above is just relating what I've done and what I'm now doing. Everyone else please do your research and choose a method of treatments that you feel the most comfortable with.
    “When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” – John Muir

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    lewisberry, Pa, usa
    Posts
    6,080

    Default

    Not sure about just the treatment cuasing this. I do agree with the more active state of the bees, etc.

    Overall, I see many more challenges at the entrance and bees fighting and rolling off the landing boards. It's that time of year. Bees get aggressive, challenge other hives, pick on the weak, etc. And you mentioning your hives are at different stages, which may be playing into this. Equalizing hives, and manipulating the hives so there is not strong versus weak in the same yard, is good advice and something to consider. Having three frame nucs next to full size hives present no problems much of the year when flows are in, when bees have other things to do. But by now, you as the beekeeper should of worked the hives to point that this should not be a problem with hives of different strengths. They will still be challenged (all things being equal), but it's not a problem to be concerned with.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    VENTURA, California, USA
    Posts
    3,604

    Default The proper doseage

    This data my be of help.
    I couldn't find data on hives smaller than their 8-20 full depth frames.

    USING ��Use only in brood chambers.
    API LIFE VAR ��Use in spring or in late summer/fall when bees are not producing surplus
    honey. Remove API LIFE VAR tablets from hive at least one month (30
    days) prior to harvesting the honey to prevent contamination of the honey.
    TABLETS ��Best control when average daily temperatures are between 68°F and 86°F.
    TREATMENT OF
    TWO-STORY HIVE
    ��Break one tablet into 4 equal pieces. Place the pieces of API LIFE VAR on
    the four corners of the brood nest.
    (Bees covering 8-20 full-size
    Langstroth frames or similar)
    ��Don’t place pieces directly above the middle of the brood nest.
    ��Close open screen bottom ard for fumigant to be effective.
    ��After 7-10 days, replace with a fresh tablet broken into pieces as above.
    Repeat procedure again, 7-10 days later. Leave last tablet for 12 days,
    remove residuals from colony. Three applications total.
    NOTE: ��Use of API LIFE VAR is most effective when less-sealed brood is present.
    ��Use of API LIFE VAR at average daily temperatures below 54°F may result
    in less control of varroa mite.
    ��Use above 90°F may increase potential for brood and bee kill.
    HANDLING ��Wear water-proof gloves when handling the tablets. See label for more

    Regards,
    Ernie
    Ernie
    My websitehttp://bees4u.com/

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Limestone, Alabama
    Posts
    577

    Default

    Today I spent the morning removing the Api Life Var from my colonies. Only a few days ago, I spent lots of time placing it in the hives. This product caused a fighting frenzy in the vicinity of the beeyard so much so that I am glad this yard is not located near homes etc. Lots of dead bees around each hive with the frenzy still occuring this morning. What's worse is that I saw numerous small clusters of bees on nearby limbs with some clusters containing as many as 4 queens! The bees are abscounding because of this product and queens are leaving in mass. I am sure to lose several of the colonies in this yard and I can't even work them today to see how many are queenless.

    I would have suffered far less loss from mites than I did from this junk. I'm just glad I only treated one yard, otherwise I may have been wiped out. The Api Life I had ordered for the other yards is on its way back to Brushy Mountain. If you use this stuff, keep a close eye on your colonies.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    VENTURA, California, USA
    Posts
    3,604

    Default Was the weather to hot for

    I checked your local weather, Limesstone golf course
    83/50 ON 9/26
    The weather could be a major player on the bees and their mite medication.
    Just tying to help you out.
    Ernie
    Ernie
    My websitehttp://bees4u.com/

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Limestone, Alabama
    Posts
    577

    Default

    That is a possible although the label says it's ok between 65 and 95.

    Anyway, I removed it from the hives and by the next day they were beginning to calm down. I still don't know how many hives are queenless.
    Needless to say, I will not be using this junk again. I used Thymomite strips last year with no problem. I did notice that the Thymomite is pure Thymol and the Api Life Var has other oils added.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    VENTURA, California, USA
    Posts
    3,604

    Default Anyway, I removed it from the hives and by the next day they were beginning to calm d

    You might want to write down the batch code number for your product.
    It is possible that the manufacturer made a "hot" batch. I may be wrong. At the grass roots level of beekeeping we just can not take anymore hits. We try our very best to keep the bees healthy and then the miticides do not work according to label directions. Somehow we have to get this mite control fine tuned.
    BTW: I use IPC measures plus genetics.
    Regards,
    Ernie
    Ernie
    My websitehttp://bees4u.com/

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Windsor,NC,USA
    Posts
    285

    Default

    I have just finished treating 12 hives with this. I see that they work frantically to get it shredded and out of the hive. Some shred it, others propalize it. This is normal. I did see a few more bees than normal being harassed at the entrance, but really no big fighting. I have used this for two years and not used anything else. I will continue to use it as it is very effective at reducing the mites during it's 3 week treatment. I am thinking of extending it one more week on one or two hives that still have drops between 50 and 100. I will wait a day or two and re-check the counts. It may well have some residual effect for a few days as I can still smell it.
    I am satisfied with it so far and I am sorry to hear that you are not having the same results. Have you tried the APIVAR product? practically the same thing but in a different delivery method.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    buffalo junction, virginia
    Posts
    376

    Default Notice the same thing

    Hello i am using Apivr-Life and i only use it when i find mites but so far i have been finding one mite on one bee and the ones tht are coming out of the cells are good and i only use this stuff while the brood is not capped and the weather here is some what cool. I have a five frame nuc and i have seen no fighting some of my hives are being bothered but nothing serious. My oldest hive and a nother one has not been treated for mites in two year and i see no problem most of my hives are crossed wth minn. hygenics x carni's.


    THOMAS

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Arundel, Maine USA
    Posts
    1,207

    Default

    great posts! I haven't noticed any more fighting. I'm on the last application for all of my hives. My might drop counts are still pretty high which has me worried. Should I extend my treatment to 4 weeks? What are the risks of extending?

    I haven't had any problems with absconding. Though temps here have been pretty low. It hasn't been over 60 for the most part. I think that I would be hesitant to do this in the spring because by the time the temps are consistently high enough there are days that the temps are too high. I think that has a lot to do with the reaction of the bees...

    Let's BEE friends

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    parker county, tx
    Posts
    7,923

    Default

    When I was reading about using essential oils in hives six years ago, the studies suggested increased irritability in bees when using thyme oil. That's probably what you are seeing. My bees are always irritable, so I don't know if treatments would affect them. If it did, I think I would have to avoid the beeyard altogether.
    So many weeds.......so little time.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Windsor,NC,USA
    Posts
    285

    Default

    I only treated one hive with an extra dose that I had left over. It still had high counts ( 77, and 50) in 24 hours. I did have one hive that lost a queen at the end of the treatment, not sure if it is related to that or not. I also had at least one queen stop laying during the treatment. This is a real possibility and one that must be considered when using any treatment. It could also theoretically cause supercedure if the queen substance gets masked. Remember that each hive is different and will react in it's own way. Putting anything that smells as strong as that in a hive will always cause some disturbance. I am happy with apilife var and will continue to use it.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Perkasie, PA
    Posts
    1,998

    Default

    I've seen something similar to your experiences with Api-Life, with similar anti-varroa efficacy. It has journaled data to back it up and is approved in all 50 states. I'll sell you the info for $0.01 and bragging rights.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Heavener Oklahoma
    Posts
    937

    Default Thymol Treatment

    Last year (2007) I used Apiguard in Augest In the 90's (Thymol) with real good mite control I even treated my Mini Nucs not so good Had a 100 in one yard was going along put it on I used very little about the size of a dime in area and thickness I was on about number 25 when I realized the loud fanning in the 1st ones I had done so I stopped putting it on the Mini nuc's. I went ahead and put in on the full size Hive because of the fanning in the mini nuc's I only put on about 1/2 of the recommended doses and it worked out great. Went back the next day to check things out and sure was shocked at what I seen In the full size colonies every thing appeared normal but my mini nucs that had got treatment put on them about 8 of them had not bees and the rest had only couple hundred of bees in them some had queens and some had no queens.NEVER will I do that again.So I went about checking the other Mini nucs and got a surprise I didn't lose all the bees after all there were several of the other mini nucs twice as strong I think the bees in the treated mini nucs just joined up with the other ones no sign of fighting.

    It was a totally different in 2008 Spring (March) treat went great no ill effects.


    But when I treated in the late summer it was about 1st September Upper 80's and low 90's seen very different results done

    15 5 Frame nucs in 7 almost all the bees were gone it killed the brood lost 3 queens uses about 1 slightly rounded small plastic spoon in each one.

    I also noticed in my cell builder that I didn't treat at that time had about 50% more bees in it. I had treated the full size hives about a week early then decided to treat the nuc's

    THE DIFFERANCE I NOTICED IN THE 2007,2008 LATE SUMMER TREATMENT

    THE TEMP WAS ABOUT THE SAME, 2007 WAS DRY AND LOW HUMIDITY AND 2008 THE HUMIDITY WAS HIGH 70 AND 80%

    ALSO I HAD A NEW BATCH OF APIGUARD

    DONT KNOW IF IT WAS MADE TO STRONG OR BEACUSE IT WAS FRESH AND IS STRONGER AND THE OTHER WAS OLDER AND HAD LOST PART OF ITS STRENGTH OR THE HUMIDITY PLAYED A BIG PART ON THE EFFECT IT HAD.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Germantown, Ohio
    Posts
    43

    Default I lost 2 out of 5 and I think it was the api life var

    One week ago I had 5 strong hives. I was shocked today when I found two of them EMPTY. I was within the recommended temp range for api life var (maybe even on the low side).

    Don't think I'll use that again.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Germantown, Ohio
    Posts
    43

    Default I lost 2 out of 5 and I think it was the api life var

    One week ago I had 5 strong hives. I was shocked today when I found two of them EMPTY. I was within the recommended temp range for api life var (maybe even on the low side).

    Don't think I'll use that again.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Santa Rosa CA USA
    Posts
    7

    Cool api life var

    pure garbage! last fall i used it and lost a hive to robbing. Did not realize it was due to api life var. Tried it again this week same thing. I am lucky that i have only lost two hives. Someone could lose a big part of there apiary if not removed in time. I can read directions! it should be taken off the market. O buy the way all the mites are gone. so are the bees. Can anyone tell me of a proven organic v mite control?

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