Re: resistant bees or management techniques
I have used no treatments at all since 2005. My bees are healthy and productive. I tried small cell and did not see a significant difference. I tried resistant genetics and I saw a world of difference. If you get genetically resistant bees, you can totally ignore varroa because they are no longer a problem. The only way to find varroa in my colonies is to search drone brood in late summer and even then, it will be one or at most two, never a reproducing population. This is best explained by varroa drifting into my colonies from other beekeepers in the area who treat their bees.
I continue to use small cell foundation and frames because I see other advantages in the hive. I have narrow frames with 11 frames to a deep brood chamber. The combination of narrow frames and small cell foundation gives a colony the potential to develop incredibly fast in early spring.
DarJones - NW Alabama, 46 years, 24 colonies, sideliner, treatment free since 2005, 14 frame square Dadant broodnest