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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Faulkner Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    1,697

    Default Re: Spring mite treatment - what is good?

    I have a different view. I believe in a hard knock back in the spring and then cleanup if needed in the fall.
    Reasons....
    1. Mites double in quantity every brood cycle of (3 weeks)
    2. When knocked back to less than ones percent in the spring, it will take 2 to 3 brood cycles for them to get to 1 percent. This buys time to the fall and helps to ensure healthy bees in August for the winter bees
    3. The mites left in the fall will more than likely be below threshold, hence less of a clean up, making it easier for products like Formic.
    4. Since the mites are knocked back early n the spring, the bees will be healthy for the honey flow bringing In a good honey crop to pay for the hobby or business minded beekeeper.
    5. With a good spring knock back, the bees will better handle some of the cool spring illnesses, and the healthy queen and her bees will do well at outpacing mite production.

    Economic threshold is 4% . If you have a 1% mid May, by July the mites will be at 4% causing brood damage and lost honey production and a good chance the hive will not survive the winter or come out of winter with a very poor cluster size and poor chance of recovery in the second year. If left unchecked in July it is almost a definite death sentence either late fall or in late January or February.
    Just my two cents

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Denver, Colorado, U.S.A.
    Posts
    861

    Default Re: Spring mite treatment - what is good?

    honeyshack - Exactly what I was thinking, just much better thought out and articulated than I could do. How do you do your spring "hard knock back" and do you notice any deleterious effects from your method?
    Last edited by shinbone; 02-04-2013 at 06:14 PM.
    --shinbone
    (3rd year, 14 hives, Zone 5b, 5400 ft, 15.8" annual rainfall)

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Faulkner Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    1,697

    Default Re: Spring mite treatment - what is good?

    apivar in the spring, formic in the fall when the temps are in the right zone.
    No. Key is to get the mites under control before the viruses or nosema set in creating complications and timing is everything.
    I do alcohol wash in the spring and in the late summer and use a cappings fork (not used in the honeyhouse) and do drone pulls throughout the season to monitor mite increases.

    Some hives seem prone to not respond to anything. Be it the queen or just a bad genetics. It's like bulls (bovine) not every bull is meant to breed. 95% should be cut and raised as steers for butcher. For those hives, which are few and far between, if they can not make it on what the rest get, cull them and start again. Bad genetics is no reason to throw away good hard earned $.

    Lastly, I practice swapping out two brood frames from each brood box ( I run doubles, standard boxes) each year. That way, the comb is healthy too. Be it adding in dark honey frames or foundation, does not matter to me...what ever works.

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Denver, Colorado, U.S.A.
    Posts
    861

    Default Re: Spring mite treatment - what is good?

    Good info. Thanks! When you do your spring Apivar treatment, do you apply according to the directions, or do you do a reduced treatment such as a shorter time period or applying less Apivar?
    --shinbone
    (3rd year, 14 hives, Zone 5b, 5400 ft, 15.8" annual rainfall)

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Faulkner Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    1,697

    Default Re: Spring mite treatment - what is good?

    I always follow directions...even on withdrawal.
    Never compromise the product with less of it or less time. This is how resistance is built. We need to remember that the key is to kill as many mites as possible. If we cut short the treatment or use less, we reduce the effacy leaving more mites. On the other side of the coin, rotate treatments and never leave the strips in all year. Our directions state that we can leave in for an extra brood cycle...but that is it and that is only if the first week the spring temps dropped.
    The product only works when the bees walk on it. The distribution of the product is different for say formic which works like fumigation
    We have some good chats in the chat room about this and other things...feel free to drop in if you like.

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Denver, Colorado, U.S.A.
    Posts
    861

    Default Re: Spring mite treatment - what is good?

    Very helpful. Thanks!
    --shinbone
    (3rd year, 14 hives, Zone 5b, 5400 ft, 15.8" annual rainfall)

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