Re: Oxalic acid via provap 110, and why I hate contrary opinions.
Scooby, since you posted this on beesource, you will probably get 100 opinions and still be split 50/50. The trick is to know the limitations of any treatment and work around it. OA works best when the hive is broodless. In St. Augustine, I doubt your hives are ever completely broodless. This means you have to modify the treatment timing to be most effective where you are. That means regular monitoing of mite levels both before and after treatment and most likely multiple treatments per year. There are plenty of folks that have not had good success with using OA. It could be application methods or time of day or frequency or who the heck knows what. Just didn't seem to work for them. Others swear by it and have the mite free hives to prove it. This is my first year using the Provap110 and I love it. Because it is hot when the acid is put in, the OA is literally blown into the hive where it quickly speads. So far my hives all appear healthy and are producing bees at a high rate. Last year at this time, before OAV, my hives were in decline and I lost two of them in November. Apivar kept me from losing them all.
If you are handy wih tools, you can build a unit that works like the Provap110 for a lot less money. Search for band heater vaporizer on this site.
Also glad to hear you have changed direction a little and will be splitting from strong hives instead of trying to force weak hives to make bees.
All the best,
Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.