Hello all. This is my first time posting here but I've found this forum a really useful source of information for a while now. This is my first year of keeping bees. While it has definitely been a learning experience, I didn't think it was going to badly, that is until today. About a week and a half ago I began winterizing my hives (Moisture quilts, slide in covers for open bottom boards, etc). Today I happened to pull out the bottom board inserts on both of my hives and noticed a lot of dead mites (picture below).
Back in early September, I started treatment with apivar strips and recently removed them a few weeks ago. I realize now I should have done a mite count check on the bees during that time to make sure it was working. I am wondering if things are too far gone at this point to try an put the money/effort in to save them. Yesterday I also happend to notice a bee with crippled wings at the entrance. The only thing I can think of to do at this point would be to get the equipment needed vapor treatments. Here in Iowa, it is getting too cold to be opening up the hives (I think). Otherwise, the hives look good. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!