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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, All!
I have on purpose make the hives queen less so that their mite population went down.
But all spring and summer long I have never seen any mite on my bees. I keep the hygenic
Cordovan bees. So my question is do I still need to treat or do a hive check for mites in the Fall?
They are healthy without any sign of deform wing or bees. What do you think?
 

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Using the words of a very old and wise man... "Just because you cannot see something, does not mean that it isn't there."
Mites are one of those things that hide well until your hive is overrun by them. Do either a powder sugar roll, or an ether roll. Get a real understanding of how hygenic the bees are for sure. Testing is always a good thing to do just to make sure. We are getting closer to the time the bees are starting to brood up for winter, going into winter with good healthy and as close to mite free bees as possible is a goal everyone should achieve.
 

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no matter what you have in your hives, raising bees is not like having an aquarium, I tell people. There is an extraordinary amount of hands on involved and interpretation of what you see to be a successful beekeeper-IMO. There is a rough calendar we adhere to which corresponds to established phenoms in the bee industry. The common pest that can devastate a bee colony are SHB, nosema and VD.

In regard to no sign of deformed wings, by the time you start to see DW, you already have a good problem. periodic monitoring-yes mite checks help keep us informed as to the health of our colonies.

I would love to think that just because we use genetics to raise the right strain of bees we will be pest free, I just don't think this is an absolute axiom. eat when you are hungry, sleep when you are tired, and treat for pest when you have a level of pests that can have a commercial impact-blah-blah-blah.Beekeeping is an ongoing affair. good luck...
Hi, All!
I have on purpose make the hives queen less so that their mite population went down.
But all spring and summer long I have never seen any mite on my bees. I keep the hygenic
Cordovan bees. So my question is do I still need to treat or do a hive check for mites in the Fall?
They are healthy without any sign of deform wing or bees. What do you think?
 

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Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
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>But all spring and summer long I have never seen any mite on my bees.

It is very hard to see mites on bees without a LOT of practice. If you are worried about how many mites you have, you should not go with your gut feeling, or lose sleep over it, there is no point speculating about it, you should measure it.

http://www.honeybeesuite.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/cfans_asset_317466.pdf
 

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MICHAEL, IS THIS WHAT YOU USE? I think I am all over this and I thought i was going to get a quick 9 in this morning.....THANKS
>But all spring and summer long I have never seen any mite on my bees.

It is very hard to see mites on bees without a LOT of practice. If you are worried about how many mites you have, you should not go with your gut feeling, or lose sleep over it, there is no point speculating about it, you should measure it.

http://www.honeybeesuite.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/cfans_asset_317466.pdf
 

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I'm not in the habit of measuring mites anymore, but when I did, yes, that is one of the methods I used. I had screened bottom boards at the time also. So I would look at natural drop, sugar roll and uncap some drone brood and average how many mites you find per drone pupae. It's also more about trend than a point in time. If the numbers are rapidly rising that is more of an indicator of a problem than a specific number that is staying about the same. I suppose someone should devise a formula for mite counts over time and how fast they are accelerating as a useful measurement of the problem. But at least you can count and in a few weeks, count again.
 

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But all spring and summer long I have never seen any mite on my bees. I keep the hygenic
Cordovan bees.
Not to long ago you broached this same subject with the inference that your "hygienic Cordovans " were the reason you have no mites. As was stated previously I am going to reiterate that the "hygienic" gene is out of the picture when it come to SMR or VHS traits! Willing to let slip the family history tree of those queens?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks all for the very well thought out responses.
Will have to do a sugar dusting to see for myself before going into the Fall.
I need to evaluate these queens a few more season to see if they live up to
what the producer claim them to be. If they are no good then I don't want to
mislead anybody here. But they grow healthy so far and made 24 qcs in a 10 frame split
for some late summer queens. So only time will tell if these hives will overwinter or not.
 

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You are going to leave it to chance?
Thanks all for the very well thought out responses.
Will have to do a sugar dusting to see for myself before going into the Fall.
I need to evaluate these queens a few more season to see if they live up to
what the producer claim them to be. If they are no good then I don't want to
mislead anybody here. But they grow healthy so far and made 24 qcs in a 10 frame split
for some late summer queens. So only time will tell if these hives will overwinter or not.
 

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When in doubt, check things out. Do an ether roll, a powdered sugar shake, or an alcohol wash of about three hundred bees from the brood comb of your hive(s). Then you will have some idea of whether mites are there or not and an idea of what percentage.

These testing techniques require practice. And some hands on instruction would be nice. Be sure, if you use these techniques, that you know where your queen(s) is/are.
 

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I had a friend come over and check my hives out last night who has kept bees for 4 seasons. First year beekeepers, go through a lot of gyrations before we see the big picture, he too doesn't check very often for mites. Beekeeping is very technical and can be rewarding if you are in to a hobby that demands the rigors of this discipline...Treat or not treat, monitor or not-people enjoy bees and work them at different levels.
When in doubt, check things out. Do an ether roll, a powdered sugar shake, or an alcohol wash of about three hundred bees from the brood comb of your hive(s). Then you will have some idea of whether mites are there or not and an idea of what percentage.

These testing techniques require practice. And some hands on instruction would be nice. Be sure, if you use these techniques, that you know where your queen(s) is/are.
 

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Reasons not to do an ether or alcohol roll:
1) if you get the queen, you will kill her
2) you will certainly kill 300 bees

Reasons to do a powdered sugar roll instead:
1) if you get the queen it will do her no harm
2) you will NOT kill ANY bees
 

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Virginia Bee Supply
July 23
August is coming here in the Mid-Atlantic, and there's not much you can do for your hives, however, you do need to make sure things are in order before August arrives.
1: If your hive still has frames to draw out or lot's of empty comb.....feed! Remember bees eat constantly and there is no honey flow coming in.
2: Check your populations... are they high? Only give your bees enough room as they can handle. Pictured below is the very beginning of Wax Moth infestation on a weaker hive. To much room, and Wax Moths will move right in, that will lead to a real mess.
3. It's not to late to requeen. Is your queen laying, is she even there?
4. Monitor your hive beetle population and take adequate measures.
5. It will probably be a little to hot to treat for mites if needed. Most treatments work better under 90 degrees. So watch the weather patterns and do a mite count. You should have treated already, your next chance might not be until September.
6. If it turns really hot and humid, bees like humans can become very cranky, leave them be and please provide plenty of water.
7. If you haven't pulled off your honey.....get it off.....only give them the room they absolutely need.
8. Have a cookout!
 

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That's for sure. and we all learn, or don't, at our own pace w/ what teachers are available. This is where a program like NYS Bee Wellness and EAS's Master Beekeeper Program come in handy when there aren't other venues in which to learn.

Some apiary Inspection Programs provide advice and instruction, but that isn't what they were designed to do. And Apiary Inspectors are in some States new to bees and beekeeping themselves and have other duties and backgrounds.
 

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Reasons not to do an ether or alcohol roll:
2) you will certainly kill 300 bees.
If your hives are healthy this should not matter I think alcohol washes are the best test.
I just did alcohol washes to most my hives last week and killed a pile of bee's but my hives are so strong there was no change and no mites.
I treated with OAV at the end of last year and have most my hives on 4.9 cell and I did not find 1 mite in any of the hives I tested last week sure does feel good.
Will be testing in SEPT. again .
 

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I believe that across the US, the use of alcohol wash is more or less standard practice among Apiary Inspectors. For whatever you think that is worth.
 

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Cordovan? Are yours kind of broody?
Do they look awesome on a flow?

In my limited experience 60 days after the queen reduces laying to roughly 1/2 you'll be able to clearly see where you stand.

I'd love to hear where the Hygienic Cordovan stock came from your endorsement isn't needed if that's the label that was put on them by the seller.
 

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Mbeck;1146215 [U said:
I'd love to hear where the Hygienic Cordovan stock came from.

Ditto: I asked the same question above previously and received no response. Would love to know the answer as something does not jive!!!

In our mite testing with the Bee informed crowd the data has shown me that hives grown off of Cordovan cells produced by a queen and package producer with a very good reputation out of northern California not only are not very mite resistant but happen to show over 2 x the load of our own Mutts in every test....

Contrary to the new math and common core 2+2 does not equal 1.
 

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In our mite testing with the Bee informed crowd the data has shown me that hives grown off of Cordovan cells produced by a queen and package producer with a very good reputation out of northern California not only are not very mite resistant but happen to show over 2 x the load of our own Mutts in every test....
There is no doubt my cordovan hives are mite factories but I wonder how much is related to individual behavior verse brood management (they have none). I think with my untrained eyes that I see similar mite counts up until the Cordovans begin thier super size brood nest and/or the reduction of population brood production. Mite growth/population seems similar in hives with like growth/decline. I guess the result is the same?
 
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