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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Kaysville, Utah, USA
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    363

    Question Mite count went up -- treat?

    A cold snap gave me the opportunity to do another mite count (I had the insert in my SBB), and my count came out at 20/day. A little over a month ago I got 8/day. Most of them this time around were light brown in color, which was interesting.

    I have a couple of questions:

    1. Is this count a concern going into winter?
    2. Do I have time to take action?



    I'm brand new, so any advice is appreciated.
    Don't provoke a hive full of angry bees.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Ojai, California
    Posts
    740

    Default Re: Mite count went up -- treat?

    Yes, they don't stand a chance. 20 mites per square inch overnight it's amazing they are alive. Whack them with a harsh treatment this late in the year and feed them a patty, essential oils, fumagilin-B, and a fondant board.

    If you go treatment-free right now, you sentenced them to death. You can go to light intervention, mild treatment, IPM next year. If they do well and hive strength comes way up, you could try "treatment-free" later. It appears that mites should be dealt a severe blow earlier in the season, like before mid-August.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Skagit, WA, USA
    Posts
    133

    Default Re: Mite count went up -- treat?

    As a newbie myself, I'm wondering, 20 mites TOTAL per day, or 20 per square inch. I'm guessing the former. Regardless, you should treat. Might have to use something that is not temperature sensitive, depending on the conditions at your location.

  4. #4
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    Jul 2012
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    Kaysville, Utah, USA
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    Default Re: Mite count went up -- treat?

    Quote Originally Posted by kilocharlie View Post
    Yes, they don't stand a chance. 20 mites per square inch overnight it's amazing they are alive.
    Sorry, I should have been more specific. It was 20 per day total, not per square inch, up from 8 per day total.
    Last edited by Splatt; 10-10-2012 at 03:40 PM.
    Don't provoke a hive full of angry bees.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    4,000

    Default Re: Mite count went up -- treat?

    Personally I don't get concerned until the number is over 50. A lot of people say my number is too high, but its worked well for us.
    Dan

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Belews Creek, NC, USA
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    276

    Default Re: Mite count went up -- treat?

    You should use the IPM sticky boards for three days. Count the mites and divide the total by 3 to give you the 24 hour count. 50 or more for the 24 hour total requires treatment. I tried the sugar roll on 4 hives and had a low mite count. Used the IPM boards and 2 of my hives had over 100 for the 24 hour count. Here is some info on IPM boards. http://www.njbeekeepers.org/Site_Doc...m%20Boards.pdf

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    Kaysville, Utah, USA
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    Default Re: Mite count went up -- treat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Belewsboy View Post
    You should use the IPM sticky boards for three days.
    Thanks. That's what I did. I see that my original post was a little vague.
    Don't provoke a hive full of angry bees.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    DFW area, TX, USA
    Posts
    957

    Default Re: Mite count went up -- treat?

    The count is relative to the size of the colony. How big is your hive? I recommend reading here to see what some use as a threshold for treatment. You can decide for yourself. Mites per 100 bees is a bit more specific than mites per day. Read here.
    Lee Burough
    I try to learn from my mistakes, and from yours when you give me a heads up :)

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    Kaysville, Utah, USA
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    Default Re: Mite count went up -- treat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lburou View Post
    The count is relative to the size of the colony. How big is your hive?
    At it's peak, about 50-60,000. Those links are cool! Thanks!
    Don't provoke a hive full of angry bees.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    Kaysville, Utah, USA
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    Default Re: Mite count went up -- treat?

    Quote Originally Posted by KQ6AR View Post
    Personally I don't get concerned until the number is over 50. A lot of people say my number is too high, but its worked well for us.
    That's kind of what I was thinking. Part of the problem is that I look at some of the possible side effects of the treatments and I'm reluctant to use them right before winter.
    Don't provoke a hive full of angry bees.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Mite count went up -- treat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Splatt View Post
    Sorry, I should have been more specific. It was 20 per day total, not per square inch, up from 8 per day total.
    This might be normal attrition for this time of year, since the mite load should have peaked about two weeks to a month ago. So, I don't know if that really is a lot this time of year. I would like to know what kind of count you would get were you to do an ether roll from the middle of the brood nest area. I don't know what mite drops per day say, except that mites are dying. whereas an ether roll tells how many live mites are on the bees.
    Mark Berninghausen "Ships at a distance have every man's wish on board." Zora Neale Hurston

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Kaysville, Utah, USA
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    Default Re: Mite count went up -- treat?

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    This might be normal attrition for this time of year, since the mite load should have peaked about two weeks to a month ago. So, I don't know if that really is a lot this time of year. I would like to know what kind of count you would get were you to do an ether roll from the middle of the brood nest area. I don't know what mite drops per day say, except that mites are dying. whereas an ether roll tells how many live mites are on the bees.
    That's good advice, thanks. I'm not sure I'm going to get the chance to do a roll before I need to close up the hive (temperature's been bouncing up and down), but I'll do one next year.
    Don't provoke a hive full of angry bees.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Mite count went up -- treat?

    How cold is it? Warm enough to fly?
    Mark Berninghausen "Ships at a distance have every man's wish on board." Zora Neale Hurston

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