Re: Am I a middle of the road treater? or a treater?
Hi Glen I checked the web site of Tibor Szabo Szabo & he claims a good degree of mite resistance in his bees so let's hope that proves true for you.
Solomon was correct about the Ozzy bees I asked on the commercial forum about them a while ago & the consensus was that the Ozzy bees do not last the onslaught of varroa much past the end of the season.
So if you wish to treat, oxalic fumigation is a good one for you because it leaves no permanent residue in the hive. It does not kill mites in brood so is best done early winter before the bees have formed a solid cluster but after there is no brood. That way you will get a good mite kill. It does not suppress brood raising the following spring in the same way as an oxalic dribble, provided there is not too much unsealed honey in the hive at the time. Which in early winter there probably wouldn't be. You can repeat the treatment several times if you wish.
For a hard winter like in Canada the bees need sufficient stores. There is nothing wrong with sugar long as you use white sugar not unrefined (brown). It has been said that sugar is not as nutritious for bees as honey, but that matters not cos bees get almost all their nutrition from pollen, the honey or sugar is just the carbohydrates for them. You'll also hear it said sugar is poison, it isn't. Best way to feed it is before winter starts mixed as thick as you can get it using hot water. Add a cupful of vinegar to each 4 gallons, then feed to the hive in a custom built feeder, with plenty of straw in it for the bees to climb on so they won't drown. Lots of straw, a common beginner mistake is to not use enough & bees drown. feeding in that way means the bees can store it in their combs as they would honey, and have it distributed in the hive the way they want it.
Your bees only need three things to get through winter in good shape. They are the bees have to be healthy, properly housed, and enough feed.
44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).