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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
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    DuPage County, Illinois USA
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    Default Fluvalinate in wax

    Joe mentions fluvalinate on the top of the list for chemicals found in wax. Better be careful where you get your wax from.

    Fluvalinate, the Silent Bee Killer?


    If you’ve followed the articles on pesticides found in bee hives (by Judy Wu, Penn State, et al) you’ve noticed that Fluvalinate tops the list in many (maybe all) of these studies. Fluvalinate has a synergistic effect (makes other chemicals nastier) in combination with some pesticides (including fungicides). One of our beekeepers had complete chemical tests run on a dead-bee sample after they were kicked out upon returning from the almonds; the highest level found (albeit in ppbs) was for fluvalinate, even though he hadn’t used it (as Apistan) for years. Perhaps someday, the “?” in the above heading will be replaced by a “!”. Fluvalinate can likely be found in every commercial hive (including yours) since it can be found in commercial foundation – a good reason to rotate your comb, as some of the best beekeepers do. There should be a ppm (or ppb) level for fluvalinate (and maybe there is) above which the comb should be discarded. Same for coumaphos.

    http://www.beesource.com/point-of-vi...april-10-2014/
    Regards, Barry

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    5,913

    Default Re: Fluvalinate in wax

    Quote Originally Posted by Barry View Post
    Better be careful where you get your wax from.
    How would you suggest somebody do that? My guess would be nearly all the comb foundation you buy will be contaminated with fluvenate. And if that is the case, rotating combs out and replacing with new will not solve the problem unless you go foundationless. But weird thing is, testing has even found fluvenate in foundationless hives.

    Me, I stopped using fluvenate products years ago but have resigned myself that any wax I buy will probably have it, and I do have to buy in wax foundation.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Cookeville, TN, USA
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    3,996

    Default Re: Fluvalinate in wax

    Buy unwaxed plastic, and wax it with wax from your foundation less or top bar hive.
    Since '09-25H-T-Z6b

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Roanoke, VA, USA
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    181

    Default Re: Fluvalinate in wax

    although testing wax for contaminants is expensive (heard that from a PSU bee expert), maybe someone could design a "single-purpose" test that isn't so expensive. Kind of like the self-tests for lead except I guess much harder to develop.

    Kim Flottum has recommended using plastic foundation and recoating with your own cappings wax as a way to get away from tainted wax foundation --- I know, there are reasons to like or dislike plastic --

    Which leaves foundationless as the path away from tainted-wax. I haven't gone all the way to foundationless but I keep working several frames in each year. I was just looking at the bees and my best hive has drawn half of a foundationless frame--just beautiful!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
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    5,322

    Default Re: Fluvalinate in wax

    I tried to find out from Dadant how high the levels of contamination are in their foundation. The answer was "Below the acceptable levels."

    Anyone know what the acceptable levels are?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Weeki Wachee, Florida,USA
    Posts
    1,959

    Default Re: Fluvalinate in wax

    ".5mg/kg seems to be acceptable"

    http://www.apimondiafoundation.org/f...ano%20Oddo.pdf

    Whatever that means?

  7. #7

    Default Re: Fluvalinate in wax

    It is pretty amazing that it still present at such high levels. I didn't think anyone commercial was still using it. It would be nice to believe that the amounts present on plastic foundation would be inconsequential. Any I've gotten in the past few years has had only a spotty spray at best.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    syracuse n.y.
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    1,880

    Default Re: Fluvalinate in wax

    how is it determined that the chemical is a result of the use in the hive, or the result of the general use of the chemical?

    from an epa document: note they say Tau-fluvalinate is not available to home owners which is no longer true as a google search produced many products available over the counter.

    Tau-fluvalinate is a broad-spectrum insecticide/miticide in the pyrethroid class of pesticides. It is registered for a single food use (beehives/honey) and several non-food uses, including ornamentals (outdoor and container-grown, greenhouse, interior plantscapes, dip for cuttings), building surfaces/perimeters, ant mounds and certain crops (carrots and brassica/cole crops) grown for seed. Tau-fluvalinate was first registered in one of its earlier forms, racemic fluvalinate, in 1983. With an estimated 11,000 pounds of active ingredient (a.i.) used per year, it has minimal domestic usage. The majority of the usage is in commercial greenhouses and on outdoor field- and container-grown ornamentals. The residential uses are very limited (approximately 600 pounds a.i. annually on spot application to ant mounds and outdoor building perimeters), and no homeowner applications are allowed. Therefore, there is little potential for residential exposure.
    mike syracuse ny
    I went to bed mean, and woke up meaner. Marshal Dillon

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Mtn. View, Arkansas, USA
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    1,263

    Default Re: Fluvalinate in wax

    The study that Mbeck gave is 11 years old and done in Italy, those figures on wax found with fluvalinate may not be the same today. What I saw that interested me was that comb drawn on foundation only had 1/3 of the amount of the chemical that was in the foundation to begin with.
    37 years - 25 colonies - IPM disciple - naturally skeptic

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
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    syracuse n.y.
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    Default Re: Fluvalinate in wax

    Quote Originally Posted by AR Beekeeper View Post
    The study that Mbeck gave is 11 years old and done in Italy, those figures on wax found with fluvalinate may not be the same today. What I saw that interested me was that comb drawn on foundation only had 1/3 of the amount of the chemical that was in the foundation to begin with.
    that's why I asked the question above, if the foundation comes with some fluvalinate, and goes down when they pull it out, and yet the cappings used to make foundation still have fluvalinate in it, and you are not using it, it has to be coming from outside the hive?
    mike syracuse ny
    I went to bed mean, and woke up meaner. Marshal Dillon

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    26,764

    Default Re: Fluvalinate in wax

    [QUOTE=Barry;1086755] – a good reason to rotate your comb, as some of the best beekeepers do. There should be a ppm (or ppb) level for fluvalinate (and maybe there is) above which the comb should be discarded. Same for coumaphos. [QUOTE]

    Who are these best beekeepers? How much comb is the right amount to rotate out and when? Do these best beekeepers shake their bees onto new foundation and discard the old comb from a certain number of hives? What I have read, unless I misunderstand something, is that if one simply replaced two combs in each ten frame box each year w/ frames of foundation not only would it take 5 years to get all new comb in each box (as if anyone is that annally organized) but that somehow, over time, that new comb takes up properties of the old comb next to it in the box. So what have you accomplished?

    And Coumaphos? I haven't used that stuff for over 15 years and it showed up in pollen samples in my beehives two years ago. I have heard the same from other beekeepers too. The suspicion is that bees are bringing it in from the environment. So how do you know when to rotate out combs because of coumaphos?

    If one does do comb replacement rotation, shouldn't those combs be burned or sent to the landfill? Otherwise, won't the raw beeswax used for all sorts of things besides honeycomb foundation become more and more contaminated thus making replacement rotation a waste of time and resources?
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
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    DuPage County, Illinois USA
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    Default Re: Fluvalinate in wax

    You're not quoting my words, those are Joe's.
    Regards, Barry

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
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    Default Re: Fluvalinate in wax

    This winter I began melting all combs from deadouts dating back 2005 and older. A swarm filled one batch of combs sitting vertically in the tank and another box sitting next to the tank, ignoring my numerous bait hives twenty feet away with newer combs. Since scouts were swarming over the pile of old combs and not my bait hives, I gave up and put the old combs out as bait hives. So much for comb renewal this year. If the old combs are somehow contaminated the bees can't seem to detect that. In fact they prefer it.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
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    Default Re: Fluvalinate in wax

    Quote Originally Posted by odfrank View Post
    If the old combs are somehow contaminated the bees can't seem to detect that. In fact they prefer it.
    A bit of an oxymoron.
    Regards, Barry

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Fluvalinate in wax

    Quote Originally Posted by Barry View Post
    You're not quoting my words, those are Joe's.
    Yeah, I messed that up somehow.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

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