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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have foam insulation on my hives now. If Formic pro works as a vapor then would it work by sliding the strips into the hives on the bottom board? Trying to decide between Formica acid verses oxalis acid vaporizer.
 

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With foam insulation installed on your hives OAV would be far easier to treat with but remember that OAV will only kill phoretic varroa mites, NOT the reproductive/foundress varroa mites. Once the hive has brooded up to its full potential or close to it, then it would be most effective and practical to treat with a mite treatment that kills reproductive mites. Using MAQS or Formic Pro will definitely achieve this HOWEVER........by the time the hives have brooded up, the temperatures may be in the upper limits or over the temperature limits to treat with MAQS or Formic Pro which could be very hard to disastrous on your brood and queen. In this case I would strongly recommend the Mighty Mite Killer which is MUCH easier on the bees and accomplishes the same thing without the harsh chemicals.

https://www.beehivethermalindustries.com/shop

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I have foam insulation on my hives now. If Formic pro works as a vapor then would it work by sliding the strips into the hives on the bottom board? Trying to decide between Formica acid verses oxalis acid vaporizer.
Formic is easy, doesn't require a lot of infrastructure in the bee yard, but it's temperature dependent. If using the Formic pro strips, follow the label instructions for the best results. Oxalic is less expensive than Formic Pro, but does require 12V power source for the wand style vaporizer, 110V for the industrial blower style. Wands take much longer than blowers. A lot depends on how many colonies you need to do, how much time you are prepared to spend doing them, then balance that against the cost of the equipment.

The other consideration, oxalic acid vaporizing is very effective on a broodless colony, not as effective on a colony with brood.

For our own example, in the summer yards we use formic after the honey supers come off. The colonies have brood and we have no infrastructure available to power equipment. It's a 40 minute drive, so I dont want to do multiple trips for successive OA applications. In the winter yard, completely different story. We do a round of OA mid winter, colonies are broodless and we have both 12V and 110V power easily available. If using the wand, I park the lawn tractor in front of a row of colonies and hook the vaporizer up to the battery on the lawn tractor. If using a blower, i need 100 feet of extension cord to reach the farthest hive stand from the plugs.

How many hives have you actually treated using the Mighty Mite Killer?
I've never used it. At 300 bucks a pop it's not appealing at all in terms of cost. It requires 110V and will take 3 hours per colony. If using only one, I'd be at it full time for a week or more to get thru all the colonies in one yard. In the summer yards, I'd need a generator running the whole time. Besides the time factor, the gas for the generator will probably cost as much or more compared to just doing formic pads. I can do 20 colonies with formic pads in an hour, including the time to make up the pads, total cost about 8 bucks for the acid and another buck for the pads. When pulling honey supers it's even more efficient. We pull the supers off, throw on the pad, then the lid goes back on, adds virtually no time to the overall workload.

A gadget like that may appeal to somebody that has endless time for a couple colonies in the back yard, but it's absolutely impractical if the colony count scales up, and becomes moreso when they are kept in areas with no infrastructure.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I had a shop fire and lost my vaporizer. It worked great. In Alabama I have lost most hives in August.I think my hives would be strong enough to fight off the SHB in AugustIf I could treat them again in the hot days of June. I’m not concerned about losing some brood in June because I believe a brood break is good if you have a good queen. My concern would be killing the queen in a hot hive.
 

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I've never used it. At 300 bucks a pop it's not appealing at all in terms of cost. It requires 110V and will take 3 hours per colony. If using only one, I'd be at it full time for a week or more to get thru all the colonies in one yard. In the summer yards, I'd need a generator running the whole time. Besides the time factor, the gas for the generator will probably cost as much or more compared to just doing formic pads. I can do 20 colonies with formic pads in an hour, including the time to make up the pads, total cost about 8 bucks for the acid and another buck for the pads. When pulling honey supers it's even more efficient. We pull the supers off, throw on the pad, then the lid goes back on, adds virtually no time to the overall workload.

A gadget like that may appeal to somebody that has endless time for a couple colonies in the back yard, but it's absolutely impractical if the colony count scales up, and becomes moreso when they are kept in areas with no infrastructure.
As I thought, you have no experience with the MMK.

You dismiss the cost of $300 as not appealing but fail to take into account the cost savings of the chemical treatments you DO NOT pay for. It requires 120V and yes a full treatment cycle will take approximately 3 hours. Not everyone is treating large numbers of hives like you apparently seem to be however, I treat over 100 hives and easily complete the task in 3 weeks at a leisurely pace treating multiple hives at once, running one treatment cycle per day and during that 3 weeks I have used about 6 gallons gas or about $12 worth of gas at current prices. I can run 2 treatment cycles per day and double the number of hives treated during that time or cut in half the time to treat what I have been. Treating 20 hives with Formic Pro costs on average about $5 per hive which comes to about $100. So, $12 for gas vs. $100 for Formic Pro.

In your case, you are FAR north of just about everyone on this forum in latitude and not surprisingly, the temperature treatment window for Formic Pro/MAQS is hugely larger than for most beekeepers on this forum who are much farther south in latitude thus severely limiting the days in which these products can be applied without killing large amounts of brood, bee, and possibly the queen. To say the least......in my opinion, it would be HIGHLY inadvisable to treat with Formic Pro/MAQS multiple times per season for very obvious reasons. Thus other chemical treatments must be employed.

When treating my hives with past treatments I have come to rely on , it requires approximately 8 to 10 fifty packs of Apivar depending upon the number of hives and brood boxes in each hive. Buying it on sale at $125 per 50 pack would typically run me between $1,000 to $1,250.

The initial cost outlay for a generator runs between $1,000 for a Honda EU 2200 to $700 for a Ryobi 2300 if you plan to run multiple Mighty Mite Killers like I do or as low as $300 for a cheap <1,000 watt inverter generator. Add to that maybe $100 for some extension cords and adaptors.

The rest of us in the lower 48 states may not want to wait until as late as last October/November to safely use Formic Pro/MAQS. Each time I treat with my Mighty Mite Killers I save on average $1,000. I bought a spare generator so I'm including that cost too, so figure $2,200. I use 8 ten frame Mighty Mite Killers simultaneously to treat my 10 frame hives @ $2400. I use 5 five frame Mighty Mite Killers to treat my nucs (about 50 nucs) @ $1650. Figure $150 for extension cords and adaptors. In about six treatments, all of my equipment has paid for itself.

Not everyone is treating this many hives and can scale back and figure their costs accordingly and the cost of the chemical treatments accordingly.

What has not been taken into account thus far is the fact that the hives treated with the Mighty Mite Killer are maintained chemical free and typically must be split in some fashion about 3 weeks after treatment during the Summer or risk swarming due to the significant brood production increase. I treat 3 times per season roughly every 90 days. I seriously doubt you can do that with Formic Pro/MAQS.
 

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I'm wondering why the need to treat three times since the foundress mites are killed. It seems it would take a long time for the mites to build up again starting from zero following treatment. Are you in an area rife with mite bombs?

Alex
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I’m in Alabama ,so that would probably be south of most on the forum unless most live in Florida. Good luck with your heating pads.
 

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" I treat 3 times per season roughly every 90 days" "I treat over 100 hives and easily complete the task in 3 weeks at a leisurely pace treating multiple hives at once,"

I think I agree with grozzie2 ! My son runs 50 hives and no way he would allot that much time and expense. That generator you have that burns only $6 of fuel to produce that many kilowatts sure sounds like a winner though;)
 

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I'm wondering why the need to treat three times since the foundress mites are killed. It seems it would take a long time for the mites to build up again starting from zero following treatment. Are you in an area rife with mite bombs?

Alex
Here are some studys on this very question:

https://www.beehivethermalindustries.com/resources/studies/mite-elimination-thermotherapy-2015

https://www.beehivethermalindustrie...oa-mites-case-study-temperature-vs-pesticides

https://www.beehivethermalindustries.com/pdf/documents/IPM varroa mite.pdf

The Mighty Mite Killer may not be for everyone but do the research before you dismiss it out of hand.
 

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" I treat 3 times per season roughly every 90 days" "I treat over 100 hives and easily complete the task in 3 weeks at a leisurely pace treating multiple hives at once,"

I think I agree with grozzie2 ! My son runs 50 hives and no way he would allot that much time and expense. That generator you have that burns only $6 of fuel to produce that many kilowatts sure sounds like a winner though;)
If you are going to quote me, please actually do it. I clearly said about 6 gallons gas or about $12 worth of gas at current prices. ;)
 

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If you are going to quote me, please actually do it. I clearly said about 6 gallons gas or about $12 worth of gas at current prices. ;)
Touch'e! I have to give you that one! That would be about 20 Canadian dollars for 4.5 Imperial gallons.

I think a person would have to assign a very high value to the "chemical free" aspect, to balance out the capital outlay and high labor costs. Some people are motivated to do just that and they will be your customers.
 

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Take a deep breath, Dude. I didn't dismiss anything out of hand. I asked a legitimate question related to location.

If you are the ambassador for the MMK, I hope they have deep pockets.

Alex
 

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I have foam insulation on my hives now. If Formic pro works as a vapor then would it work by sliding the strips into the hives on the bottom board? Trying to decide between Formica acid verses oxalis acid vaporizer.
Do not put the strips on the bottom of the hive. Formic acid fumes are heavier than air and will primarily flow downward, right out of the hive without killing most of the mites.
 
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