Easy OA treatments?
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  1. #1
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    Feb 2018
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    Default Easy OA treatments?

    Seems like a lot of people are like me during the summer with trying to do OA treatments with suppers on your hives and how best to block them off for treatment or remove them each treatment.

    You see a lot of arguments on the board "is it harmful or just not legal or ethical" to do OA treatment with the suppers in place.

    Has anyone come up with a simple easy way to block off the suppers from the deeps to do a treatment with out having to remove/ the suppers during the treatment and still block off the suppers?

    I had bees for 30+ years in the old days where all you had to do was rob them each year and not have to do much the rest of the year.
    When I got back into bees in 2018 I bought hives and they had a screened bottom boards with a groove below the #8 mesh to close the bottom off when needed but I ended up building bottoms that have the SHB bottoms with oil traps.

    Is there a way to build a spacer with this type of groove so you could leave it in place during the year so you could just slide a divider between the hives and treat away? I have thought of several ways but I come back to feel the bees will glue or wax it so if left open they close the track and if you have a piece in the track with a hole in the middle they will tack it down.

    I do not relish going out and trying to remove two full mediums suppers with a deep on top with 5 deep frames of honey and one with7 frames in the other. ( Bees got cute and filled up the deeps with honey so I had to give them some room.) I plan to rob the mediums in October and reevaluate the deeps and add honey frames back if needed for winter. I live close to Houston, Tx so we have a different winter than most of you.

    I thought about trying to pry the suppers up and laying in a piece of political sign in between for the tmt but that is a lot of weight to try to lift.

    Do you have something that works for you to make this easier and quicker treatment sequence?

    Thanks, JimD

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Lottsburg, Virginia USA
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    Default Re: Easy OA treatments?

    I built some shims with a cut plastic queen excluder built into it with an open entrance, sort of like an Imrie shim. I then have 1/4" boards that I can slide over the excluder which would allow me to treat the brood boxes below without having to remove the supers. Due to the flow in my area I have not got around to using them as all my honey comes off before the end of June and then my treatment starts and there are no other nectar flows.

  4. #3
    Join Date
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    Algoma District Northern Ontario, Canada
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    Default Re: Easy OA treatments?

    Pry up one end of the stack of supers and slip a piece of sheet metal in that is a bit more than half the hive box, say about 12 inches. Let that end down on the sheet, then lift other end of stack and place a second similar sheet across, overlapping the first sheet and lower the stack down. Much easier than trying to get a full sized sheet in place. You can do it quicker than you can type the instructions!

    Oldtimer spoke of a clamp on device used in NZ for placing and removing excluders but the 2 part sheet metal is quite easy.
    Frank

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Northeast PA
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    249

    Default Re: Easy OA treatments?

    Quote Originally Posted by JimD View Post
    Seems like a lot of people are like me during the summer with trying to do OA treatments with suppers on your hives and how best to block them off for treatment or remove them each treatment.

    You see a lot of arguments on the board "is it harmful or just not legal or ethical" to do OA treatment with the suppers in place.

    Has anyone come up with a simple easy way to block off the suppers from the deeps to do a treatment with out having to remove/ the suppers during the treatment and still block off the suppers?

    I had bees for 30+ years in the old days where all you had to do was rob them each year and not have to do much the rest of the year.
    When I got back into bees in 2018 I bought hives and they had a screened bottom boards with a groove below the #8 mesh to close the bottom off when needed but I ended up building bottoms that have the SHB bottoms with oil traps.

    Is there a way to build a spacer with this type of groove so you could leave it in place during the year so you could just slide a divider between the hives and treat away? I have thought of several ways but I come back to feel the bees will glue or wax it so if left open they close the track and if you have a piece in the track with a hole in the middle they will tack it down.

    I do not relish going out and trying to remove two full mediums suppers with a deep on top with 5 deep frames of honey and one with7 frames in the other. ( Bees got cute and filled up the deeps with honey so I had to give them some room.) I plan to rob the mediums in October and reevaluate the deeps and add honey frames back if needed for winter. I live close to Houston, Tx so we have a different winter than most of you.

    I thought about trying to pry the suppers up and laying in a piece of political sign in between for the tmt but that is a lot of weight to try to lift.

    Do you have something that works for you to make this easier and quicker treatment sequence?

    Thanks, JimD
    If one insists on blocking honey supers during OAV, a single sheet of newspaper is effective.

    Doing that 5X for all the hives with honey supers can be a major task and makes OAV time consuming, even with the Easy Vap.

    This was one of the motivations for doing research into the "harm" of having honey supers present while doing OAV. Turns out, it's not harmful, just not technically legal, and not approved by the government.


    The spacer idea you proposed is interesting.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
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    Spring, Texas
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    261

    Default Re: Easy OA treatments?

    Any other suggestions?

    Do you need a longer pry bar to lift up 200 lbs boxes? Wonder if my 15" nail pry bars might do the trick if you first cracked the hive with a regular hive tool?

    Wondering if you pried up the front and placed couple of shims along the front of the hive you could slide your metal sheet in unless there is too much bur comb. Then do the same for the back end it could save you a lot of time removing the two pieces of sheet metal if you leave the shims in place during the treatment. With two or three sets you could work thru a small group of hives pretty quickly if this works. shim one up then do the OA and shim another one or two up while the treatment is going on or remove the shims from the treated hive.

    The sheet metal strips might be easier to use and to place with bur comb and such.

    Opinions

  7. #6
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    Apr 2017
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    Default Re: Easy OA treatments?

    Jim, I know this suggestion still requires lifting for the initial installation, but why not just use a Cloake board? You get the "advantage" of an excluder and a metal slide all in one. Slide the sheet in to treat, then come back in a few hours and remove it. Done. You would of course need to take the Cloake board off after you harvest your honey so the bees (and queen) have access to the super you are leaving for them during the winter. You might also want to extract the deeps and let the bees work with just the mediums, or freeze them and put them back in the brood chamber in early spring. Deep frames of honey get real heavy, real fast!

    If you do use one, don't forget to block the entrance. Last thing you want is a wide open door to the honey for any robbers to waltz through.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  8. #7
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    Oct 2008
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    Turnbow Hollow, Tennessee
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    Default Re: Easy OA treatments?

    Quote Originally Posted by JWPalmer View Post
    Jim, I know this suggestion still requires lifting for the initial installation, but why not just use a Cloake board? You get the "advantage" of an excluder and a metal slide all in one. Slide the sheet in to treat, then come back in a few hours and remove it. Done. You would of course need to take the Cloake board off after you harvest your honey so the bees (and queen) have access to the super you are leaving for them during the winter. You might also want to extract the deeps and let the bees work with just the mediums, or freeze them and put them back in the brood chamber in early spring. Deep frames of honey get real heavy, real fast!

    If you do use one, don't forget to block the entrance. Last thing you want is a wide open door to the honey for any robbers to waltz through.
    Excellent idea! I think I will give that a try. About the only other thing I could add would be to paint the metal slide so that any OAV that comes in contact with it does not cause it to corrode.

  9. #8
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    Default Re: Easy OA treatments?

    I wish I could claim credit, but I have seen this mentioned before. It needs to be emphasized that separation of the supers by means of a barrier does not meet the label requirements and as such is not to be promoted.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  10. #9
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    Default Re: Easy OA treatments?

    Quote Originally Posted by JWPalmer View Post
    I wish I could claim credit, but I have seen this mentioned before. It needs to be emphasized that separation of the supers by means of a barrier does not meet the label requirements and as such is not to be promoted.
    Yes. I also noted that in reading the label. According to how the wording is on the label about supers, using a plastic or metal sheet is not allowed either much less a layer of newspaper. It can easily be interpreted that the supers must be entirely removed. In my opinion there is a diminishing return on this trying to protect the honey supers from OAV.

    Technically is it NOT a vapor but a VERY fine sublimated particle or powder if you will. There is nothing to prevent the bees from circulating the OA particle/powder throughout the hive even after you place the honey supers back on the hive after OAV treatment although not nearly as much OA particles/powder is likely to be fanned or carried into the honey supers.

    In another life we had a term for this in Army parlance.........we called it "pole vaulting over mouse turds". (mind you, NO disrespect directed to you JWPalmer but more towards the reality disconnected EPA and other government "experts" that continue to try to tell us how to keep bees but have no clue or actual ability to keep bees themselves. That having been said, I am NOT an advocate of selling honey with ANY elevated amount of OA other than what is naturally occuring. In this day and age there is an every widening gap between the letter of the law and common sense/actual hands on experience in know what really does work.

  11. #10
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    Default Re: Easy OA treatments?

    No disrespect received. Truth is I have tapdanced around the alphabet agencies (EPA, OSHA, FDA, DOT, etc) all my life. The cold hard reality is there are two stories, what we say in public, and what we do when no one is looking. I swear I have never spilled anything on the ground and not reported it. And I've never driven past my hours of service limitations.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  12. #11
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    Default Re: Easy OA treatments?

    This is on the oxalic acid label.
    Follow the vaporizer manufacturer’s directions for use.
    Two vaporizer instructions from dadant and carolinabeefarm.
    https://www.dadant.com/wp-content/up...izer_QandA.pdf

    http://carolinabeefarm.com/VarroVap%...Acid-Vaporizer

    I can relate with your last post jw
    Cheers
    gww
    zone 5b

  13. #12
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    Apr 2019
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    Default Re: Easy OA treatments?

    Quote Originally Posted by gww View Post
    This is on the oxalic acid label.

    Two vaporizer instructions from dadant and carolinabeefarm.
    https://www.dadant.com/wp-content/up...izer_QandA.pdf

    http://carolinabeefarm.com/VarroVap%...Acid-Vaporizer

    I can relate with your last post jw
    Cheers
    gww
    Odd that someone would opt to spend $100 on a slow wand vaporizer, + the $30 for a giant battery that can only complete 20 vaporizations.

    While it would be possible to get the Easy Vap for about the same price, and it would take about 1/10th the amount of time per hive.

    Honestly, I don't think enough people know about products like the Easy Vap that sell for well under $200 and do about 10X more hives in the same amount of time.

    Apparently those wand vaporizers can also "splash" the liquid OA, which makes them quite a safety hazard. The easy vap cap sort of just "pops" off - but it doesn't splash.

  14. #13
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    Default Re: Easy OA treatments?

    Odd that someone would opt to spend $100 on a slow wand vaporizer, + the $30 for a giant battery that can only complete 20 vaporizations.
    Not promoting those vaporizers. Just pointing out they recommend using a barrier between the brood box and honey supers.
    If I recommended one or ever buy one, it will be from snl or johno on this site. Never tried vaporization myself and so have no experience.
    Cheers
    gww
    zone 5b

  15. #14
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    Default Re: Easy OA treatments?

    I bought my Provap110 used from a guy that bought it from Larry. I was just thinking this weekend as I was applying a treatment how much longer it would take if I were using a wand. In the heat. With sweat pouring down my face. Gave me the heebeejeebees just imagining it.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  16. #15
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    Feb 2018
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    Spring, Texas
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    Default Re: Easy OA treatments?

    There has to be an easy way to do the OA tmts for the little guy with a few hives or like me that had bees most of my life and keep bees for fun. I like to keep a few hives for something to do and give just the honey away or eat it myself. I played this spring and had a couple of extra hives that I gave away to a buddy last month that wants a lot of hives.

    It is just an expensive hobby when you average ~45-50 dollars a box with frames and foundations. I have taken about 10 gallons this year and have 3 gallons left. I do not need any more honey yet the 4 supers are probably ~90+ percent capped and 12 frames pulled to free up the deeps is a lot of honey and weight for OA tmts.

    I have also noticed that 80 wt quick creat has gotten heavier and even the 50 wt in feed seems to have gotten heavier the last few years.

    I will probably go in in October and see what the deeps look like and put some frames back in the hives if there are still empty frames they did not use from when I pulled the deeps.

    I need a better plan next year to check for honey bound deeps and better coordination for robbing the hives. They are a little hot but they are honey producers.

    I feel lucky in a way. Live north of Houston so between the natural blooming and the subdivisions with their flowers around me there is usually something in full bloom most of the season. In Houston our cold may be 30+ degrees one or two days then 48 to 70+ till the next norther blows in.

    My Buddy that I gave the bees to keeps them down Sugarland area and does not appear to have the length of flow that I do up here.

    My Honey tastes pretty good dark and East Texas flavored in spite of the Assorted Neighborhood plants.

    Guess it is like Bee Man said they are either dying or multiplying and making honey.

  17. #16
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    Feb 2018
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    Default Re: Easy OA treatments?

    Did a quick hive dive today to see what is going on.

    Per our earlier discussion I found that I could lift the front hive with two mediums supers and 7 deep frames of honey with the hive tool enough to get the nail prybar 15 inch in the gap to get the whole front lifted enough to get 1/2 inch shim in place on each corner. I have some aluminum thin stiff material that should be heavy enough to work and thin enough to slide two pieces into the hive with 1/2 inch opening.

    My boxes are on 18" stand and with two deeps, two meds, and the 7 deeps on top. It was a bear to get the top off and back on at my age.

    The good news is I have 30 of 40 medium frame full and capped and 12 Deep frames full. The bad news is the bees have no t done a lot of work on the empty deeps in the bottom boxes northe 10 empty med frames.

    WHAT do you do? Rob all the med frames of honey BUT do you wait and add deeps back in the boxes instead of leaving the empty deep frames or extract all and feed the deeps back to the bees? Will it cause the bees to build out the empty deeps or just fill in the existing deep brood frames?

    Thanks, Jim

    JW Here is a good example of what you were talking about. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1qBxjHHXlyU on how to build a quick.

    What is the difference to the bees health between using a metal vs plastic queen excluder in general?

    LAST If you use the Cloake board what keeps the bees from not closing the slide channel down with wax and other material?
    Last edited by JimD; 09-13-2019 at 10:40 AM.

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