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Discussion Starter · #441 ·
I agree that getting the same negative results doing the same thing points to a different direction.

My strategy was always to see what could be done tf and back away with brood breaks etc if necessary.. If I remember correctly, you have lots of foundationless with deep frames. I'm guessing you have lots of drone comb in your hives? I think in a marginal situation this could be a recipe for disaster from what I have observed within my own hives. In your situation I would be controlling what kind of comb in the broodnest (need an excluder), doing drone brood removal, and possibly a brood break and bringing in some vsh queens. These are strategies I will employ on my identified red flag hives. Once you get some stability you can start selecting for bees that deal with mites well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #443 ·
Just did a sample of 2 year survivor. It is filling 2 medium boxes, and I took a worker brood sample, a drone brood sample and did a sugar shake.

No mites in the sugar shake with a half cup of bees.
0 mites in 112 pupae pulled
I did find one mite family in the 46 drone larvae/pupae pulled.

The other hive I sampled had 3 mites in the sugar shake, 1 mite in 100 worker brood pulled, no drone sample yet with this hive. The interesting thing about this hive is that I found 8 chalkbrood mummies during sampling. Maybe the added benefit of brood samples, monitoring for brood disease.
 

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Discussion Starter · #444 ·
I have taken about 30 samples since the middle of March. I have gone through and have red flagged 3 hives with higher mite counts than their peers and another with chalkbrood. I will be providing and removing drone comb to reduce the number of drones in the hive and also prevent those hives to contribute to the drone pool.
 
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