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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Posts
    35

    Default Bayvarol resistance in NZ?

    Hi guys my first post will be a question (or two) of course!
    Sorry its gonna be a long story to set the stage so to speak.
    I got my first hives in early October(late spring here in NZ) so am a real noob. I have two. One was started from a purchased nuc (Ill call it the nuc hive), the second from a swarm(swarm hive). They are both in double full depth brood boxes. I treated both hives with bayvarol for six weeks at the start.
    The nuc hive swarmed about mid November. I managed to catch most of the swarm and put it in a (new) nuc box with bare foundation but they didnt like it and flew off over about an hour. During this excitement I noticed a lot of bees outside of the nuc hive so I assume that's where the swarm came from. The marked queen is no longer there (unmarked one seen) so that confirms my supposition...Found one open swarm cell after oh well lesson learned.
    This hive has grown quite well and now fills two brood boxes - I can hardly lift the top one, and the bees moved up into an excluded honey super last week finally!
    I always wondered if I somehow managed to kill or separate the swarming queen and most of the bees went back to the mother hive...
    Now the swarm hive started well but hasn't really grown at all. It only occupies maybe 8-9 frames over two brood boxes and hasn't collected many stores. It had mostly plastic frames as opposed to the nuc hive which was mostly foundation so I assumed that was the problem and swapped out the bare plastic ones for wax...End of December I noticed a lot of dead or crawling bees with deformed wings. I was quite surprised by this as I thought varroa (DWV vector?) would be in remission after tx in October. I am pretty sure these were coming from the swarm hive as the bulk of them were closest to this hive, and it is the weak hive.
    OK so bayvarol went in both hives 1st Jan when I had time. Confirmed varroa present on brood by uncapping and examining. Finally got around to making some mesh floors and put them on about the 10th Jan. Sticky board underneath showed mite drop of maybe 5 on the nuc hive and maybe 20 on the swarm hive over 24 hours. Figured this was okay as capped brood still emerging that was capped pre treatment (I think?) Man those boards got dirty fast! Flipped them over to non sticky side and the next day there was a live mite on the one under the swarm hive. Nasty little bugger all crawling around how dare it! There have been no reported cases of bayvarol resistance in NZ yet....Surely all mites should be killed by the strips, I shouldnt be seeing live ones? I am quite concerned about the swarm hive and suspect it wont last the winter here in Auckland (sub tropical climate). So questions...
    Should I re-queen the swarm hive from a breeder now or closer to autumn, or just let it die and split from my strong hive next spring...
    If I have resistant mites I really need to let the authorities know...
    I am going to do a full inspection tomorrow and will let you know what the brood looks like but 12 days ago both hives had a good brood pattern...
    I dont really want to kill any bees to do an ether roll or sugar shake and freeze to test for resistance if I dont have to...

    Thanks for your advice in advance....

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Posts
    35

    Default Re: Bayvarol resistance in NZ?

    Right. Crawlers around the hive again. Thinking its a writeoff. Guess my strong hive is infected also...And it was a big swarm to start with, how annoying... Whats the best way to 'euthanise' a hive? Im guessing just close the entrance? I dont want any robbing from my good hive or any infected bees crossing over.... Half a can of engine start?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    4,163

    Default Re: Bayvarol resistance in NZ?

    Hi Matt,
    I assume its nearing end of summer where you live, Guessing there will be more plants blooming before winter hits.
    The mites are there, & I don't believe killing the one hive will solve you're problem.
    Have you tried any other mite treatments? Maybe one of the acids. Then re-queen with a resistant queen.

    I've heard of people spraying their hives with soapy water too kill the bees.

    Good Luck,
    Dan

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Posts
    35

    Default Re: Bayvarol resistance in NZ?

    Quote Originally Posted by KQ6AR View Post
    Hi Matt,
    I assume its nearing end of summer where you live, Guessing there will be more plants blooming before winter hits.
    The mites are there, & I don't believe killing the one hive will solve you're problem.
    Have you tried any other mite treatments? Maybe one of the acids. Then re-queen with a resistant queen.

    I've heard of people spraying their hives with soapy water too kill the bees.

    Good Luck,
    Hi Dan thanks for your reply. We are just into the second half of summer here though the last few years we have had extended summers and I suspect this year will be the same, so I think there will be plenty of forage for a while yet.
    Its not so much the mites Im worried about but the fact that the hive is doing poorly and I have noticed on two occasions two weeks apart or so lots of deformed wing bees crawling around, despite almost back to back varroa treatments. Reading these forums it seems it is too late for this hive?
    I havent tried any of the organic acids but have been researching them furiously (remember I am totally new to this) I have been reading about OA dribbles and formic acid pads above the frames...Still cant figure out where to get OA or FA from we only have two suppliers of bee stuff in NZ and neither of them seem to stock it as most people here are still using bayvarol and apistan... Varroa arrived here in 2000 and has supposedly yet to develop resistance... Anyway will look into further mite treatments and see if I can source some acid.... I rang MAF (our govt dept re animal diseases and such) and am waiting for them to get back to me as there have been no cases of DWV or resistant mites recorded in Auckland as far as Im aware...
    Anyway will keep you posted...
    Oh yeah and the breeders here are still working on resistant queens but have yet to nail it... Total ban on all bee and bee genetic material imports so we have to work it out for ourselves...

    Thanks again,
    Matt

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    4,163

    Default Re: Bayvarol resistance in NZ?

    Hi Matt,
    That's an interesting situation. US & Europe have been working on resistant bees for 20 years. Its a long drawn out prosses. Hopefully you're gov. will except some help from other countries, as cautiously as possible.

    Many people who get the oxolic acid, buy it at hardware stores.
    There's a lot of info about it here. www.scientificbeekeeping.com
    Dan

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Shallowater, Texas, USA
    Posts
    355

    Default Re: Bayvarol resistance in NZ?

    Oxalic acid is commonly known as "wood bleach". Ask for it at your hardware store.
    "you can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink"...well that horse ain't got nothing on a bee.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Posts
    35

    Default Re: Bayvarol resistance in NZ?

    Good to know, thanks ACBEES...
    Spoke with a guy today who MAF referred me to sounded like he know his bees...

    Reckons I should have left strips in for 8 weeks not six the first time, so will leave current ones in for 8. Also suspects queen from swarm hive may not have been superseded explaining weak hive.
    Initial under treatment may have led to large mite numbers, apparently they can nibble on the wings of pupating bees causing deformed wings...
    So advice was to leave bayvarol strips in for full 8 weeks and replace queen ASAP.
    As far as using organic acids, he felt it wasn't really necessary at the moment given my level of experience+potential causes of my issues...
    Dan, there is a guy in Northland, Daykel apairies who I think was allowed to import some drone semen a wee while back from elsewhere in the world and is making progress towards tolerant/resistant bees so thats where I plan to get my queen from...And thanks for the link great stuff!
    Hopefully the hive doesn't fail after I re-queen it...Theres plenty of clover around at the moment plus Im in the city so lots of gardens about...
    Fingers crossed, will update when I have one...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Posts
    35

    Default Re: Bayvarol resistance in NZ?

    Right. Got my new queen today, installed her in a nuc box with a couple of frames of brood/stores. Couldnt find the old queen (typical! I can always find her when Im not looking) although there were a few queen cells + lots of drones so suspect they were about to supercede her anyway. Oh well. New queen should be a whiz bang one if I did the nuc box right and didnt put another queen in there.. As far as mites, did another 24 hour count today results were about the same, 2-3 mites for the strong hive, around 20 for the weak one, this is with strips in...

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Posts
    35

    Default Re: Bayvarol resistance in NZ?

    Alright, took the strips out last week after 8 weeks in the hives. Just did a 24hr drop count, none at all under one hive, possible two under the other hive although they were a funny color, kinda grey rather than the usual orangy/red. New queen is laying up, its cool to see the transition from yellow to black bees as the old ones are replaced.
    I noticed a whole lot of legs (they look more like shedded leg skin) under the re-queened hive only, maybe they are more hygenic (have SBBs) in clearing out the empty cells?? Havent really seen this before, I know its a new topic, just curious...
    Man its amazing how much crap a hive can dump through an SBB in 24 hours must make the hive more efficient purely from a housekeeping perspective....

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