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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Visited an outyard on my lunch break today and found a bunch of dead bees stacked up at the entrance. Popped the top. Dead Out. Strapped it all together with duct tape, threw it in the back of my truck and just finished going through it in my shop.

I did an OAV on this hive on 9/2/18 and inserted Apivar strips on 9/3/18. Pulled Apivar strips on 10/21/18. Did an OAV with sticky board in place on 10/28/18 and pulled sticky board on 10/30/18. 2 mites logged in my book.

No PMS. No quinine deposits. No emerging bees with tongues out. Just a box full of empty comb without a drop of honey or sugar in any of it and bees dead head first in the cells.

All that effort in mite control and I failed to feed them enough. This is a humbling hobby.

PS: Insult to injury. Notice the Apivar strip on the bottom board that fell down and I failed to remove.

BEAB8098-5920-4CA9-A818-45E40B2A0C10.jpg ABAC7AE4-94D5-46EC-954D-DBD344FEFCB7.jpg 8112261B-1EF1-4919-8CD9-6DFC000A1485.jpg 33E4C3B5-219A-4C4B-9354-9B4D4BF00E37.jpg A91E6405-9F20-4A11-8CEF-19BC04D8DECC.jpg
 

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I know the feeling I had a small nuc starve because I got too focused on mites and not enough on feed. I took it as a sign and added sugar bricks to all my hives that week. Might want to think about doing the same.
 

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Really sorry to hear about that. I know how you stay on top of your hives.

I put sugar bricks on mine and hate to crack the boxes to check them when the temps were going to drop so low. Next chance I'll check mine again.

It's always something...
 

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I certainly hope so! I melted down ALL my deep brood frames of wax and torched the insides of all boxes and lids and bottom boards, etc. So they had a clean start last summer.

My five hives I went into the winter with look good so far. Hoping the prolific South Yellow Jasmine blooms while something else is blooming this year. The state inspector and I believe this was the trigger to the die off. I'll be very vigilant this spring.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
John Mynard, the pseudo-retired apiary inspector for the state, was telling a group of us in the summer that he had seen a lot of yellow jasmine dead outs in the spring of 2018.
 

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And there's no controlling that negative factor when that's the only thing blooming and the bees are foraging. It really stressed out my hive and gave an open door to EFB.
 

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I did an OAV on this hive on 9/2/18 and inserted Apivar strips on 9/3/18. Pulled Apivar strips on 10/21/18. Did an OAV with sticky board in place on 10/28/18 and pulled sticky board on 10/30/18. 2 mites logged in my book.
I don't think all that was necessary. Apivar is a very effective treatment but must be left in long enough, ie, 8 - 10 weeks. Plus must be positioned correctly, ie, mid brood, not edge of brood.
Do that and the oxalic treatments need not have been done.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I don't think all that was necessary. Apivar is a very effective treatment but must be left in long enough, ie, 8 - 10 weeks. Plus must be positioned correctly, ie, mid brood, not edge of brood.
Do that and the oxalic treatments need not have been done.
I agree Oldtimer. The OAVs were done with sticky boards in place before my “Hard” treatment, just to figure out where I was before and after. Not necessarily to kill mites. The Apivar label states to leave the strips in for 42 days and no longer than 56 days. 6 - 8 weeks. Don’t know if your label is different there or if your experience is that you get a more effective kill beyond 8 weeks?
 

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Yes that's an interesting question. Years ago I noticed that if Apivar was removed at 6 weeks it didn't get all the mites. I contacted the manufacturers in France and was told that their own experiments were it works best if left in 8 - 10 weeks, but due to some legal type issues around labelling they made the New Zealand version of the label 6 - 8 weeks, same as other mite strips on our market. But their private view was the strips should be left in longer.

Later, the label, at least in the NZ strips, the time was made longer. My own experience is they do an excellent job if left in 8 - 10 weeks. But i see a constant stream of people who run into problems after they took the strips out at 6 weeks.
 

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All this obsession with mites has opportunity costs. Too bad some of it isn't directed to identifying low mite colonies and raising queens from them.
 

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The times I have used Apivar, I left it in for the full eight weeks (maybe a little longer but that would be off label so I didn't do it);)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Yes that's an interesting question. Years ago I noticed that if Apivar was removed at 6 weeks it didn't get all the mites. I contacted the manufacturers in France and was told that their own experiments were it works best if left in 8 - 10 weeks, but due to some legal type issues around labelling they made the New Zealand version of the label 6 - 8 weeks, same as other mite strips on our market. But their private view was the strips should be left in longer.

Later, the label, at least in the NZ strips, the time was made longer. My own experience is they do an excellent job if left in 8 - 10 weeks. But i see a constant stream of people who run into problems after they took the strips out at 6 weeks.
That is new to me. Very interesting. We are told pretty uniformly over here that you are a bad beekeeper if you leave the strips in over 56 days. That exposing the bees to the weakened dose after that time period only promotes mite resistance to amitraz. I will be reading up on that. Thanks Old Timer.
 

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About that, a new amitraz based product has been released here called Apitraz. It's pretty much like Apivar but only has 1/2 the dose of amitraz in it that Apivar does. I haven't used it but been told it works OK.

So to me, that adds some credence to leaving the Apivar strips in longer, even though the dose would be weaker.
 

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I don't think leaving the Apivar strip in "too long" is as critical as not leaving it in long enough. I worked with a commercial beek a few years back. It wasn't uncommon to find "old" Apivar strips, queen cages, beetle traps, etc. in the hives.
 

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Since 2017, after reading a French investigation (already mentioned by me at BS https://www.beesource.com/forums/sh...ar-6-weeks-or-12-weeks&highlight=apivar+weeks) I started to leave the Apivar strips between 10-12 weeks in the hives. I have not had any more varroa mortality since then. The manufacturer in Europe currently recommends the use of the Apivar for 10 weeks when brood is present.

Proper placement of the strips well into the litter area and subsequent adjustment is very important to ensure efficacy. I make this adjustment of the strips 4 to 6 weeks after I have placed them and I also use to scratch the strips surface.

OT in Europe, Apitraz also has 500 mg of amitraz per strip such as Apivar. The biggest difference is in the excipients of the two products, according to the information provided by Veto-Pharma.
 
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