preferred treatment program
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  1. #1
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    Default preferred treatment program

    According to this guide http://www.biosecurity.govt.nz/files...rroa-guide.pdf there are 3 treatment programs for varroa control. They all have their advantages and disadvantages.
    1)Prophylactic treatment
    2) Calendar treatment
    3) Treatment based on monitoring and economic thresholds (IPM)

    For all, but especially for beekeepers with 500+ hives what is your preferred program? If you wish to present one or other reason for your choice even better.

    In my case I am currently doing the treatments according to the calendar. After the treatment I do a brood inspection to each hive, to check the effectiveness of the treatment and learn. I have now 600 hives. I have found that my hives do not all have the same response/efficiency to the treatment, especially to the treatment of late summer. The last two years I have verified that about 10-20%, need a new treatment.

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: preferred treatment program

    Eduar.....
    I am new and have nothing to add but curiousity. My instinct even with only a few hives but expesially thinking toward your question is that using the calender method for every part of bee keeping would be the way to go. I mean for splits, adding supers, treatment and harvest. I realize that bees are like livestock (say all cows don't come in heat at the same time and that makes renting a bull at the best time hard). I really don't with my low level of knowlage currently, understand how you could be comercial and not have a calender system that hits close enough to your flow, mite peek and such that would allow you to be comecial and to maby even be able to direct employees on task that need done.

    I will be very interested in the responces you get to this topic.
    Cheers
    gww

    PS I only have three hives and I already want a do this on this date type of system. Be nice to have a little cookie cutter plan that works more then not.
    zone 5b

  4. #3
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    Default Re: preferred treatment program

    If you got 600 hives now (congratulations), calendar treatment is about all you'll have time to do, individual monitoring and treatment on a hive by hive basis can no longer be done once you have a good number of hives.

    The document you linked is a great read but a little dated now, some things have moved on.

  5. #4
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    Default Re: preferred treatment program

    Quote Originally Posted by Eduardo Gomes View Post

    For all, but especially for beekeepers with 500+ hives what is your preferred program?
    As a hobby beekeeper with only 14 hives, I prefer not to treat.

    Shane

  6. #5
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    Default Re: preferred treatment program

    How do you check the effectiveness of the treatment for operations with 500+ hives?

    In my opinion, sugar roll and other similar methods can give an illusory idea because the conclusions are supported in a sample that may not be representative of all apiary' hives. If an apiary has 10-20% of hives in which the treatment was not effective it seems to me very likely that these hives are not properly diagnosed and identified to be treated again based on a sample of bees from 25% of the apiary' hives. I think this is one of the reasons why winter mortalities are high. Maybe I'm wrong, I do not know.

    I am not criticizing the method of evaluation. In countless situations if I do not have a dog I hunt with a cat.

  7. #6
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    Default Re: preferred treatment program

    Quote Originally Posted by Eduardo Gomes View Post
    How do you check the effectiveness of the treatment for operations with 500+ hives?
    You do not check the effectiveness of the treatments?

  8. #7
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    Default Re: preferred treatment program

    For me anyway Eduardo the only checking I do is during regular hive work in the weeks following treatment I keep an eye out for signs of mites such as pms. This is due to time constraints, I simply don't have time to use drop boards or do sugar rolls etc on every hive. I did do these things when mites first came to my country, it took me several years to learn about mites and understand them, and I had to test hives to understand what was happening.
    For every new beekeeper including people with just a few hives my belief is testing is important otherwise the hive dies, the beekeeper does not know why, and nothing has been learned.

  9. #8
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    Default Re: preferred treatment program

    The last two years I have verified that about 10-20%, need a new treatment.[/QUOTE]

    Eduardo:

    To summerize: after your fall treatment, based on the last 2 years experience, you notice that between 10-20% of the colonies have some varroa. You conclude that the treatment was not effective. You make this conclusion based on checking 25% of the colonies (see post 5) As a side note, Radar how do I quote from post 1 and on the same reply?

    Correct me if I am wrong, it sounds as if you do nothing afterwards and that is why you think you have high winter mortality? (again see post 5)

    Jean-Marc

  10. #9
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    Default Re: preferred treatment program

    Quote Originally Posted by Eduardo Gomes View Post
    How do you check the effectiveness of the treatment for operations with 500+ hives?
    This was from post 5.

    Quote Originally Posted by jean-marc View Post
    As a side note, Radar how do I quote from post 1 and on the same reply?
    And this was from your post. The way I did this, on the bottom right corner of each post you see a quotation mark, click it, and it shows a blue check box. Click multiple posts, then hit 'reply with quote', and you get all of them in the new reply, then you can trim the amount quoted from each.

  11. #10
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    Default Re: preferred treatment program

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    the only checking I do is during regular hive work in the weeks following treatment I keep an eye out for signs of mites such as pms.
    I do the same. After the tratment I want to see a good brood pattern. I don't want to see a single varroa on the bees, not a single bee with deformed wings, not a single partially-eaten larva, not a single bee emerging dead from the cell and with the tongue stretched,... If I see any of these signs this hive is treated again.

    I see each one of my beehives to assess the treatment eficacy, and I use it to take the strips out, check how they are on reservations, if I should feed them with fondant, and if the queen is new looking for the brood pattern.

    It is a time-consuming and laborious procedure. It takes about 5 minutes per hive. However the data from the last two years shows me that I saved between 10-20% of the hives. Last year my winter mortality was below 5% (most queen failure). Mortality in the spring-summer period does not exceed 1%.

    This year I repeated the procedure and so far I have 0.5% mortality (3 hives). I am confident that I will be able to maintain the rate of last year or even improve it.

    These results were achieved thanks to what I have learned here and other places, with people like you OT.

  12. #11
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    Default Re: preferred treatment program

    Quote Originally Posted by jean-marc View Post
    after your fall treatment, based on the last 2 years experience, you notice that between 10-20% of the colonies have some varroa.
    Yes, the late-summer-early fall treatment is effective in 80-90% of the hives ( I have observed that it is not effective in 10-20% of the hives)

    You make this conclusion based on checking 25% of the colonies (see post 5)
    No. I evaluate the effectiveness of the treatment by observing each hive by the method I referred to OT (post#10).

    Correct me if I am wrong, it sounds as if you do nothing afterwards and that is why you think you have high winter mortality? (again see post 5)
    The mortality rate in the previous year in the winter did not reach 5% and this year so far has not exceeded 0.5%.


    In post # 5, I am wondering if the sampling method (which I stopped following intentionally) could lead anyone using it to an erroneous evaluation of the effectiveness of the treatment? if it is effective in 80-90% of the hives, in an operation of 1000 hives it can mean that 200 hives are not treated again because they escaped to the sampling.

  13. #12
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    Default Re: preferred treatment program

    Quote Originally Posted by Eduardo Gomes View Post
    It is a time-consuming and laborious procedure. It takes about 5 minutes per hive. However the data from the last two years shows me that I saved between 10-20% of the hives. Last year my winter mortality was below 5% (most queen failure). Mortality in the spring-summer period does not exceed 1%.
    Just thinking and asking here... For those of you that sample a large percentage of your colonies, could it be the 10-20% are the real trouble makers to begin with? Assume most colonies are nearing treatment threshold, but are those 10-20% way over to begin with and even a good knockdown from a single round won't get them back on par with the rest?
    Breeder Queens & Honey Bee Nutritional Supplements
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  14. #13
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    Default Re: preferred treatment program

    I hope I have understood correctly what you mean. I think it does not apply easily on my system. To identify these 10-20% priority I would have to evaluate all the hives prior to the treatment to identify them and treat them with some anticipation so they do not reach more worrying levels of infestation. The timing of this operation will coincide with the period in which I am harvesting the honey and would upset and delay it.

    I believe that I will continue to treat by the calendar in this new year with one or another adjustment. I treat twice in a year and I will anticipate a little more the placement of the summer-fall treatment and I will postpone a little more the placement of the spring treatment so that the interval without treatments does not exceed 3 months. I treat with apivar most of the times. I do the rotation more or less every two years. I'll stop for a year, apply another brand, and then use it again for the next two years.

    In EU more knowledgeable keepers than I and independent studies recommend leaving the strips for 10 to 12 weeks. Apivar is a very slow-acting treatment and should be placed before hives reach high levels of infestation. The withdrawal period for Apivar is zero days here in Europe. Can be placed during the flow… if I can not help it.

    With this approach I hope next year to descend to 5% or less the hives I must re-treat.

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