Re: 15 year layoff
Talking about books, one thing that may have changed, is the quality of them. If you are only familiar with books that were written more than say, 20 years ago, or pre internet, most books were written by one or more people of huge experience, were well researched and could be relied on for solid information.
More recently, there has been a crop of books written by any and all comers, some authors having an agenda of some type and harshly criticising others with different viewpoints. Sometimes the author will excude lots of confidence but in fact be lacking in some basic beekeeping knowledge.
The problem for someone getting back into bees after a long time away, is that new information is needed, mostly in relation to pest management. But wading through the information overload and sifting the wheat from the chaff, is the problem.
Here's my take. Tracheal mites have pretty much gone away as a problem, don't worry about them. Use of drugs to treat AFB is declining, burning is becoming a more used method. Apistan is not a reliable mite treatment any more most mites have immunity to it. So try to get queens from someone who has been working on mite resistant bees. If you have to treat for mites, there are new methods that do not leave permanent residue in the hive, such as hop guard, oxalic acid, and others.
There is lots of argument about how to deal with mites. There is not so much argument about how to deal with hive beetles, generally if you ask questions about hive beetles you will get good answers.
44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).