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Discussion Starter #1
Pulled my Apivar strips after 8 weeks in hives. Mite washed 6 hives this afternoon. One hive had 2 mites (0.67%), One had 1 mite (0.33%), and 4 had zero mites. Apivar continues to be the only effective miticide for my climate and year-round active brood nest that gives me consistent and reliable mite control. I continue to use OAV in conjunction with spring brood breaks.

I abandoned the OAV-only approach after 2017. However, that was before serious questions and studies seemed to reveal that 1 gram per brood box was likely not an effective dose. My plan for 2021 is to use OAV exclusively in one of my yards and continuing Apivar in my remaining yards. I am likely going to run this on a 7-day cycle and will let the mite drop determine how many cycles I treat. 4g per brood box. While I could likely manage a shorter cycle (3 or 4 days) for the one yard, I could not do that with all of my yards. (Still at least 10 years from retirement) And the whole point of this exercise is to find an alternative to Apivar for my whole operation.

Thoughts and comments are welcome.
 

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I believe that we are in similar climates. Apivar is my primary treatment and has been for a few years. It continues to be effective. I also do a midwinter oav….sometimes two.
I have a couple of yards that get their initial end of season treatment a bit late and 7 or 8 weeks is too long. I get a tub of Apiguard each year for those. I space the two treatments about 10 days apart, so the total treatment time is 20 days. Apiguard is a little less effective than Apivar in my experience but adequate. Those hives also get a midwinter oav.
 

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Thanks Dan. I used Apiguard for a couple of seasons with fair results. I have had a couple of colonies abscond when I applied the treatment, so I have stopped using it. Probably my fault as I was using it too early in the year and temps got too hot over the course of the treatment. I would probably need to wait until late September or early October to find a weather-appropriate window to use Apiguard, and of course, I would have no guaranty of cooler weather at that time. That is just too long of a gap for my comfort between removal of supers (End of July) and treatment. We do have very similar climates, but I bet you get cooler quicker in North GA than I do down here on the FL line. I can see how Apiguard would be a real option there.

BTW, I am an Auburn fan. That game was just painful to watch.
 

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psm "Thoughts and comments are welcome." Ever thought of doing an inverse warehousing as in doing in the far North to create a brood break? Basically refrigeration to 40F or move them to a cold location when there is no flow period?

Also, when re-queening can you force a brood break, OAV treat and then re-queen?

Crazy ideas, I know. I deal with the cold. It is easier than dealing with the heat problems.
 

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Anyone have suspicions about honey getting somehow tainted with the aroma of Apiguard?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
psm "Thoughts and comments are welcome." Ever thought of doing an inverse warehousing as in doing in the far North to create a brood break? Basically refrigeration to 40F or move them to a cold location when there is no flow period? That is a really interesting thought. I don't see why it would not work in theory, but it would be cost-prohibitive on my small scale. I think I would actually have access to some cold storage facilities, but rent and figuring out ventilation of CO2 would still put it way out of reach for me.

Also, when re-queening can you force a brood break, OAV treat and then re-queen? I do this every spring via Fly-Back Splits https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v...x4jMvmiv-AcUES14ygFmmJTvqy1SOO4VdnQ5BvAX3E&e= I have not have attempted a Fall brood break. I suppose that is an option, but I see a lot of risks trying to do it at that time of year with a heavy mite load already on your bees

Crazy ideas, I know. I deal with the cold. It is easier than dealing with the heat problems.
nm
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Anyone have suspicions about honey getting somehow tainted with the aroma of Apiguard?
I don't know how it would not. But your marketable honey is supposed to be removed before the treatments go in.
 

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Anyone have suspicions about honey getting somehow tainted with the aroma of Apiguard?
I wouldn't consider applying Apiguard with honey supers on. I'm pretty sure it would ruin any honey for human consumption.
 

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Nice mite washes. Kudos for doing them!

Apivar has been the most reliable here also. Especially in hot and humid summers it often times is not only more effective than the natural treatments but also safer for the bees.

Short brood breaks and treating with Apivar or O.A. = dropping the hammer on the mites. It works very well.

Apiguard and honey equals Honey with a Listerine flavor.

Sorry about the Auburn game. Don't worry Alabama will give the dawgs a good run for their money! :lookout: ROLL TIDE!
 

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Sorry about the Auburn game. Don't worry Alabama will give the dawgs a good run for their money! :lookout: ROLL TIDE!
We're ok with a run for their money....as long as the Bulldogs come out on top.:)
 

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I wouldn't consider applying Apiguard with honey supers on. I'm pretty sure it would ruin any honey for human consumption.
I don't know how it would not. But your marketable honey is supposed to be removed before the treatments go in.
<Snip>Apiguard and honey equals Honey with a Listerine flavor. <Snip>
With supers on it would be a given; Normal course of events would sometimes leave possibility of some of the brood box stores being moved up to supers in the following spring. Have heard that Hop Guard can do the same. I have used only a bit of formic and almost entirely OA vapor so no personal experience with the off tasting honey.

I can see where Apivar would be tempting especially in areas where you experience a lot of incoming mites from surrounding colonies.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Frank: I only had a couple of years experience with Apiguard and I always used it in the Fall after supers came off. I never noticed a residue of odor or taste in the honey they collected in the supers the following Spring. Perhaps if you used it in the Spring, before supers go on, you might run into that issue.
 

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It is horrifying to open up a hive and see my beloving bees with deformed wing disease, powdery stuff on them and what looks like no waste. It happened to my favorite hive a few years back. Very demoralizing. I use the shop towel method for treatment and as long as I change the towels every couple of months the mite counts are minimal. It's been so hot here in central California that I don't dare to slip in the the plastic board into the 10 Frame Varroa Trap with Drawer for 24 hours to get a mite count yet. It's still in the 80s and 90s.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
It is horrifying to open up a hive and see my beloving bees with deformed wing disease, powdery stuff on them and what looks like no waste. It happened to my favorite hive a few years back. Very demoralizing. I use the shop towel method for treatment and as long as I change the towels every couple of months the mite counts are minimal. It's been so hot here in central California that I don't dare to slip in the the plastic board into the 10 Frame Varroa Trap with Drawer for 24 hours to get a mite count yet. It's still in the 80s and 90s.
I had high hopes for the OA shop towel method but got very poor results. Since the method is kind of off brand and relied on kind of a homemade ****tail dissolved into a paper towel, I felt sure it was me not getting the formula correct. However, the University of Georgia and Auburn University bee labs conducted an experiment (Randy Oliver consulted with Jennifer Berry of UGA) with shop towels and did not get very good results either. There is some thought that perhaps the high humidity of the Southeastern US vs. the arid climate of Northern CA (where Oliver is) could explain the differing results. But I don't think anything has ever been concluded on that. Neither Auburn nor Georgia has published their final results (that I know of). However, Jennifer Berry (GA) and Geoff Williams (Auburn) have both spoken of the study at conferences. You know . . . back when we had conferences?

I have not given up on the idea of a slow-release substrate charged with OA that releases over a long period of time. Basically, Apivar with OA instead of amitraz. Hope it happens soon.
 
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