Re: what mite count is acceptable?
Well I'm not sure if Cincinatti is similar to Ontario, but in Ontario we treat following these thresholds:
Threshold guidelines for varroa mite levels in May and August.
Note: Treatment levels have been lowered from previous recommendations.
Treat when varroa is greater than or equal to the following:
Monitoring Method: Ether Roll
Number of Varroa Mites in May: 1 mite/100 bees
Number of Varroa Mites in August: 2 mites/100 bees
Monitoring Method: Alcohol Wash
Number of Varroa Mites in May: 2 mites/100 bees
Number of Varroa Mites in August: 3 mites/100 bees
Monitoring Method: Sticky Board
Number of Varroa Mites in May: 9 mites/24hr drop
Number of Varroa Mites in August: 12 mites/24hr drop
I think the theory is based on the premise that a sticky board captures 3% of the mites (by natural death or groomed off). So for every 3 mites that lands on the sticky board there are 97 other mites in the hive. So if you have 40 mites on the board then there is almost 1300 mites in the hive!
Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss you`ll be among the stars!